Archive for the ‘Pies’ Category
We like pie! We like ‘em so much that we offer them as Tarts, Tortes and Galettes/Crostattas! It’s wholesome. It can be fruity or rich, creamy or crunchy, frozen or tart.
Our pies come in Petite Sizes up to whole 10″ pies. Tarts/Tortes are small and large. Galettes and Crostattas are roughly 8″ round.
Happy 1st day of Vacation to me I’m tuckered out to say the least! I was elbow deep in pie dough today. At one point I had more flour on my shirt and jammie bottoms than I did on the kitchen counter. Flour on my face, my slippers and pieces of pie dough down my shirt…. don’t ask because I have NO idea how it got there! LOL
I had planned on only making 4 mini pies (4″ round pies). Really, ONLY 4. But somewhere between the 2nd and 3rd batch of pie dough that plan went to the wayside.
Well wait, let me backtrack to my conversation with Mr. Fantabulous last night…
“Honey, what type of pie do you want for Thanksgiving?”
“<shrugs> I don’t care; do what’s easiest. You know me, I’m not a big sweet eater.”
<makes face>”You’re not a what? Um k… so then maybe I won’t make any then.”
“Well… just make one then. ”
“Okay, what kind?”
“Pumpkin, I like pumpkin but no ‘Pshh pshhh pshhh’ stuff as you know I don’t like that stuff on pies” – side bar ‘Pshh pshhh pshhh’ is the sound spray whipped cream makes. It’s the official way to spell it *wink*
“Pumpkin. Okay, so just pumpkin. No pecan, right.”
“Well I do love your pecan pies too.. Hmmmm”
“Well how about I make 2 mini pies, just enough for a serving each, k?”
“Okay.. pumpkin and pecan.. what about apple?” … again, keep in mind. He’s not a big sweet eater! LOL If you don’t mind me I’m going to go to Gander Mtn and get hip waders as it got REAL deep in my house last night! LOL not a big sweet eater! BAH!
So back to today and my plan… well okay, dream to only make 4 mini pies. Let’s just say I ended up with 4 Bourban Pecan Pies, 2 Turtle Fudge Pecan Pies, 6 Pumpkin Cream pies, and 4 Apple pies. Now if it’s any consolation, they are mini – about 4″ round each ranging from 1.5″ deep to 3″ deep.
I did keep 4 out for tomorrow and the rest I’ll freeze for when the real Mr. Fantabulous comes home … you know the one that admits he eats sweets *wink*
Let’s face it.. home made pie crusts are something that intimidate a vast majority of the population. Why? I mean it’s just flour, water, salt, some type of fat and sugar. How could 4-5 basic ingredients even have the most seasoned bakers/chefs become apprehensive? Not sure but it does happen.
It took me a good bit of time to finally become comfortable with pie crust making and even a longer time to feel confident enough to provide guidance on it. The fact that I can reproduce a fantastic, flaky pie crust every single time is honestly such a rush for me! It’s like “Hey, I finally can hold my own”.
Now don’t get me wrong, there are some decent pre-made crusts out there but where’s the sense of accomplishment when you present your family with a beautiful COMPLETELY FROM SCRATCH pie for dessert? Trust me, once you receive your first “OHhhh!” to that last Mmm…” you’ll never buy pre-made again!
So I’ve comprised a list of tricks that will help you out. Feel free to ask questions or concerns.
1. Make sure all ingredients are super cold. This includes the dry ingredients! I typically will keep a container of Crisco in the fridge for this purpose.
2. I rely completely on a pastry cutter. You can use your food processor but I’m old school, it’s how my Grandmother and Mom taught me so I’m a creature of habit I suppose.
3. Do NOT overwork the dough with your hands nor try to get every piece of butter/Crisco incorporated. You want the ‘chunks’ to be visible in the dough. This is what causes the flakiness and air pockets to be formed in the crust.
4. If it’s warm in your kitchen, refrigerate your dough for at least 30 minutes. Weather/heat/humidity will affect your dough so you need to adjust to your environment.
5. You don’t need brute force to roll out the dough; it will move with you. No fear if you tear it though. Just keep a little bowl of water by you and carefully dab a little water around the tear and “put back together”. Add a teensy bit of flour to it to soak up the water to ensure the rolling pin doesn’t stick.
6. Unfilled pie crust, line with parchment paper and either beans or a pie chain and bake accordingly to the directions.
7. Filled crusts, I prefer to brush with milk/cream and coarse sprinkling sugar instead of egg. I like to use egg though when I’m making savory pies (think pot pies, etc…)
8. If the edges are baking too fast, either use a pie crust shield or foil works just fine.
Most importantly, check your oven temperature is accurate. An oven-safe temperature gauge can be used to verify that when you set your oven to 400 degrees that it’s actually heating up to 400 degrees. I would suggest doing this a few different times moving the actual temperature gauge to test for ‘hot spots’ in your oven.
If you follow these tips, you’ll be serving pies like these at your table