Last year at this time I promised I would get really good at making pie and then pass along my wisdom.
Bad news. I didn’t make that much pie. I did make enough so that I don’t feel nervous any more when I have to roll out a crust. It helps that I bought a long, wooden rolling pin, the kind Alain, the chef/owner of La Bedaine bakery recommended. They are also called French rolling pins.
You’d be surprised what you can find at Ross for under $10. It was worth it. For some reason, dough doesn’t stick to the wooden rolling pin and it’s more conducive to less rolling rather than more and only going in one direction.
I found these really useful tips and excellent recipes on the Earth Balance website:
The Earth Balance folks reminded me to chill the crust before baking for at least an hour. They also recommend chilling the pastry cutter which I think was overkill.
Another weird place I found great inspiration for my deep dish apple pie? The Crate and Barrel e-mail that was attempting to sell me stuff:
Crate and Barrel included some tips from Cooks Illustrated, the magazine that advocates you dirty every single pot and pan in your kitchen and treat cooking like a difficult science experiment. I did appreciate their idea that I mixed pippins (hybrids of pectin-rich quinces) with red apples for sweetness.
So far I have made pecan pie with a press crust (the downside of rolling crust: flour all over my marble dining table), plus a double crust deep dish apple. Both pies came out super ugly but let’s face it, my heart’s not in it. Whose idea was it to stick (C)hannuka(h) and Thanksgiving together this year? Sure, it won’t happen again for 79,000 years. How does that help me this week?