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State pie winner competes in national bake-off

Contact: Denise Yockey
(800) 456-2753

Recipe now released to public!Michigan resident Lucille Eisbrenner is hoping her apple pie featuring Michigan McIntosh apples, macadamia nuts and coconut milk continues to garner rave reviews at this weekend's 2007 APC Crisco National Pie Championships.

Her Macadamia Nut Crumb Pie, derived from tireless taste-testing by family and friends, earned first place in the 2nd Annual Best Michigan Apple Pie Contest in January during Zehnder's Snowfest in Frankenmuth. As part of her winnings, Eisbrenner earned a trip to Celebration, Florida, where she will enter the original recipe in the national pie championships, slated April 20-22.

A Roscommon resident, Eisbrenner is looking forward to the national pie-making contest, where she will bake on-site Friday and await judging results on Saturday. Taking her role as Michigan's top pie baker very seriously, Eisbrenner requested that her recipe be kept a secret until the national competition. It is now available for the first time from the Michigan Apple Committee, a sponsor of the state competition along with Michigan Sugar and Zehnder's of Frankenmuth. (See recipe below)

This will be Eisbrenner's first trip to Florida. She plans to take along her daughter, a baker in her own right, according to her mom. A love of pie has been passed on from generation to generation in this family, with Eisbrenner citing her mother as a great cooking inspiration. She is also grateful to her family for acting as judges throughout the recipe's development.

The Michigan pie contest was held in conjunction with National Pie Day, a holiday devoted to American's favorite dessert. The American Pie Council, organizers of the National Pie Championships, applauds the Michigan contest as a unique and exciting way to promote National Pie Day.

Michigan commercially grows 20 different apple varieties, many of which are excellent for baking such as Jonathan, Jonagold, Ida Red, Empire and Rome.

The Michigan Apple Committee is a grower-funded nonprofit organization devoted to promotion, education and research activities to distinguish the Michigan apple and encourage its consumption by consumers in Michigan and around the world. For more information, visit MichiganApples.com.


(Recipe by Lucille Eisbrenner of Roscommon, Michigan)

2 cups sifted all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon Pioneer granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking soda
1/2 cup lard
1 large egg
1 tablespoon lemon juice
2 tablespoons ice water

3 cups Michigan apples, peeled, cored, sliced (Recommended varieties: McIntosh, Cortland, Ida Red)
3/4 cup light corn syrup
1/2 cup coconut milk
1/2 cup Pioneer granulated sugar
3 eggs
3 tablespoons butter, melted
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Crust Topping:
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 cup light brown sugar
1/3 cup quick cooking oats
6 tablespoons butter
1/2 cup macadamia nuts, coarsely chopped

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
For the crust – In a bowl, sift together flour, sugar, salt and baking soda. Cut in the lard with a pastry blender, or two knives until pieces are the size of small peas. Beat together the egg, lemon juice and ice water. Gradually add the egg mixture to the flour, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with a fork until dough forms a ball. Refrigerate until ready to use.

For the filling – In a large bowl, beat corn syrup, coconut milk, sugar and eggs at medium speed until smooth. At low speed, beat in butter. Stir in apples. Set aside.

For the topping – In another bowl, combine the first three ingredients. Cut in butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Stir in the nuts. Set aside.

On a lightly floured surface with a floured rolling pin, roll the dough ball into a 12-inch circle and fit into a 9-inch pan, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Spoon the filling mixture into a prepared pie shell. Trim and flute edge. Sprinkle topping evenly over apples. If desired, cut excess dough with shaped cookie cutters and place on top.

Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes. Turn oven temperature down to 350 degrees and continue baking for 40 minutes until apples test done with a fork. Cool on a wire rack.

Refrigerate leftovers.

Yield: 6-8 servings.