Must-Haves for Gorgeous Holiday Pies

pies

If you’re really lucky, there’s a veteran pie baker in your family. In mine, it’s my grandma. With her eyes closed, and with one arm tied behind her back, she can turn out several homemade pies before lunchtime. Okay, I was exaggerating about the eyes closed and arm thing. But the rest is true. And she’s not only quick, but her pies are fantastic. I mean, the crust is practically legendary – buttery, flaky, never the least bit soggy, just PERFECT. (And believe you me, I have her handwritten recipe safely tucked away in my recipe box.)

Anyway, even expert bakers like my grandma know that besides a stellar crust recipe, you need some simple, good tools to bake great pies. Here are some trusted ones that will help you make yours as awesome as my grandma’s (well, you might need a little practice for that level of deliciousness, but still…)

First and foremost, you need a good rolling pin. There are wooden, marble and even glass ones available, and each has its own benefits. But a good hardwood rolling pin will never let you down. This one is made in Maine of solid rock maple to last for generations.

rolling-pin

This cloth pastry frame secures to your countertop so you can roll out the perfect sized crust for an 8″ or 9″ pie. 

pastry-frame

Create a magazine-cover-worthy design on the top of your pie crust with this cool cutting tool. With cherries on one side and stars on the other, it adds that crowning touch to pies all year round.

pie-top-cutter

And now for the pie pan. Feast your eyes on this beautiful hand-thrown stoneware one. Now THIS would make a statement at the holiday table or gathering. It has a smooth glazed finish, too – for super easy cleanup. Grandma would approve!

pottery-pie-pan

When it comes to tradition, value and longevity, nothing beats good old cast iron. This pie pan is extra deep – 1 3/4″ deep – which makes it an excellent choice not only for luscious fruit pies, but also for DEEP DISH HOMEMADE PIZZA. Mmmm…just picture it.

cast-iron-pie-pan

Here’s a choice that’s good for newer pie bakers. Made of heavy recycled aluminum (neat! recycled!), it has a pebble pattern that 1) allows air to get underneath your crust for just the right browning, and 2) makes the crust stick less, so pie is easier to serve. Plus, it comes with a crust protector for the top, to prevent the top crust from getting a little TOO toasty.

pie-crust-protector-and-pan

Speaking of crust, this little gadget has been around since well before Grandma’s day. The weight of the chain prevents the crust from bubbling or lifting while baking. Oh, and it’s stainless steel do you can just toss it in the dishwasher. Simple and easy, what could be better? 

pie-chain

Still not convinced to try pie baking? Never fear. Through the wonders of 2016 technology, you can mail order a freshly homemade pie from Amish Country and have it shipped to your doorstep! And not just any pie either – a traditional “shoofly” pie, a longtime favorite among the Amish and Mennonites of Ohio and Pennsylvania. One customer said, “Oh my! Better than I remembered from many years ago when I lived in PA! Every bite is worth the price.” 

shoofly-pie

And now to go bug my grandma for a homemade pecan pie…I’m sure she can whip it right up before lunchtime! Happy pie baking, and eating, to all.