easy as pie

If there ever was a misnomer, it's the phrase "easy as pie."

Pie, is not the easy. Yes, easy to eat, but not easy to make. I'm guessing the phrase was invented in the 1800's when making pie was easy--compared to doing laundry, crossing the country on the Oregon Trail, or sewing all of your own clothes. 

Cake is easy. You can get a mix and it tastes *almost* like 98% as good as homemade.

Premade pie, not so much. 

And I'm a pie snob. While I love pie, I only love homemade pie, preferably my mother's. None of that Sara Lee premade crust or Shari's pie or Costco pie... it's not as good. It's just not. 

And this just in: homemade, gourmet pies are now the new cupcakes. A few years ago fancy cupcake shops popped up all over and it was hip to pay $5 for a cupcake, or have your wedding cake replaced by cupcakes.

Now, it's pie, and just like cupcake shops, pie shops, including one near my work, are open for business. I can not be more excited. Simply because in my mind, (homemade) pie > cookies > cake. (I went to a wedding recently where they had pie instead of cake... now why didn't I think of that?)

But before you run out to that new gourmet pie shop on the corner, or (gasp) get one from the grocery store, I'm going to share my pie crust recipe which (with practice) is easy as, well, pie. 

You need:
2 cups flour5 to 8 tbs. ice water
2/3 C. shortening
1 tsp salt
In large mixing bowl, whisk flour and salt together. Add shortening and mix with pastry blender till it looks like course crumbs. Add ice water a few tablespoons at a time mixing with a fork till dough starts to clean the sides of the bowl and pull into a ball. Split dough in half, place in 2 sandwich bags and refrigerate for at least an hour. (You can refrigerate this longer, but it can get tough if you leave it in there overnight.)
Sprinkle your work surface and rolling pin with flour (and have flour on hand.) Roll out 1 bag of dough to about 1/4 of an inch thick slowly and gently. Do not overwork the dough-- it will make it unhappy.
What your dough should look like after rolling it out:

Lay it gently over your pie tin, using baking scissors to snip the excess.

Then, using your thumb and forefinger, pinch the crust all the way around. This technique takes some practice. I suggest making crab pinchers with both hands, and and move slowly around, alternating between pinching the inside and outside of the pie dough. 

Fill your pie with anything delicious! (Like pumpkin or apples.)


  1. i think a chocolate pie needs to be on this weekend's agenda!! just a fewwww more days to go ;)

  2. I totally agree, non-homemade pie is not even worth eating (at least in my opinion)!

  3. Handmade only, all the way! I totally agree :) I've only recently developed a craving for good pies -- my mom was more of a cake person!


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