Hoosier Sweet Cream Pie

Hoosier-Sugar-Cream-Pie-0510-recipe-xlI had never heard of this pie until I saw it on one of my food recipe sites.

It looked easy, and kind of old-fashioned.

So I gave it a try.

I’m sure there are a dozen or more “authentic” ones. I’m not sure where this one falls regarding that, but it was quite tasty.

So give it a try if you are inclined.

It’s sort of like a custard pie with a deeper creamy texture and a sweeter flavor.

INGREDIENTS:

  • A single pie crust
  • a bit of milk (2 tbsp)
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon (plus more for dusting)
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 1/2 cups half and half
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract

INSTRUCTIONS:

1. Adjust oven rack to center position and preheat oven to 375°F. Roll out crust. For a 9-inch pan your bottom crust should be around 11 inches in diameter. Place bottom crust in pie pan or dish. Flute edges and brush pie shell with milk. Refrigerate crust while you prepare filling.

2.In a large bowl mix together flour, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Stir in heavy cream, half and half, and vanilla until well incorporated. Pour into prepared pie shell and bake for 35 to 45 minutes or until crust is golden brown and the center of the pie is set. Dust with additional cinnamon, if desired. Cool for about 15 to 20 minutes before slicing.
SERVES: 8
SOURCE: Serious Eats
OVEN TEMP: 375°
OVEN TIME: 45 minutes
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A Peach of a Pie

lattice peach pieNothing says summer like peach pie.

And that’s getting harder to say because peaches aren’t at all what they used to be when I was a kid.

When I was young, a peach was heaven. It was a fragrant dark soft thing. The first bite caused a juice explosion and you worked hard to suck it all in. You glorified in every bite, sorry when you were down to the pit which you pulled free of every last strand of peach meat.

Now?

Peaches tend to be quite beautiful to look at and usually juiceless, or hard as rocks. They smell good and look good, but taste of nothing. They are probably excellent for packing and storage and that is how they are now bred.

The only ones that I have found that are good are the new white-fleshed variety. I find them with all the qualities of my childhood. I used them for this pie and I can say that I was quite satisfied.

INGREDIENTS:

  • One recipe for a double crusted pie dough. I have two you can find here and here.
  • 2 1/2 lbs of peaches, peeled, sliced (I used about 6)
  • 1 c sugar
  • 1 tbsp cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp lemon juice
  • A pinch of cinnamon, nutmeg and salt
  • 1 lg egg beaten
  • sugar for dusting

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Make the pie crust. Divide in two. Roll out the first and place in the pie plate (deep dish). Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until ready to fill.
  2. Roll out the second and then cut into 8 strips for the lattice (don’t omit this since this is part of why this pie works). (I found that I had nearly half of the 1/2 left after this so I wrapped it and threw it in the freezer for a rustic something or other later). Place the strips on some dusted parchment on a cookie sheet, cover with plastic and put in the fridge as well.
  3. Place all your peach slices in a large bowl with the cup of sugar. Set aside on the counter for 1 HOUR stirring occasionally to let the juices release.
  4. Drain the peaches in a colander, reserving 1/4 c of the juices. Place the peaches back in the bowl, with the saved juice, add the rest of the ingredients up to the egg, and mix until the spices and so on are thoroughly distributed.
  5. Take the cookie sheet with the lattice strips out about 5 minutes before using to let them warm a bit.
  6. Take the pie plate out and load in the peaches.
  7. Arrange the lattice atop, weaving 4 strips with 4 strips.
  8. Paint the lattice with the beaten egg and dust with sugar.
  9. Place a rimmed cookie sheet on the bottom shelf of the oven and pre-heat to 425°. Place the pie on the cookie sheet and bake about 25 minutes. Reduce temperature to 375° and continue for another 25-35 minutes until nice and bubbly.
  10. Place on a rack to cool.

SERVES: 8

NOTES: The point of the lattice and the removing some of the liquid is to avoid using a ton of cornstarch to thicken it, which allows more peach flavor. Use the reserved juice to drink or reduce and use for topping on ice cream. The lattice also lets some of the liquid steam away in the oven. While there was some initial liquid when first sliced, what there was, was little more than an 1/8th of a cup.

SOURCE: Adapted from Cook’s Illustrated

 

Ruby Rhubarb Pie

rhubarb-pie-610x458-1When Spring rolls around, I get hungry for rhubarb pie. And I’m a serious rhubarb person.

As a kid, we grew a couple of plants and we used to grab us a stalk or two and play a game of who could take the biggest bite without making a face. It’s sour as you know. Dipped in a cup of sugar, it’s delicious.

Baked in a pie it’s divine.

None of that “cutting the sour” with strawberries for me. I like my rhubarb unadulterated.

I’ve tried a few recipes. This was the best I’ve ever made. It was not runny, but not gummy. It was sweet without being really sweet. It was just a perfect rhubarb pie.

So give the much maligned “pie plant” a try.

INGREDIENTS:

  • One recipe for a double crust pie crust. (I have two basic recipes: Basic Pie Crust, and Another Pie Crust.
  • 2 lbs rhubarb, cut into bite size pieces (do not peel. If using frozen do not thaw beforehand) This is about 5 stalks give or take. You want about six cups I would say cut up. It’s not essential to be that accurate. You will be using a deep dish pie plate.
  • 1 c sugar, more or less, depending on how sweet you want it, and how close you are to the 2 lb limit of your fruit
  • 3 tbsp cornstarch (again, you can lessen or increase this depending on how much rhubarb you end up with.)
  • 1 egg, beaten lightly
  • 1 -2 tbsp sugar

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°
  2. Place the rhubarb in a bowl.
  3. Place sugar and cornstarch into another bowl and whisk together. Pour over the rhubarb and mix well.
  4. Let this sit for five minutes.
  5. Prepare your bottom crust if you have not already rolled it out.
  6. Place the rhubarb into the bottom crust.
  7. Roll your top crust (you can do strips of a lattice if you desire, but it doesn’t work as easily for the egg wash), over the fruit, and secure edges with crimping of your choice. Cut a vent hole in the top.
  8. Put the pie in the fridge for 15-20 minutes.
  9. Remove from fridge, and wash the top with beaten egg.
  10. Sprinkle with the additional sugar.
  11. Place in oven and bake for 20 minutes.
  12. Reduce temperature to 350 and bake another 20-30 minutes or until the juices are bubbling up and appear to have thickened.
  13. Remove and cool thoroughly.

SERVES: 8

NOTES: don’t skip the egg wash and sugar on the top, it really makes it wonderful. Also you might use like an 8th of a tsp of cloves to the sugar/cornstarch. Mix in very thoroughly before adding to the fruit. I’m told it gives a “special” oomph to the taste.

SOURCE: Serious Eats

OVEN: 425°

TIME: 40-50 minutes

OOOH Peanut Butter Moosy Pie

peanutbutterOh this is so good. I mean good, good.

A perfect summer refrigerated pie.

You can doll it all up with the chocolate fencing and drizzle with some actual peanuts, or just leave it plain. It tastes wonderful either way.

It’s not that hard either.

So, think about it for this 4th, or for your next barbecue party.

Or next Sunday.

Or just because you want some.

Enjoy it.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 recipe graham cracker crust
  • 2 tbsp sugar
  • 1  1/3 c chocolate chips (bittersweet or semi-sweet)–about 8 oz
  • 2/3 c and 1 3/4 c heavy cream
  • 2 tbsp light corn syrup
  • 2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 c (6 oz) peanut butter chips
  • 2 tbsp creamy peanut butter

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Make the graham cracker crust. Bake at 350° for about 15 minutes, or until browned
  2. Combine the chocolate chips, 2/3 c cream, the corn syrup and half the vanilla in a bowl.
  3. Microwave until soft enough to whisk into a smoothness.
  4. Pour into the crust and spread.
  5. Place in freezer for 10 minutes until nice and hard.
  6. Microwave the peanut butter chips and 3/4 c heavy cream until melted.
  7. Whisk in the peanut butter and the vanilla.
  8. Cool to room temperature.
  9. Beat the remaining one cup of cream and 2 tbsp sugar until soft peaks.
  10. Add the peanut butter mixture in three parts, folding into the whipped cream.
  11. Pour and spread on top of the chocolate layer.
  12. Chill at least an hour.
  13. Decorate with melted chocolate drizzled around and scatter some peanuts if desired.
  14. Store in refrigerator.

SERVES: 8

SOURCE: We Call Him Yes! Chef!

Kitrusy Key Lime Pie

Key-Lime-PieOh this pie is so good.

It was nice and bright and citrusy, and at the same time, smooth as silk.

It is a perfect pie in the summer.

Or in the winter.

Or, well, you get my point.

And that Key lime thing? Forget buying those tiny little thing and squeezing a kazillion of them to get enough juice. Taste-testing has proved that nobody can tell the different. So use regular limes and the work is virtually nil.

This recipe came from Cook’s Illustrated, one of my bibles, and it was simply perfect.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 recipe of graham cracker crust.
  • 4 lg egg yolks
  • 4 tsp grated lime zest
  • 1/2 c lime juice (about 5 limes)
  • 1 can sweetened condensed milk (14 oz)

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Make the graham cracker crust in a pie plate, as directed. Crust should remain “warm” while awaiting the filling.
  2. Whisk the egg yolks and the zest for about two minutes, until the yolks take on a tinge of green.
  3. Add the can of milk and whisk that in.
  4. Add the lime juice, and whisk again.
  5. Set the mixture aside for about 30 minutes. (It will thicken)
  6. Preheat oven to 325°.
  7. Pour filling into the crust.
  8. Bake for between 15-20 minutes. The filling should be jiggly but firm.
  9. Cool on wire rack for about an hour and then refrigerate for until thoroughly cold.
  10. Add whipped cream to top if desired.

SERVES: 8

NOTES: I didn’t bother with the topping. You can decorate with curls of lime zest or a slice on the top for company.

Sweet Apple Pie

apple+pie+Sur+la+TableI’ve made a number of apple pies in my day. Some have turned out well, others, well, best left unsaid. Mostly I have trouble with the juices thickening up. The pie tastes fine, but it’s shall we say a bit runny. If you like your apple pie with ice cream, that works pretty well, since the juices bathe the ice cream and it’s all a wonderful marriage.

But sometimes, you like a nice firm pie, but still one where the apples are nicely done, yet not mushy.

It’s hard to get all that together.

This recipe worked pretty well, and was unique. I like unique.

So give it a go and see what you think. Whether it meets your needs or not, it will still taste fabulously. This is one from Moshasmama at All Recipes.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 recipe for a double crust pie pastry. ( You can use your own, or buy it ready-made if you must!)
  • 1/2 c unsalted butter
  • 3 tbsp flour
  • 1/4 c water
  • 1/2 c white sugar
  • 1/2 c packed brown sugar
  • 8 medium-sized apples (granny smith work best for pies I find, but a good hard apple will suffice and here in the Southwest, we seem to have a half-dozen or so which are very firm and sweet.) Peel, core and slice.

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Melt the butter in a saucepan, add flour, and stir into a roux, cooking for a couple of minutes while stirring.
  3. Add the water and sugars, bring to boil and reduce to a simmer.
  4. Meanwhile, get your apples ready.
  5. Place the bottom crust in the pan.
  6. Fill with apples, there should be enough to mound nicely.
  7. Roll out the top crust and cut into strips to make the lattice.
  8. Pour the syrup over the apples evenly.
  9. Cover with the lattice strips.
  10. Place in the oven and cook for 15 minutes.
  11. Reduce temperature to 350° and bake an additional 35-45 minutes or until apples are pierced easily with a sharp knife blade.

Elegant Sour Cream Apple Pie

sourcreamapplepie400aOh goodness I do love apple pie. This is a variation off the usual one and frankly it’s utterly delicious.

It’s from allrecipes.com., with just a tad of alteration.

So think of this marvelous pie whenever you want to do something just a bit more elegant than the normal apple pie, good as that is.

INGREDIENTS:

  • 1 unbaked pie crust for a 9 inch pie (half recipe)
  • 3/4 c sugar
  • 2 tbsp flour
  • 1/8 tsp salt
  • 1 c sour cream
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 lg egg
  • about 4-5 peeled, cored, and sliced granny smith apples or other similar “hard” apple. Golden delicious works fine as well as some of the newer hybrids which are tart and crunchy. Do not use soft apples. They just disintegrate during the cooking.

For the Topping:

  • 1/3 c sugar
  • 1/3 c flour
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • about 1 c of oat meal (quick or regular)
  • 1/4 c chilled diced butter

INSTRUCTIONS:

  1. Make the pie crust following the recipe or *gasp* buy one of those premade ones. But please don’t.
  2. Place the crust in the pie plate and refrigerate until ready to fill.
  3. In a medium bowl, mix the sugar, flour and salt together with a whisk.
  4. Whisk together the sour cream and the egg, and then add that to the flour/sugar mixture.
  5. Add the apples and stir to coat.
  6. Place all into the pie crust.
  7. Bake for 15 minutes in a preheated 425° oven. Reduce to 350° and bake for another 30 minutes.
  8. Prepare the topping by add all the ingredients save the butter and mix. Then drop in the butter chunks and cut it into the mixture until it is crumbly. Place in the fridge until ready to add to the pie.
  9. After the 30 minutes backing time is over, remove the pie and place the topping on top.
  10. Return to oven for 10-15 minutes until lightly browned.
  11. Cool the pie on  a rack and then place in the fridge to chill thoroughly.

Serves: 8

NOTES: you can vary the topping to include anything that would work here. Brown sugar might be substituted in part, also adding walnuts or pecans would be good.