Apple Hill

Come Fall we love  taking our annual  road trip to Apple Hill.  We plan and anticipate baking our mouth-watering classic apple pie and creating home-made applesauce for school lunches.  We begin our Apple Hill trek with a picnic at Jack Russel Farm Brewery then off to do a little apple shopping and tasting.  Our top  three favorite stops are Boa Vista Orchards, High Hill Ranch, and Abel’s Apple Acres. There are many more farms to explore.  Take your pick! Apple Hill  is about 1 hour east of Sacramento and 1 hour west of South Lake Tahoe.



Once we arrive home, we sort and clean our apples.  Here are two of our very favorite “Apple” recipes:


Classic Apple Pie

This apple pie is a classic, from the tasty filling to the flaky pastry crust. It is homemade goodness at its very best!


Double-Crust Pastry

1/3 to 1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon salt
8 cups thinly sliced peeled tart apples (8 medium)
2 tablespoons butter or margarine


  • 1 Heat oven to 425ºF. Prepare Double-Crust Pastry.
  • 2 Mix sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt in large bowl. Stir in apples. Turn into pastry-lined pie plate. Dot with butter. Trim overhanging edge of pastry 1/2 inch from rim of plate.
  • 3 Roll other round of pastry. Fold into fourths and cut slits so steam can escape. Unfold top pastry over filling; trim overhanging edge 1 inch from rim of plate. Fold and roll top edge under lower edge, pressing on rim to seal; flute as desired. Cover edge with 3-inch strip of aluminum foil to prevent excessive browning. Remove foil during last 15 minutes of baking.
  • 4 Bake 40 to 50 minutes or until crust is brown and juice begins to bubble through slits in crust. Serve warm if desired.


Classic Applesauce

 McIntosh apples make a traditional applesauce, but I found using a mix of varieties gives dimension.


  • 4 pounds apples, such as McIntosh, Gala, and Braeburn
  • 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice (from 2 lemons)
  • 3 tablespoons dark-brown sugar (optional)


  1. Peel, core, and slice apples.

  2. In a large pot, bring apples, lemon juice, and 1 1/2 cups water to a boil over high. Reduce heat and simmer until apples are very soft and falling apart, 25 to 30 minutes.

  3. Mash with a potato masher or pulse in a food processor until smooth with small chunks remaining. (Add sugar, if using.)

  4. Let cool, then transfer applesauce to airtight containers.

Note: Refrigerate applesauce up to 5 days, or freeze up to 2 months.

Cheers & Enjoy!