Tag Archives: pie

Me oh my, Blueberry Pie: a Lesson in Patience

I don’t have the greatest pie-making track record. My first attempt, an All-American apple pie, was a flop. I was a baking novice in high school. I misread the recipe, but I didn’t realize it until I had gotten to my grandparents’ house and cut into it. It was starchy and dry; two cups of flour instead of two tablespoons. Lesson learned: read the recipes more closely.

A month ago, I made a beautiful chocolate meringue pie; but when I cut into it, the inside pudding spread. I ended up with a delicious dessert soup, but it was not the pie I’d had in mind.

Determined to perfect my pie-making, I turned to fruit. Fruit pies tend to hold together better than custard pies, but will still fall apart if not fully cooled.

Patience is the most important ingredient in pies. If you choose to make your own pie crust, you have to let the dough chill for a few hours. After your beautifully smelling pie has been pulled out of the oven, the waiting game is on. I tend to sample my cooking as soon as I go, but with pies, you must have patience in order to allow the juices to cool and solidify.

This delicious blueberry pie was successful because I let it cool for over four hours. The mint and lime added freshness to the tart blueberries. As you an use a prepackaged crust, I like Martha Stewart’s recipe, found here.

Blueberry and Mint Pie

Ingredients

2 chilled pie crusts, 9 inches

4 cups blueberries

Zest of one lime

Juice of one lime

3 Tablespoons chopped mint

1/4 cup corn starch

1/2 cup sugar

1 egg, mixed with a splash of water, for egg wash

Roll out dough and set into 9 inch pie pan.

Carefully stir together blueberries, juice and zest of lime, corn starch and mint. Try not to pop the berries.

Pour berry mixture into crust, and sprinkle with sugar.

Top with crust. You can cover completely with top crust, create a lattice top or use a cookie cutter to cut out shapes to arrange on top of the berries, as I did.

Brush top crust with egg wash mixture for a browner, flakier crust.

Bake at 350* for 30 minutes. If crust browns too quickly, tent with foil.

Here’s where patience comes into play: let pie cool for four hours or longer. This will ensure a cohesive filling.

Enjoy your hard work and patience with a dollop of vanilla ice cream and sweet tea.

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Cheesy Chorizo Quiche

My first memory of quiche isn’t a romantic meeting of girl and eggy pie; I met pre-frozen mini quiches somewhere on the road of childhood, and wondered at the creamy, crusty little packages. These mass-produced quiches left me longing for something more. I knew these had such potential to be a buffet hero. And so versatile: ham, spinach, cheese. I have great plans for these eggy pies, I thought.

So years later, I’ve formulated my ultimate quiche, one with oozing cheese, creamy eggs and spicy Mexican chorizo. And nothing is better than marrying French techniques with Mexican flavors.

Cheesy Chorizo Quiche

Ingredients

8 ounces pork chorizo

1/2 onion, chopped

2 cups milk, boiling 

4 eggs

1 cup shredded cheese

1 pie crust, recipe below

Brown chorizo, and add onions. Cook until onions are soft.

Temper eggs with boiling milk: While whisking the eggs, pour a slow stream of the boiling milk down the side of the bowl. Work in about half of the milk. Once the egg mixture is warmed, stir in the rest of the milk.

Spread chorizo and onions in the bottom of the baked crust. Pour eggs over, and top with cheese.

Bake 350* for 30 minutes.

Pie Crust

Ingredients

1 1/2 cups all pupose flour

2 Tablespoons sugar

1 Tablespoon salt

1/2 cup vegetable oil

2 Tablespoons milk

Mix dry ingredients together. Slowly stir in the oil and milk.

Roll out on lightly floured surface. Press into desired baking dish (I used a rectangular tart pan).

Prick the bottom with a fork, and bake at 400* for 15 minutes.

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