October 8th, 2013 by Jill Meredith – Comments (1)
What would the holidays be without pie? Can you even imagine Thanksgiving or Christmas with pumpkin, pecan or any other sinfully rich and delicious pie?
If you love pie, but avoid making crust from scratch because it seems daunting at best, here are some tips to help alleviate some of those concerns. Soon you’ll be making pie crust like a pro.
1. Use a pastry blender or a couple of forks to work the shortening or butter into the flour mixture. It is time to add the water when the flour mixture resembles coarse meal. The pieces of shortening shouldn’t be any larger than peas.
2. Add cold water a little at a time until all of the flour mixture is moistened and will hold together when pinched. If the dough is too dry it can crack easily. However dough that is too moist will not be as flaky.
3. Remember, you are not making bread here. There is no need to knead the dough. Doing so can produce a tough crust.
4. If time allows, chill the dough for about 30 minutes before rolling it out. This will make rolling easier.
5. If you have trouble rolling out the dough, try doing it between two sheets of waxed paper.
6. Roll from the center out to the edges, turning a quarter turn for each roll until your crust is about 1/8 inch thick all around.
7. Use a bigger pie crust recipe than called for. For example, if you’re making a 9 inch pie, use a recipe for a 10 inch crust. This will insure that there is plenty of crust to trim and use for patching or cutting out decorative shapes, if desired.
8. The easiest way to transfer the crust to the pie pan is to simply remove the top piece of waxed paper if you used that method for rolling it out. Otherwise, place the crust on a piece of waxed paper. Then place the pie pan upside down on the dough and flip the whole thing over. You are now ready to nestle the dough into the pan and crimp the edges.
9. Place the pie pan on a baking sheet to help catch drips and to make transferring the pie in and out of the oven easier.
10. If the crust browns too quickly, fold a large square of foil in half. Cut a large half-moon from the folded edge. Open it up and place over the pie. The edges will be protected but the filling will still be exposed to the heat.
11. But most importantly remember…Even if your crust doesn’t look perfect, it will still taste great and your family will greatly appreciate the effort.
Use any basic 10 inch crust recipe for this pie.
Spicy Pumpkin Orange Pie
Makes one (9 inch) pie
1 (15 oz.) can pumpkin puree
3/4 cup dark brown sugar
1 1/2 teaspoons ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon ground cloves
Pinch of freshly grated nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ground cayenne pepper
1 teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
1 (12 oz.) can evaporated milk
2 large eggs, beaten
1 (10 inch) pie crust, unbaked
Preheat oven to 425. Fit the 10 inch pie crust into a 9 inch pan, trimming the sides as necessary and then crimping as desired.
In a mixer bowl, combine pumpkin puree, brown sugar, spices and orange zest. Beat on medium speed until all is well incorporated.
Gradually add the milk, being careful not to slosh while mixing. Once the mix is well incorporated, add the eggs one at a time until mixture is smooth.
Place the pie pan on a baking sheet with sides. Carefully, pour the pumpkin mixture into the pie shell, taking care not to get it too full.
Carefully place the baking sheet in the oven. Bake the pie for 15 minutes and then turn the heat down to 350. Bake for another 40-50 minutes or until center is set.
Cool completely on a wire rack. Chill leftovers.
If desired, serve with fresh whipped cream or Cool Whip.
Jill Meredith – Author
Jill is a foodie and freelance writer who lives in Broken Arrow with her husband, their daughter and some furry family members. She loves spending time in the kitchen developing new recipes and reading cookbooks like novels. Besides writing for TulsaFood.com, Jill also writes monthly food related columns for Oklahoma Magazine and several weekly articles for Examiner.com. She loves sharing her knowledge and has even taught cooking classes.