3 cups Fuji apples, cut into small chunks. (about 4 good sized apples)
Prepared (or frozen) regular pie crust, not deep-dish
2/3-3/4 cup white sugar
1 tsp. cinnamon
1/2 tsp. nutmeg
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/2 stick (4 tbsp) butter (not margarine, real, SALTED butter)
1/2 cup brown sugar (I prefer dark brown)
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup chopped pecans
1. Listen as your oldest child laments, with just a hint of tears, "You never make apple pie and it's my FAVORITE DESSERT in the WHOLE WORLD and I'll DIE IF YOU DON'T MAKE ME ONE."
2. Recall fondly when, as a teenager, you made really amazing apple pie. Remember how easy it was and how impressed everyone in your extended family was when you brought it to Thanksgiving dinner.
3. Go to the store and lovingly select 5 pounds of apples so you have "enough."
4. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Allow your youngest child to pull up a stepstool so he can "help" with the making of the pie.
5. Chop up 8 apples. About 4 will go into the pie crust, the other 4 should be stolen by your children and (you are reasonably certain) husband.
6. Combine the sugar, spices, and salt in a cereal bowl and mix with a fork. (Reserve fork for later.) Dump the mixture on the apples and toss until reasonably evenly coated.
7. Using the fork (you're welcome), mash together the butter, flour, and brown sugar until you've got something more-or-less dough-like. Add pecans and mash some more.
8. Using your fingers, press the crumb mixture over the top of the apples. USE IT ALL. You heard me.
9. Pop that sucker right into the oven. Use a cookie sheet. We're not savages, for heaven's sake.
10. Let it cook for 40 minutes as you lament the state of your thighs.
11. At the 40 minute mark, turn off the oven and look at it longingly as it cools. LEAVE THE PIE IN THERE. Do not question me.
12. About an hour later, pull the cookie sheet out. You're welcome. The pie should also be there, amid the delicious drips of spiced apple goo.
13. Call your children to sample the pie. Look at the light in their eyes as they race down the stairs screaming, "Mommy made us a pie! We have the best mommy ever!"
14. Observe the light in their eyes die as your oldest says, "Ew, that's what an apple pie looks like? I am NOT eating THAT."
15. Put those children to bed.
16. Open the cool whip.
17. It was too good for them, anyway.
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