The Fresh Loaf

News & Information for Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

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MANNA's picture

Fruit Pie's

July 6, 2012 - 11:14am -- MANNA
Forums: 

I have been working on making pies. The crust is great and the fillings are coming out wonderful since I started using some tapoica as a thicking agent. My rustic pies came out very good and the bottoms were perfect. But, my pies in the pan were not so great. The bottoms were soggy. I know blind-baking them will help. Has anyone ever brushed the bottom with a simple syrup after blind baking for added insurance against the soggy crust?

 

 

Yeasty Boy's picture
Yeasty Boy

Hello. I'm a noob to this forum and I'd like first to thank everyone here for such informative content as I've found it rather easy to navigate and research the information necessary to score a perfect success with my very first baking effort ever, and to produce the finest pizza I have ever had the priveledge to bake and eat.

linder's picture

Looking for a Recipe for 'Chess' Pie

November 15, 2011 - 1:49pm -- linder

My father-in-law is coming to visit around new year's, and I would like to make his favorite pie.  He calls it chess pie.  I believe it is basically just made out of the 'goo' that surrounds a pecan pie(basically corn syrup, butter and eggs), but I'm not sure.  Has anyone else heard of this pie?  Does anyone have a recipe for same?  If not,  I think I'll stumble around and try making a pie just from the pecan pie recipe I have.  Thanks.

Linda

evth's picture
evth


 



 


Yes, this is one adaptable pastry dough: genesis - empanadas, second form -  apple pie,  fin - quiche. I have worked this modified version of Cafe Azul's Pastry Dough (see my apple pie blog for the recipe) into so many baked goods. Versatility is the key to a good recipe in my baking heart. It is no wonder that this pastry dough and I were just meant to be.

Since this is a high-yield dough (it is enough for two double crust pies or singles), you can freeze what you don't use. After making the apple pie, I froze two mounds of dough that were left over. The night before I was ready to make the quiche, I thawed the mounds in the fridge and in the morning was able to quickly roll them out for my tart pans with relative ease. I sing praises to thee, my dough of wonder!

As for the quiche, it is a fairly simple recipe. Here is my own adapted set of instructions for the filling, but you can make it your own according to what you have on hand. For example, you can include bacon or ham, drained and chopped cooked spinach, sauteed peppers or onions, etc. Don't get carried away, though. Less is more, in my book.

1) Saute a package of sliced mushrooms (I use baby portabellos)
2) Chop a handful of green onions (3 or so stalks) 
3) 1/2 cup of shredded cheese - use more or less depending upon your fondness for fromage (I use Gruyere) 

For the custard, I like to use Michael Ruhlman's ratio of 3 eggs, 1/2 cup of cream and 1 cup of milk per tart. In a mixing bowl, whisk these together until smooth, salt and pepper to taste, and add a small grating of nutmeg.

After you roll out your dough, arrange the dough in a shallow tart pan. Scatter onto the crust the green onions, cheese and half of the mushrooms. Pour in half the custard, and layer the last of the mushrooms and green onions on top. Then add the rest of the custard, filling the pan up to about 3/4. Then sprinkle on the rest of the cheese. Carefully, place the pan on a baking sheet, and bake in a preheated oven of 400°F for 45-60 minutes, depending on your oven's temperature. When I made my quiche I forgot to use my trusty baking stone, and so the bottom crust came out a bit soft. I recommend that if you've got a stone, place it under your tart pan and baking sheet to ensure a crispy bottom crust. A golden and puffy quiche means that it's finished baking.



Voila!

evth

evth's picture
evth



A modified version of Cafe Azul's Pastry Dough makes a terrific pie crust. This recipe will yield enough dough for two 9-inch double crusts or four single crusts. Yes, it is a lot of dough so make a few pies or freeze the extra. Use four sticks of butter as the original recipe states for an insanely rich - think puff pastry - pie crust. Or knock the butter down like I did to two and half or three sticks (this is my only change to the crust recipe). Divide the dough into four mounds and wrap them individually before putting them into the refrigerator. Let it rest for at least 1+1/2 hours. Be prepared to be amazed with how easy it is to roll out beautiful pie crust that is flaky, tender and buttery. Click below for the dough recipe:


http://www.epicurious.com/recipes/food/views/Cafe-Azuls-Pastry-Dough-107241


Now let's turn to the main part of the apple pie recipe (i.e. filling, baking times, etc.). I followed Rose Levy Beranbaum's recipe from the Joyofbaking.com except that I substituted her pate brisee (short crust pastry) for a modified version of Cafe Azul's Pastry Dough. Click below for the apple pie recipe: 


http://www.joyofbaking.com/ApplePie.html


To briefly sum it up (click on above link for the entire recipe), Rose's way is to first, let the seasoned apple slices sit in their juices. Next, drain them and keep the juice, cooking it down with butter. Finally, mix it all in with the slices and pour the filling into the pie shell. After you top it with the other half of the crust, crimp the edges. *Here's a variation I made to the recipe: brush the top crust with a lightly beaten egg (egg wash) and give it a sprinkling of raw sugar (e.g. Washed Raw, Turbinado or Demerara). Place the pie in the refrigerator for about twenty minutes before baking it in the pre-heated oven (425°F) for 45-55 minutes - baking time will depend upon your oven's temperature and any hot spots. Good tip from Rose: bake the pie using a pizza or bread stone on the bottom rack of the oven. Place a baking pan/sheet between the pie and the stone to guard against filling overflow. The stone ensures that the bottom crust is baked through – crispy and golden! *If you are using a glass or ceramic pie pan, and you are worried about it cracking or breaking after placing it on the hot stone, make sure the baking pan/sheet is at room temperature before placing it underneath the pie pan, or you can just forego chilling the pie altogether. Keep a foil ring handy in case the pie edges brown too quickly. 


As for apple varieties, I used a mixture of Fuji and Granny Smith apples. The filling was a tad runnier than I cared for (even after the pie rested) but made up for it with lots of nice concentrated apple and caramel flavors. Next time around I will use a greater assortment of apples in the pie. I will try cooking the apple slices and then cooling the mixture before adding it to the pie shell. 


Here's to a bountiful autumn harvest and more apple pies on the table!


Next post: Pain de mie

summerbaker's picture

Peach Pie

May 27, 2009 - 7:06pm -- summerbaker

Okay, I'm going to admit it.....  I'm just about the only one in my family with a sweet tooth!  One of my grandmothers had one but unfortunately she is no longer with us.  I realized that I was the sole family member left to carry her torch as I gradually noticed that I was the one who always got nominated to make desserts for our family gatherings.  It's not that I'm some kind of pastry chef, I'm just the only one who really enjoys making desserts.  So this is how I will preface yet another post from me in the "sweets" forum.

browndog's picture
browndog

Grandmother's Apple Cake

5 tablespoons plus 1/4 cup sugar

1 cup AP flour

1/2 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 egg

2 tablespoons milk

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature

2 medium baking apples

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

 

1. Set the oven to 400 degrees. Spray the bottom of a 10 inch cast iron skillet with cooking oil spray. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the sugar into the pan.

2. In a bowl, sift the flour, salt, and baking powder.

3. In another bowl, whisk the egg, milk, and vanilla.

4. In an electric mixer, beat the butter with 1/4 cup of sugar for one minute or until light. Remove the bowl from the mixer stand. Stir in one third of the flour, then one third of the milk. Add the remaining flour and milk in the same way.

5. Use the back of a spoon or your fingertips to spread the batter in the skillet - it will be thick and sticky.

6. Peel and core the apples. Slice them 1/8 inch thick. Starting at the outer edge, arrange the apples on the cake in slightly overlapping concentric circles.

7. In a small bowl, mix the remaining 3 tablespoons with the cinnamon. Sprinkle over the apples.

8. Bake the cake for 20 to 25 minutes or until the apples are tender and a skewer inserted into the cake comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 10 minutes.

9. With a wide metal spatula , loosen the edges and bottom of the cake from the pan. Place a large plate on top and invert the pan and cake together. Lift off the pan. Place another plate on top of the cake and invert it again, so the cake is right side up. Serve warm.

 

Be careful not to burn this cake!

Heirloom apples are a palette of the past. Their names reach across centuries: Ashmead Kernel, Cox Orange Pippin, Lamb Abbey Pearmain, Reine de Reinette, Sheepnose or Black Gilliflower. Their flavor does, too--either one in the mouth takes you to a tree in a stone-edged field, discussing apples with a man in leather and homespun.

Hudson's Golden Gems

Our neighbor Willis Wood makes cider from antique apples on a press bought new by his family in 1882.

The best cider comes from knowing the apples and how to combine them.

This cake uses 3 cups of it.

Willis boils fresh cider into syrup and jelly.

A little more than half way along the forest trail that leads from my house to the cider mill, the scent of apples meets us, pungent, sweet and vinegary, odd against the smell of fallen leaves.

Beth Hensperger's Fresh Apple-Walnut Loaf

Ingredients

1 tablespoon active dry yeast

2 tablespoons light brown sugar

1 cup warm water (105-115 F)

1 cup warm milk

6-6 1/2 cups unbleached all purpose flour or bread flour

2 medium-large tart cooking apples, peeled, cored, and coarsley chopped (2-3 cups)

1/2 cup dried currants

1/2 cup walnuts, coarsley chopped

2 tablespoons walnut oil

2 large eggs, at room temperature

2 teaspoons ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspons ground mace

1/2 teaspoon ground allspice

1 tablespoon salt

 

1. In a large bowl using a whisk or in the work bowl of a heavy duty electric mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, combine the yeast, brown sugar, warm water, warm milk, and 2 cups of flour. Beat until smooth, about 1 minute. Cover the bowl loosly with plastic wrap and let stand at room temperature until foamy, about 1 hour.

2. Add the apples, currants, walnuts, oil, eggs, cinnamon, mace, allspice, salt, and 1 cup more of the flour. Beat until creamy, about 2 minutes. Add the remaining flour, 1/2 cup at a time, until a soft dough that just clears the sides of the bowl is formed. Switch to a wooden spoon when necessary if making by hand.

3. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and knead until smooth and springy yet firm, about 5 minutes, dusting with flour only 1 tablespoon at a time as needed to prevent sticking. Push back any fruit or nuts that fall out during the kneading.

4. Place the dough in a greased deep container. Turn the dough once to coat the top and cover with plastic wrap. Let rise at room temperature until doubled in bulk, 1 1/2 - 2 hours.

5. Gently deflate the dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Grease two 9 by 5 inch loaf pans. Shape into two braided or regular loaves. Let rising pans till tops are an inch above rim of pan, about 45 minutes.

350 degrees for 45-50 minutes.

 

 

A wild apple tree is as gnarled and angular as an elderly aunt.

Most evenings deer gather beneath this tree, till the snows bury the remains of the season's apple crop.

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