Tuesday, July 21, 2009

I Am No Longer Pie Crust Challenged...



For many years, I have been crippled by my inability to proper make good pie crust. It was a condition that I have struggled with day in and day out - a problem that only grew with each continued failure or each Thanksgiving moment when I chose graham cracker crumbs over the true McCoy. There were many moments that I struggled with this affliction. There were times when I jokingly played along when pastry chef friends while they would marvel at each other's buttery flakiness while I stood, looking longingly, into darkness. But I knew with great resolve and an overly unjustifiable sense of arrogance, I would some day succeed...

My friends, that day has come... and gone. (I actually figured out pie crusts months ago, its just that I haven't cooked one since, so I figure I'd make this post more dramatic than it actually is.)

So armed with a flaky crust and a shitload of tasty dark maroon cherries, I made Sexy Dark Cherry Pie. I also made Sexy Dark Mini Cherry Pies because mini versions of stuff is just cool.

Before we launch straight into the pics, I want to share some basic tips with people on fixing their pie crusts. So, this is what you need to know:

Basic Pie Crust Rules aka How To Not Be A Pie Crust Cripple:
1. Everything NEEDS to be COLD! Cold butter, cold shortening, cold water.
2. All your ratios need to be WEIGHED out, not eyeballed. It's simple: 3lbs flour, 1lb butter, 1lb shortening, big dash of salt and 1 cup cold water. This will make approximately 4 closed 9-inch pies, or 8 open ones...DUH.
3. Tiny peas of peas of fat = good, golf ball shaped fat = no good.
4. Let the dough chill for a while before using: an hour or a day or a week.
5. All pies that are open faced or set quickly need to have a prebaked bottom, all others including fruit pies do not.
6. Find a hot girl with little hands to crimp the crusts on the mini pies because my ham fists aren't good at it.
7. Pie filling is supposed to taste like fruit, not fruit rollup. Use good and fresh fruit for filling. Use good amounts of acid (lemon juice and peel) and salt to enhance true fruit sweetness. You can also cut some sweetness from filling with a little wine, too. I splashed tasty Sequoia Grove Cab into my cherry pie filling.

Onto the pics:

Big Cherry Pie

Mini Cherry Pies

Ooey gooey Cherry bowl of action


Mini Pie.

More Mini Pies!!!
(Yes, some had a little leakage due to unproper crimping.
It's because of my man hands and inability to crimp in a muffin pan.)

The Big Hot Food Porn Sexy Dark Cherry Pie

5 comments:

  1. Loved this post! I think I'm pie crust challenged myself. Need to get over it and just do it. I'm wanting to make mini pies myself (but with a dumpling maker!), and have a load of peaches and strawberries. I think I see my weekend project in the works. :)

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  2. Thanks for the pics. What did you use as a coating on the top...cream? egg? and at what point did you add it? If I can get that figured out I'll finally have this thing figured out. Cream seems to scorch too fast, milk doesn't color much at all. Thanks again - Stephanie

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  3. cookerguyJuly 22, 2009

    #6 You should always have a hot chick on hand for crimping a variety of things.
    #7 Love the add of Cab. You have class.
    @mycorpse has a beautiful twitrack

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  4. It was just an egg wash on top, nothing else.

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  5. I think the true graham cracker is made with graham flour, a combination of fine-ground white flour and coarse-ground wheat bran and germ. Graham crackers are often used for making s'mores and pie crusts.

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