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Old 07-24-08, 03:39 PM   #1
huerro
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Give me pie secrets!

I've managed to get myself into a pie-off this Sunday.

It's going to be a two pie format we'll each do a tart cherry pie and then a pie of our choice. The big problem is that my go to pies are both Autumn pies, one an apricot cranberry and the other an awesome apple cranberry.

My opponent is good. Probably too good (and she picked tart cherry which makes me think she's got something up her sleeve). I'm thinking my best hope is to give the judges the old switch-a-roo and make my baker's choice pie a savory one. Unfortunately, I've never made a savory pie before. Anybody have good chicken pot pie recipe or tips? Do I go with what I know or take a gamble?


Apricot cranberry


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Old 07-24-08, 04:10 PM   #2
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chilled butter grated into chips to use in the crust. Or lard! The chips melt away and leave flaky buttery crust behind.

I have a really cool monkfish/potato pie recipe. Can't remember the last time I saw monkfish though.
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Old 07-24-08, 05:09 PM   #3
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Lovely pies. I'd taste-test those any day!

Tart cherries are potentially hard to do: you have to sweeten them correctly and use the right amount of thickener, get that thickener evenly dispersed. You could end up with a runny mess. You have been warned.

Ever make a galette? It's a farmhouse pie, i.e., w/o a pan. I make a fabulous blueberry galette. You make a 2-cup-flour pie crust, pile the fruit in the center, brush the top of the crust with butter, maybe a little for the berries, sprinkle a little sugar over the top, and bake. It has been flaky every time. Our local berries were first available last week. You might find some local too. For this recipe, I rarely use thickener. I have used a bit of crushed biscotti (almond or vanilla, not anise. your pie could be thumbs-down for just the anise) to help absorb the flavor--maybe a couple tablespoons. But, usually, it's naked blueberries.

[Edit 7-25-08]: Egads, I forgot that I usually make this with fresh berries. I just made one with frozen berries, and, now I have galette soup with a lovely top-crust on my hands. I think that using some tapioca flour/starch will be sufficient--use enough to coat the frozen fruit, and see how that works for you.

Presentation is difficult on this one. Because, it's supposed to look "rough". Extra decor like leaves, etc, completely ruins the whole beauty. But, others won't know that unless they know galette.

compliments of Deborah Madison, from the "Vegetarian Cooking for Everyone" cookbook.

2c flour (all purpose or whole wheat pastry, not the same as regular whole wheat)
1/2 tsp salt
1T sugar
12T cold, unsalted butter, cut into small pieces (lots of fat is the key to flaky!)
1/3 to 1/2 cup ice water, as needed

Mix flour, salt, sugar. Cut in the butter by hand or using a mixer with a paddle attachment, leaving some pea-sized chunks. Sprinkle the ice water over the top by the tablespoon and toss it with the flour mixture until you can bring the dough together into a ball. Press it into a disk and refrigerate for 15 minutes if the butter feels soft.

To form: roll it out on a lightly floured counter into a 14-inch irregular circle about 1/8 inch thick. Fold it into quarters and transfer it to the back of a sheet pan or a cookie sheet w/o sides. Unfold it. It will be larger than the pan.

Add fruit, leaving a border 2-4 inches wide. Fold edges over fruit, overlapping them as you go. Depending on how much of an edge you have left, the galette will be partially or completely covered, almost like a two-crust pie. Brush the top with melted butter (about 1T) or an egg beaten with a little cream or milk. Sprinkle it heavily with sugar--about 2T---and bake.

The Blueberry was my idea; it's not in this cookbook. I use at most 1T of sugar for the blueberry; just my personal preference. Peach works well too. Add a few=10-12 raspberries for contrast color (I think this makes it peach melba). I personally like the flavor of nectarines better---deeper flavor to my taste buds, and, you don't have to peel the skin.

Mmm, pie. I hope there aren't many pie threads this summer!

I have a fabulous rhubarb-strawberry recipe, works perfect every time. But, we are out of the rhubarb season. Have any frozen rhubarb?
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Old 07-24-08, 05:10 PM   #4
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chilled butter grated into chips to use in the crust. Or lard! The chips melt away and leave flaky buttery crust behind.

I have a really cool monkfish/potato pie recipe. Can't remember the last time I saw monkfish though.
P.S. Monkfish is on the don't eat list; low populations.
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Old 07-24-08, 06:11 PM   #5
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Thanks!

I actually make a pretty good blueberry pie and when I do it I get to show off my latticing skills. I think we're still a week or two away for local ones, but I'll see what's at the farmer's market this Saturday. I'll definitely try the gallete some day soon.

I hadn't heard of grating the butter before either, but it makes sense. Maybe I'll do a practice run tomorrow or Saturday.
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Old 07-24-08, 06:44 PM   #6
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Oh, lattice is nice. Do you have a fancy cutter, or, do you use a knife, for straight edges?

Please don't tell me you have one of those stamps...that's totally cheating. I'd take off 2 points if I was a judge.
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Old 07-24-08, 07:34 PM   #7
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You could pull a switch and make a cream pie (banana cream, coconut cream, etc.).
Also a good blueberry pie served ala mode with Bryers vanilla is to die for.
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Old 07-24-08, 07:36 PM   #8
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Pi is never ending. 3.141 and on forever!!
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Old 07-24-08, 07:38 PM   #9
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Use a ceramic pie plate.
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Old 07-24-08, 08:10 PM   #10
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sprinkle sugar on top near end baking
*too soon for burning of sugar tops*
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Old 07-24-08, 08:55 PM   #11
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Use a ceramic pie plate.
All my gear is in Texas. Including my pie plates, pastry cutter, rolling pin, and canvas. I'm probably going to go with whatever good will or the salvation army has. I'll look for ceramic though.
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Old 07-25-08, 07:06 AM   #12
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Throw a curveball, chance it and bake a shoofly pie.
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Old 07-25-08, 09:10 AM   #13
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I usually do apple pie. I will add 1-2 finely chopped (fresh, not pickled) habanero peppers to the apples. Tastes like apple pie, but has some heat to it.
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Old 07-25-08, 09:13 AM   #14
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My grandmother died and took the secret of her caramel merinque pie to the grave with her. I miss them both.
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Old 07-25-08, 10:26 AM   #15
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blueberry pie where the blueberries are used fresh, not cooked.
but merely tossed into a syrup that is warm and then put into a graham ******* crust.
this is a lovely fresh version of blueberry pie and is really popular at a local restaurant.
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Old 07-25-08, 11:29 AM   #16
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sweet_potato_pie
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Old 07-25-08, 01:19 PM   #17
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This thread is making me hungry!!
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Old 07-25-08, 11:20 PM   #18
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*bump*

I was so inspired, I made a galette using frozen berries from last year. If you use frozen fruit, use a thickener (I like tapioca flour/starch), for, I now have blueberry soup with a crispy top on my hands! I also edited the original post, in case someone didn't make it down this far.
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Old 07-26-08, 02:33 PM   #19
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I just got a call form my co-host/competitor and apparently we're going to have quite a crowd.

I've decided to go with Iraqi chicken chickpea turnovers for my baker's choice pie. If nothing else it will stand out for the judges and my friend is going to help me make a second batch so we have enough food for everyone.

Local blueberries aren't in yet so I'm going to follow busted knuckles suggestion and add a little habanero to my apple pie recipe as a non-competition pie to feed more people and because I love sweet and spicy food and really want to give this a try.

If any of you foosters want to come and are close to Baltimore, send me a pm for directions. Pie at 7pm.

And Flower Blossom, of course I lattice by hand.
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Old 07-26-08, 05:19 PM   #20
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I just got a call form my co-host/competitor and apparently we're going to have quite a crowd.

I've decided to go with Iraqi chicken chickpea turnovers for my baker's choice pie. If nothing else it will stand out for the judges and my friend is going to help me make a second batch so we have enough food for everyone.
Recipe?

Pics or it didn't happen!

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Local blueberries aren't in yet so I'm going to follow busted knuckles suggestion and add a little habanero to my apple pie recipe as a non-competition pie to feed more people and because I love sweet and spicy food and really want to give this a try.

If any of you foosters want to come and are close to Baltimore, send me a pm for directions. Pie at 7pm.


And Flower Blossom, of course I lattice by hand.
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Old 07-27-08, 10:13 PM   #21
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^^^my apple and cherry are in the foreground.



Well, I'm afraid I lost, but it was more an issue of strategy than pie making.

My cherry pie beat her cherry pie, but her second (apricot, blueberry, and raspberry from the farmers market) beat my second (Iraqi chicken and chickpea turnovers) by enough to take the crown. A couple of the judges didn't love the idea of the savory pie but damn it was delicious! I'll put the recipe up for Flower Blossom and anyone else who wants it tomorrow.

I also did a bonus pie with some habanero in my usual apple pie, as per Busted Knuckles suggestion, and it was outstanding! A great pie and a crowd favorite. I've no doubt if I had made this my second entry instead of the savories I would have won for sure.

A splendid time was had by all I had way too much pie and just enough wine. Thanks for all the suggestions and advice, foo.
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Old 07-27-08, 11:51 PM   #22
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Glad the habanero/apple pie worked out well. Think I will make one this week.
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Old 07-28-08, 11:17 AM   #23
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Wow. Impressive!!! That lattice work is beautiful.


BTW, never, ever read a pie-thread before breakfast.
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