When I invite people over for dinner or plan a family meal, I often approach the menu backwards…what’s for dessert? That’s just my inner sweet tooth driving the get-together, but I often bake a pie or tart to feature seasonal ingredients that I want to share while they are at their peak. It keeps family and friends sitting at the dinner table as long as possible, sharing stories, sipping wine or coffee. However, to make menu planning a little easier and frankly more “straight forward,” here is a primer on matching some of our best Wilton main dishes to favorite pies, marrying flavors and textures to make simple meals worth repeating or improvising to suit your taste and pantry.
Archive for the ‘Pie’ Category
There are just about as many techniques and recipes for making pies from scratch as there are types of pies which make the process a bit daunting for the novice. Even an experienced baker will shy away from the process merely because of the time it takes to get from mixing the pastry dough to cutting into the finished pie. But no doubt, the first time you pull out bubbling berries in a flaky crust or a stunning meringue topped masterpiece, you will understand that pie making is really pretty easy and ultimately worth the time and effort. Here are just a few tips on how to make a pie that have helped me over the years. Hopefully, it will convince you to reach for your rolling pin the next time you have an occasion for pie.
Pie dough freaks some people out, but when you have the right ratios of fat to flour and know how much to mix it, there’s nothing to fear. It’s quite simple, really!
Here is everything you’ll need to make perfect pie crust:
Cold butter, cold shortening, flour, salt, and water. That’s it!
I like to use a mixture of butter and vegetable shortening in my pie dough. Why? It’s similar to Wilton’s Buttercream Icing recipe which uses a combination of these 2 fats for delicious flavor with added stability against melting. The butter in my pie dough is going to give amazing flavor to my crust, but it melts at a lower temperature than shortening. The shortening will help with the flakiness of my crust because it will take longer to melt in the oven. The longer the melting takes, the more steam the fat will give off, and that steam is what pushes the dough apart, leaving behind flaky layers of pastry. So good!
1. PASTRY Wheel
Cut a pretty lattice with a pastry wheel. Ever wonder how people get that pretty ruffled edge on a lattice-topped pie? The fluted edge of the pastry wheel makes it easy to get this special effect.
2. pie crust impression mat
Sculpt your way to a fancy fluted edge with the Pie Crust Impression Mat! The edge of your pie will be Instagram ready when you use this impression mat. While there are many routes to a pretty crust, this mat is a super easy way to get a really cool effect. (Seriously, if you’ve ever played with Play-Doh, you can handle this mat).
3. PASTRY BRUSH
For a pretty shine, brush on egg wash to get that shiny golden brown goodness! It’s a simple step, but it makes all the difference for your finished pie.
When the trees start to change colors and the air fills up with the cool, sweet smell of leaves then you know it’s officially fall. Fall is my absolute favorite season for many reasons – bonfires, sweater-weather, and of course, the kick-off to the holiday season. And nothing quite says holiday like the classic fruit pie! So this fall, when you get ready to make your next fruit pie, remember these do’s and don’ts.
Ever wonder what it means to blind bake a pie? Here’s a quick glossary for some commonly-used pie terms and pan types.
“Easy as apple pie” is a cliché, but it’s a cliché for a reason! Apple pie is a classic dessert that is easy to master, and there are so many ways to put a twist on the recipe to suit your personal taste. In honor of National Apple Pie Day, here are the 3 different apple pie recipes to help you celebrate; plus tips and tricks for how to bake the perfect apple pie.
Gobble, gobble, gobble! The leaves have turned colors and dropped from the branches, which means Thanksgiving is just around the corner! Every year, I anticipate gorging myself with all the goodies at the colorfully decorated table. (more…)
I’m one of those people that can’t help but be in love with the idea of spreading love on Valentine’s Day. No matter how commercialized the holiday has become, it’s one that makes me feel good sharing extra love with the people that mean the most to me. One way I do that is through my love of cooking and baking. My own children get a taste of just how much they mean to me with an extra special breakfast of heart-shaped pancakes with sweet strawberry-orange sauce. (more…)