Paula's Pie Project Blog

52 different pies in 52 weeks

Pie #58- Strawberry February 10, 2013

My friend Angie picked out this recipe on Thursday evening and by Friday morning we were in the kitchen together. She loves old fashion things- including her pie crusts.  Strawberries were ripe and on sale in the grocery stores.  She picked up the berries and I supplied the crust and within a few short hours we were enjoying this refreshing, delicious strawberry pie.

Here is the link to the recipe:   http://www.recipe.com/strawberry-pie/

With my new rolling pin in hand… one that I rescued from an antique shop a couple of miles down the street from my house… we were off to create a mid-winter delight.

Rolling out the dough with my new rolling pin

Rolling out the dough with my new rolling pin

The perfect pie crust

The perfect pie crust

Angie hulling the strawberries

Angie hulling the strawberries

Beautiful berries!

Beautiful berries!

Busted! Berrry taster!

Busted! Berry taster!

Showing off our prize

Showing off our prize

Looks like summer to me!

Looks like summer to me!

Fresh berries in the pie shell

Fresh berries in the pie shell

Whisking the strawberry gelatin into the sugar and cornstarch mixture

Whisking the strawberry gelatin into the sugar and cornstarch mixture

Pouring the gelatin mixure on to the berries

Pouring the gelatin mixture on to the berries

Pie before dinner with Angie!

Pie before dinner with Angie!

Pie #58- Strawberry

Pie #58- Strawberry

Ready to eat!

Ready to eat!

Personal Notes:

  • Everything about this pie is simple and basic. Strawberries, gelatin, cornstarch and sugar. Ahhh, an easy pie to make. The only time involved was waiting the two hours for the gelatin mixture to set. It proved to be very simple and surprising more delicious than I had expected.
  • We left out the strawberry extract, since we did not have it on hand and really didn’t miss it.
  • Three of my four boys loved this pie. The surprise was that Nate, who is normally my fruit-aholic, did not care for it because he does not like gelatin products. On the other hand, my regular non-pie-eater Henry, LOVED it since he is big on jello.
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Pie #57- Parmesan and Spinach

Filed under: 2013 Pie Project,Pie #57- Parmesan & Spinach,Savory Pies — paulaspieproject @ 1:08 pm
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Rolling dough with my broken rolling pin, this is how #57 started out.  It is do-able, but not ideal. I have had this baby since my single days of living alone in my Lakewood apartment. It was a housewarming gift from my mother, the pie queen.  Sadly, it looks as if it is time for this beloved kitchen utensil to go into retirement.

My broken tool!

After starting out 2013 with four sweet pies in a row, I was glad to finally welcome the first savory pie of the year. I found this recipe on Food Network’s website a few years back and was eager to try it out.

http://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/emeril-lagasse/parmesan-and-spinach-pie-recipe/index.html

Cooking th filling

Spinach, onion, bacon & parmesan on the stovetop

Pie pastry in a springform pan

Pie pastry in a springform pan

Adding the filling to the pastry shell

Adding the filling to the pastry shell

Ready for the oven

Top layer of pastry now on. Ready for the oven

Pie #57- Parmesan and Spinach

Pie #57- Parmesan and Spinach

Personal Notes:

  • I used the bacon instead of pancetta since I had it on hand. My family loves this particular pork product so I added 1 cup instead of the 1/4 cup  in hopes that it would offset the huge amount of spinach that was in the pie. (The boys were less than impressed.)
  • When baked, this became a really dense pie. I felt like I was getting two servings of vegetables in my one serving slice.
  • Yum! I would definitely make this one again. I happen to serve it for dinner one evening, but I would definitely make it for lunch or breakfast.
 

Pie #56- Fudge Nut January 24, 2013

Filed under: 2013 Pie Project,Pie #56- Fudge Nut,Sweet Pies — paulaspieproject @ 4:29 pm
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On Saturday evening, our family had been invited to a dinner party for 16 hosted by Bob and Kathryn Hunter. This meant I needed to bake two pies to feed our group. Coming off of my four-hour pie from the previous post, I was desperate to find a chocolate pie that I could whip out in far less time.

A good friend of mine from my Ohio days, Lisa Blidar (Llama Lisa), sent me a little pie recipe book for Christmas this past year. Lisa and her husband Ron now live in Colorado near my two younger brothers and their families.  And if I have my way this year, I will be baking a pie with her at some point. Let’s hope it is not out of a camp trailer.

Pie cookbook Llama Lisa Blidar

Simple pie recipe

I used my mom’s crust recipe. (See below.) With the exception of the pecan garnish on top of one, these Fudge Nut pies are the same.

JAN MOM’S PIE PASTRY

  • 1 cup flour + 2 tablespoons
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/3 cup Crisco vegetable oil
  • 2 tablespoons cold water

Mix flour, salt and oil with a fork. Add water and form into a ball. Roll between two pieces of wax paper. Peel top layer of wax paper off and flip other layer of wax paper and rolled dough onto a 9″ pie pan. Form decorative crust. (Poke holes around rim of crust if single). Bake for 12-14 minutes at 400° or until golden brown if recipe asks for a “baked pastry shell”. Cool on a wire rack.

This is one of two pie crusts I made since I doubled the recipe.

This is one of two pie crusts I made since I doubled the recipe.

Beautiful fresh eggs from the Rudin family that went into our pies.

Beautiful fresh eggs from the Rudin family that went into our pies.

My one bowl filling. All the ingredients are in there. Note the recipe was doubled.

My one-bowl filling. All the ingredients are in there. Note the recipe was doubled.

Same filling just garnished differently.

Same filling just garnished differently.

Both pies baking in the oven. Wow. Look how high they rose!

Both pies baking in the oven. Look how high they both rose!

Pie #56- Fudge Nut

Pie #56- Fudge Nut

Ready to eat. Fudge Nut Pie

Ready to eat with ice cream!

Enjoying the pie project with Fr. Brian and the Hunter and Rudin families!

Enjoying the pie project with Fr. Brian and the Rudin and Hunter families! Thanks for a fun evening!

Personal Notes:

  • A HUGE thank you to the Hunter family for the gracious invite and delicious dinner. What a fun evening it was!
  • Thanks also to the Rudin family chickens for the tasty eggs. I will trade left-over carpet samples (to keep your chicken feet warm) for fresh eggs any time! They are liquid gold. A dozen doesn’t last long at our house.
  • Love the recipe book, Lisa! There will be more pies coming out of this little paper treasure!
  • This pie was EASY and delicious. All of the dry ingredients came straight out of my pantry with no extra trip to the grocery store needed. Between the pie crusts and the filling, this took me about 35 minutes to assemble.
  • This is another version of a chocolate pecan pie…. chocolate + pecan= soooooo good!
 

Pie #55- Chocolate S’mores with Cherry Jubilee Sauce

Note to self: Always read recipe ahead of time and plan accordingly.

Truly, I loved the idea of this pie because s’mores just scream FUN!.  Who doesn’t love a s’more- whether you are camping or making one with graham crackers smothered with Nutella and Marshmallow Cream?

Travis and I had invited one of our favorite, FUN! work colleagues over for dinner. We both have had the pleasure of collaborating with the amazingly talented and always jovial John Warfel. Travis and John worked together when they were at Wirestone and more recently, John and I have worked together on product photo shoots for Scentsy. It’s always a good time when you are assigned to work on a project with J5.

Nothing like a fine meal and a good pie to impress a self-proclaimed sweet tooth. John was familiar with the 2010 Pie Project, so he came in with some high expectations. Needless to say, I pulled out all the stops for this guest and his family.

I pulled out my go-to pie book, Pie by Ken Haedrich and found this FUN! recipe. Back in 2010, I made the base recipe, Chocolate Mousse Chiffon Pie as my Pie #12. This one for Pie #55- Chocolate S’mores Pie with Cherry Jubilee Sauce just had a few more steps added to the recipe.

Pie #55- Chocolate S'mores Pie recipe

Chocolate Mousse Chiffon Pie Recipe

Home made graham cracker crust

Home made graham cracker crust

Coffee, butter and melted chocolate mixture

Coffee, butter and melted chocolate mixture

Whisking in the egg yolks after the mixture has cooled.

Whisking in the egg yolks after the mixture has cooled.

Close up of the texture

Close up of the texture

Stiff beaten egg whites + sugar

Stiff beaten egg whites + sugar

I actually had to heat up the mousse a bit since it got so cold during the cooling off process.

This mousse got too cold, thanks to the frigid air temperatures outside. I had to heat it up on the stove top in order to get it smooth enough to mix it with the egg/sugar mixture.

Now it's time to whip the cream

Now it’s time to whip the cream

Now ready to mix the whipping cream in with the new mixture.

Now ready to mix the whipping cream in with the new mixture.

Cold marshmallows in my refrigerator

Cold marshmallows in my refrigerator

Adding the cold marshmallows to the mousse chiffon

Adding the cold marshmallows to the mousse chiffon

The chocolate mousse chiffon now in the graham cracker pie shell topped with mini chocolate chips.

The chocolate mousse chiffon now in the graham cracker pie shell topped with mini chocolate chips.

My pie "quick set" method. Thanks to Mother Nature's 8 degree day.

My pie “quick set” method. Thanks to Mother Nature’s 8 degree day.

Ready to eat!

Ready to eat!

The Warfel family!

The Warfel family!

Alex Warfel's pie art!

Alex Warfel’s pie art!

The blackboard wall in our dining room. LOVE this!

The blackboard wall in our dining room. LOVE this!

Pie #55- Chocolate S'mores Pie with Cherry Jubilee Sauce. Happy Leftovers!

Pie #55- Chocolate S’mores Pie with Cherry Jubilee Sauce. Happy Leftovers!

Personal Notes:

  • The other title for this pie could be, Pie #55- the FOUR Hour Pie.Why I didn’t reread my own previous post on Pie #12- Chocolate Mousse Chiffon Pie is beyond me. My personal notes on that post say it all, “Making this pie was a little time-consuming.  It took me a couple of hours from start to finish with some down time interspersed while I waited for the fudge sauce to congeal.  Once completed, it still needed at least 4-6 hours in the refrigerator to completely “set”.  So, if you plan on making this pie, give yourself plenty of time.”  If you count the grocery shopping, all the prep work, the home made graham cracker crust, the melting, cooking, cooling  and waiting plus the extra steps that turn this into a Chocolate S’mores Pie with Cherry Jubilee Sauce, give yourself about four hours.
  • Oh, yeah, the four hours doesn’t count for the fact the recipe wants you to let the mousse chiffon sit for at least 6 hours or overnight. THAT didn’t happen. There happened to be sub-zero temperatures outside that day and I did a pie quick freeze on my patio two hours before our guests arrived. My pie was able to “set” with mother nature’s helping hand.
  • Is it worth it? YES, definitely! And the Cherry Jubilee Sauce on top is pretty out of this world!
 

#54- Chocolate Pecan Whiskey January 15, 2013

It’s when I have a pie like this that I begin to convince myself I should be making a pie a week for the rest of my life, not just in 2013! Things this good should be eaten weekly, or at least until I am diagnosed with diabetes. Let’s hope I am years away from that. Ha!

I love trying new recipes and this pie proved to be one that knocked it out of the ballpark for me. This one was amazing! All the flavors of chocolate, pecans and whiskey were in each and every bite. And even though I have no idea from what magazine or cookbook I cut this recipe out of, it definitely will be tagged now in a new category as one of my favorites.

My pie crust this time around was the Basic Flaky Pie Pastry from cookbook, Pie, by Ken Haedrich. Also, I should note two other things. One- that I accidentally added 1/2 cup more cornsyrup than the recipe called for, but rather than starting over, I just forgave myself for the mistake and moved on. And two- whipping cream was optional, but in my opinion is a must. This pie is so very rich that the fresh whipped cream really helped me quickly devour my piece and want to indulge myself with seconds.

Basic Flaky Pie Pastry Recipe

Chocolate Pecan Whiskey Pie Recipe

Pie crust + whiskey = Yum!

Pie crust + whiskey = Yum!

Let 'er Buck! Hats off to Pendleton, Oregon whiskey!

Let ‘er Buck! Hats off to Pendleton, Oregon whiskey!

The chocolate, pecan and whiskey filling

Oven ready.

Oven ready.

Didn't come out as pretty as I had hoped. My pie crust shield prevented the crust from burning, but smashed the crust in the process.

Didn’t come out as pretty as I had hoped. My pie crust shield prevented the crust from burning, but smashed the crust in the process.

Serving up pie!

Serving up chocolate pecan whiskey pie!

Pie with Danielle!

Pie with friends!

 

Pie #53- Winter Pie January 7, 2013

A big shout out to my good friend, Sharon Weis, who gave me the recipe book Rustic Fruit Desserts by Cory Schreiber and Julie Richardson for my birthday back in 2010.  The subtitle on this book says “crumbles, buckles, cobblers, pandowdies and more”.  Although I have yet to bake a buckle or a pandowdie, the “more” portion of the subtitle includes some really incredible recipes for pie.

The winter pie filling includes dried figs, apples, pears and cranberries- all fruit that is in season now. I also liked the idea of baking this pie in a springform pan. My last springform pan pie was Pie #51- Coffee Toffee Pie. And as Travis says, that was a restaurant grade quality dessert. This pie I suspect will not disappoint.

Here’s the recipe.

#53 Winter pie recipe

#53 Winter pie recipepg2

Folding the crust into the springform pan

Folding the crust into the springform pan

Mixing the beautiful colors of the winter pie filling

Mixing the beautiful colors of the winter pie filling

Filling in the crust

Crumb topping!

Crumb topping!

Out of the oven. Look at that crust!

Out of the oven. Look at that crust!

Top view.

Top view.

Ready to eat. Where is my fork?

Ready to eat. Where is my fork?

Best part is sharing- with friend and amazing musician, Chris Guitierez and Chad and Erica Dryden

Best part is sharing- with friend and amazing musician, Chris Guitierez and Chad and Erica.

These boys dig their pie.

These boys dig their pie.

Henry eats pie!!!!

Henry eats pie!!!!




 

Unofficial Start- Turkey pasties

Filed under: 2013 Pie Project,2013- Unofficial Start,Savory Pies — paulaspieproject @ 2:25 pm
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When I decided to pony up for round two of the pie project, my husband was thrilled beyond belief.  We began thumbing through old recipes from 2010 and tried to figure out which pies I needed to incorporate into this year’s edition. That’s where this pie started.

Travis was so excited for the upcoming Pie #53 that one evening he jumped right in and decided to make Cornish pasties. We had extra turkey left over from our post-Christmas feast. He made the filling, I made the crusts and TADAAA….turkey pasties! No recipe on this one- all ad-lib. Situation normal in the kitchen whenever my husband does the cooking. How fun for me to start the year off making a pie with my sweetie pie. Love you, Travis!

The pastie filling

The pastie filling

I used a salad plate to make a circular cut-out from the dough.

I used a salad plate to make a circular cut-out from the dough.

Travis fills the pastie with the delicious turkey, celery, carrot and onion filling.

Travis fills the pastie with the delicious turkey, celery, carrot and onion filling.

Brushing the pastie with egg.

Brushing the pastie with egg.

The finished product!

The finished product!