No Fail Pie Crust

Did you know that with an extra 30 minutes, you could have the most flaky and delicious pie crust for your creative self to add any kind of sweet or savory goodness to? I still think buying a pie crust is the easy option but there’s something extra in your pie when you make the crust. Maybe somehow, a little extra love gets into the pie during the kneading and rolling  process. Maybe it’s the massive amount of butter. Whatever it is, people always comment on this crust recipe when I make our pies. 

   
 No Fail Pie Crust (recipe from Williams-Sonoma)

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

* 2 Tbs. sugar

* 2 tsp. salt

* 16 Tbs. (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch pieces

* 6 to 8 Tbs. ice water

* 1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 Tbs. water

In a food processor, combine the flour, sugar and salt and pulse to combine. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal. (I don’t have a food processor so I just use a bowl, pastry cutter and fingers to combine everything) Add the 6 Tbs. ice water and pulse twice. The dough should hold together when squeezed with your fingers but should not be sticky. If it is crumbly, add more water, 1 tsp. at a time, pulsing twice after each addition. Turn the dough out onto a work surface and divide in half. Shape each into a disk. Wrap with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to 2 days. 

Remove the dough from the refrigerator and let stand for 5 minutes. Place 1 dough disk between 2 sheets of lightly floured waxed paper and roll out into a 12-inch round about 3/16 inch thick. Transfer to a 9-inch deep-dish pie dish and press the dough into the dish. Trim the edges, leaving a 1/2-inch overhang. Fold under the excess dough and, using your thumb, decoratively flute the edges. Roll out the remaining dough disk in the same manner. Cut into long strips for the top of your pie. Or save if your pie doesn’t need at top. Place the piecrust and strips in the freezer for 30 minutes.

Position a rack in the lower third of an oven. Place a baking sheet on the rack. Preheat the oven to 400°F.

Brush the edges of the crust with the egg mixture. Line the piecrust with parchment paper and fill with pie weights. Place the pie dish on the preheated baking sheet in the oven and bake for 20 minutes. Carefully remove the parchment and weights and bake until the crust is light golden, about 5 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool completely. 

Makes enough dough for one 9-inch deep-dish piecrust plus decorative top and a little extra or two pie crusts. 

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Cherry, Blueberry and Blackberry Pie

Following the “oh crap, I need to archive these recipes for next year” theme, here’s the most delicious Summer pie recipe EVER.

And who’s to say this can’t be made in Winter?

Cherry, Blueberry, Blackberry Pie

Cherry, Blueberry and Blackberry Pie

  • 3/4 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 1/4 pounds fresh cherries (pitted), blueberries and blackberries (I used a pint of blueberries and a pint of blackberries and 1 1/2 pound of cherries)
  • 1 TBSP butter cut into pea sized pieces
  • Sugar for top of pie crust
  • Egg wash (1 egg and 1 TBSP water mixed)
  • Pie Crust (I made my own from Jamie Oliver’s recipe here)

Prepare the bottom crust: Roll out the chilled pie dough into a 12 inch round. Gently fit into a 9- or 9.5-inch pie plate.

Prepare the top crust: Roll out the chilled pie dough into a 12 inch round. Cut lengthwise into 6 pieces.

Make the filling: In a large bowl, mix the cherries and berries with the sugar, cornstarch and kosher salt. Taste the mixture to see if you want more sugar than is called for.

Pie Filling

Assemble the pie: Pour the cherries and berries into your pie shell. Sprinkle the butter pieces across the filling. Lay three of your top dough strips vertically and evenly spaced across the top of your filling. Then weave in the remaining three pieces horizontally. Pinch the top strips into the bottom crust and crimp decoratively. Brush the top of the dough with your egg wash. Sprinkle with sugar.

Pie: pre-bake

Bake the pie: Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Place the pie plate on a foil-lined cookie sheet. Bake for about 1 hour, or until the juices are bubbling and thick. Remove to a rack to cool to room temperature before serving.

ENJOY!!

Another post without photos – Pumpkin Pie

Ok, like I mentioned in the cranberry sauce post, I’m trying to get all my favorite recipes for Thanksgiving in here. And this is one of my favorite Pumpkin Pie recipes. WARNING: if you don’t like spicy pies, this recipe isn’t for you. There’s plenty of cinnamon and ginger to make your pumpkin (and your heart) sing the happy holiday song.

Seriously though, can we talk about how quickly Thanksgiving has come? You know what? Nevermind. I’m going to try a new approach to the holidays (no complaints). I’m already giving thanks for all our blessings, family and friends. Wow, I’m so full of love all of a sudden. What a difference a new outlook makes!

Ok, on to the most scrumptious pumpkin pie…Happy Thanksgiving! xoxoox

Spiced Pumpkin Pie (adapted from epicurious.com)

  • 2/3 cup packed golden brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 TBS flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 tsp ground allspice
  • 1/8 tsp ground cloves
  • 1/4 tsp ground ginger
  • 1 1/2 cups canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
  • 1 TBS light molasses
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 cup whipping cream
  • 1 pie crust (if you’re motivated pate sucree is a great pie dough but store bought is fine too)

Place baking sheet in oven and preheat to 450 degrees.

Whisk first 8 ingredients together in a large bowl to blend. Whisk in pumpkin, molasses and eggs, then the cream. Pour mixture into frozen pie crust or pre-baked homemade crust.

Place pie on preheated baking sheet in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 325 degrees and bake until sides puff and center is just set (about 40 minutes). Cool and serve at room temp with fresh whipped cream. (pie can be made 1 day ahead and refrigerated.)

Happy Turkey Day!!

(late edit) Adding a photo of munchkin making her first pumpkin pie:

stir, stir, stir

stir, stir, stir

IMG_3457

cook, cook, cook