Thursday, April 26, 2012

Mini Pies

A couple weeks ago I had the pleasure of 
getting together with a fellow blogger, and great friend to make mini pies. 
You can visit her blog over at Baking Yummies.

So the key to a good pie, is a good crust!
And that's exactly what she taught me how to make
First, correct measurements with baking is key!
Normally, I run when math is involved, 
but when it comes to food, i can adapt

TIP #1 
don't scoop your measuring cup into the flour
it causes it to become packed and heavy
instead gently push your flour into your measuring cup
and then lightly slide your finger over the top to even it out
seriously, big difference in the weight
and you want a light cup of flour
not a heavy one

TIP #2
In fact if there's only one thing you remember
make sure it's this!
In fact, after each time you work with it
put it back in the fridge to get cold again
I think we re-refrigerated our butter and dough about 10 times
before it went into the oven
cold butter makes your crust flaky!

And lets just face it, Friends don't let Friends eat soft, limpy crust

TIP #3
cook your fruit filling
it draws out more of the juices
maybe this is a given for some people
but it wasn't for me
we chose blueberries for our filling
* Remember it must be cool before putting into your pie crust. 
We used a freezer to help speed up the cooling process

TIP #4
bake with a sleeping toddler
I don't even think I need to elaborate on that one

TIP #4
Use plastic wrap and parchment paper to roll out your dough
it doesn't stick to your dough and helps reduce the amount of extra flour that goes into your dough

TIP #5
Refrigerate your dough in between each roll out

TIP #6
make sure you only roll out our dough a minimal number of times
each roll out lessens the chance for flaky crust

TIP #7
Forking the edges is not just for decoration
it guarantees the filling is sealed into the mini pie

TIP #8 
after you egg wash and cinnamon sugar the tops and edges
poke a little letter to tell what kind of pie it is

TIP #9
don't feel like you have to bake them all at once
freeze them right after egg-washing!
first freeze them overnight straight on an uncovered baking sheet
and then transfer to zip-locs the next day
This way you can just pull one out of the freezer and bake as an individual serving

TIP #9
remember to poke some extra holes with a fork
on top before you bake or else filling will break through the fork seal

TIP #10
baking on the bottom rack of your oven heats the bottom of your pies, 
top rack heats the top of your pie
so rotate 20 minutes on bottom, and then 10 minutes on top 
so both parts of your pie are browned

And yes, they taste as good as they look

Thanks, Christine
You're a great teacher and I'll be coming over again soon!

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