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Life of pie
Pie in this country can be both savory or sweet, it’s almost a colloquial term for anything mixed and baked, other than cakes. Traditionally, pie is simply any filling baked between layers of pastry. Fast forward to the present and a pie can have a single crust, or double crust, and that crust can be pastry, or cookie with a variety of textures and flavours mixed in.
However it is interpreted, dessert pies still top the list at fine dining establishments to fast food joints. Tradition still holds strong with pies like apple and lemon meringue being favourites, yet new delights are unstoppable in taste and texture. So whatever your desire there is certainly a pie out there for you.
PRE-BAKED FLAKY PIE CRUST
11/4 cups flour
1/2 cup shortening
1/4 cup water, or more
1/4 tsp salt
• Combine salt and flour add shortening and cut fat into flour until mixture resembles fine crumbs.
• Add water and bring dough together, wrap and refrigerate for one hour. • Preheat oven to 425F.
• Roll out dough to fit a nine inch pie plate, place pastry into plate, trim ends and crimp, line pastry with foil, fill with dried peas. • Bake for 15 minutes.• Remove foil and peas, lower heat to 350 and continue baking for 15 to 20 minutes, remove and cool.
LEMON MERINGUE PIE
Fresh lemon meringue pie is truly a treat, with the abundance of fresh lemons in our markets its a must try dessert!
3/4 cup fresh lemon juice
4 egg yolks
1/3 cup corn starch
1 tsp grated lemon zest
1 cup milk
11/4 cups granulated sugar
1 prebaked pie shell (see recipe above)
4 egg whites
1 inch piece of lime peel
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tsp cream of tartar
• Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
In a medium saucepan beat egg yolks with 11/4 cups of sugar until light in colour and sugar is melted, add cornstarch, stir well and add lemon juice and lemon peel.
• Stir in milk. • Cook mixture, stirring constantly, over medium heat until mixture comes to a boil. Remove from heat and cool.
• Pour lemon filling into pie shell. • Meanwhile make the meringue. Beat egg whites with lime peel until light and fluffy, sprinkle in sugar and continue beating, add cream of tartar and beat until stiff peaks form. • Remove lime peel.
• Spread meringue over top of pie, sealing the edges with the meringue by making sure meringue touches edge of crust.
• Bake pie in a preheated oven for 350 degrees, for about 30 minutes until meringue is golden. • Chill before serving. • Serves six to eight.
OLD FASHIONED APPLE PIE
1 recipe pie pastry dough (Using recipe above, double the quantities)
2 tbsp all purpose flour
2 tbsp brown sugar
1/2 tsp cinnamon (optional)
1/2 cup raisins (optional)
2 tbsp unsalted butter cut into small pieces.
• Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
• Divide pastry dough into two parts, refrigerate one part. Roll the other part to fit a nine-inch pie plate, refrigerate.
• Peel, core and cut apples into one-inch chunks.
In a large mixing bowl, combine flour, brown sugar and cinnamon.
• Add apples, toss to coat pieces evenly and add raisins.
• Heap the apples in the pie shell, piling them higher in the middle. Dot the apples with butter.
• Meanwhile roll the other pastry half into a 13-inch circle and cover the pie with the pastry dough, seal and crimp the edges.
• Cut eight small slashes in the top to let the steam escape.
• Bake in preheated oven for about 50 to 60 minutes until the crust is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling.
• Serve warm or at room temperature.
• Serves six to eight.
CARIBBEAN BLACK-BOTTOMED LIME TART
This tart is light tasting and delicious, the chocolate cookie crust adds a delicious flavour to the whole tart.
For the crust
20 chocolate cookies
4 tbsp melted butter
2 tbsp chopped almonds
For the filling
1 lb cream cheese
2/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 cup sour cream
11/2 tbsp lime zest
1 cup fresh lime juice
1 tsp vanilla extract
• Preheat oven to 350F.
• Finely crush cookies and almonds in a food processor, add melted butter and combine.
• Press mixture into the bottom of a nine-inch pie plate. Refrigerate until ready for use.
• With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese until creamy, add sugar, eggs and vanilla, beat until smooth, gently beat in sour cream. Lime zest and lime juice.
• Pour batter into cookie crust and bake for 40 to 50 minutes until cheesecake is slightly puffed and the centre is set.
Refrigerate for four hours or overnight.
• Serves eight to ten.
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