Thursday, November 25, 2010

Caramel Pear Pie

I altered a Pampered Chef recipe for Caramel Apple Tartlets to make this pie. I loved the flavor of the tartlets, but I'm more of a whole pie girl & I don't like apples much (I know, being a teacher that's rather sacrilege)... So I did my own thing.

The ingredients

2-3 pears
Chopped Nuts
Caramel Candy (We made caramel apples and used the left over caramel, but you can just use caramel candy from the store)
Caramel Butterscotch Sauce (for ice cream) 1/2 jar
Tsp. Flour

Crumb Topping:
1/2 cup Brown sugar
1 cup Flour
1 stick Butter
First I minced my pears. I don't like the texture of cooked apples/pears so I cut them small as to avoid that and keep the flavor. Then i mixed the pears in a bowl the the chopped nuts, & caramel butterscotch sauce. I added a teaspoon of flour to help bind it together. I also added some cinnamon and cardamom to taste.

I put the caramel candy in the bottom of the pie shell and topped it with the pear caramel sauce mixture.

I made a crumb topping by using a pastry blender to combine the butter, brown sugar, flour & spices. I sprinkled it over the pie and put it in the over at 350 for about 20 minutes until it started to get brown & crispy.

After removing the pie from the oven I added some some caramel sauce to the top! So sweet and rich and sticky, but everyone loved it! :)

Monday, November 22, 2010

Crystal's Quiche

This is Amy coming at you from the pie hole project with this week's recipe! This is the second savory pie I've made for our project and a family favorite; Quiche!

One of the things i like best about quiche is that it's totally customizable to your tastes...the recipe is really for the egg/cream mixture and the vegetables and cheeses that you use you can play around with until you find YOUR family fave!

This recipe is one that my sister Crystal brought back from her mission in France.


Egg Mixture:
4 medium to large eggs

1 tsp of chicken or beef bouillon or 1 cube
1 1/2 tsp of parsley (I used dried our of necessity)
500 ml of heavy cream (this translated into us using a 16 oz or pint sized bottle of cream)

2 1/2 to 3 cups of shredded cheese (we used 2 cups of sharp cheddar)
1 cup of ham, lunch meat style, cut up
1 cup mushrooms, sauteed, cut into bit sized pieces
1 cup small steamed broccoli florets
1/2 small onion, finely diced and sauteed
1 tbsp chopped garlic, sauteed with the onion

1 pie crust, pre-baked for 10-15 minutes until it's starting to look cooked but not brown.

My method with quiche is to have all of the filling ingredients EXCEPT the egg mixture cooked. Put these items into the pre-baked pie shell and pour the egg mixture over the top.

It's helpful in case you end up with too much of the filling (just take some out and save it for omelet filling).

Bake for an additional 30 minutes in a 350 degree oven until the middle is set. Watch the crust carefully and cover with tin foil if it looks like it is getting too brown. Serve hot, warm or cold!

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Quick & Easy "Cheesecake"

Hey everyone! I hope you are having a great Sunday. This is Amy, coming at you with this week's pie. 
This pie is a super quick and easy one that takes very little effort. Also a total bonus in that most of the ingredients are shelf stable (with the exception of lemon juice and cream cheese. Since both of those keep for ages in the fridge I always have ingredients for this pie on hand.
 Ingredients are:

  • 1 pre-made graham cracker pie crust (you can of course make your own if you so desire)
  • 1tsp vanilla
  • 1 16 oz block cream cheese
  • 1 14 oz can sweetened condensed milk
  • 1/3 cup lemon juice (fresh is best but use what you have)
  • 1 can of pie filling for topping (i like cherry) 
Mix together the sweetened condensed milk and room-temp cream cheese, use a hand mixer or stand mixer for this part. Once combined use a spatula to mix in lemon juice & vanilla until combined. 
Pour into your pie shell and you are done! Let the pie chill in the fridge a few hours before serving. If you want to add toppings (and why wouldn't you) let pie chill for 30 or so minuted and add 3/4 of a can of cherry pie filling on top (the whole can will overflow, don't ask how I know that). Or E's family (where I got this recipe) likes to top the pie with pineapple & maraschino cherries. However you top it this is a tasty, easy, quick desert. 

Thanks for checking in here at the pie blog! Catch ya later!

Monday, November 8, 2010

Apple Pie

I am a big apple pie fan. Especially if it is done right.
And this ladies and gentlemen is one awesome apple pie!

I started with homemade crust, this is the same crust I used for the Orange Meringue pie.
I really like how easy and yummy it is. 4 ingredients, very little work.

We peeled, cored, and sliced our apples. We used Gala. I have used this same recipe with Honey Crisp and it was divine, but they are expensive and intermittent in our store.

The filling is cooked and pour over the top of the apples, already resting on their crust.
I used this recipe, and it is wonderful!

After pouring the filling over the apples add your upper crust and seal the edges. Don't worry if your filling looks thick and caramel-y.
It will melt and ooze down through your apples in the baking process.
You then bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes, then reduce to 350 and bake for another 40 minutes give or take. Keep an eye on it, you don't want to burn your crust.
The finished product is best when served warm, but delicious no matter what.
Serving warm a la mode... pure heaven.
This will make my thanksgiving table. First time an apple pie has earned this fine distinction in my home.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Amy's Ultimate Tourtiere

So this recipe is an Amy special. I grabbed some inspiration and ideas from but decided to just do what worked for me in the end. The result? Tourtiere that reminded me of home. Yum!
Ultimate Tourtiere
  • 1 pound lean ground pork
  • 1 pound ground beef
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • Large baking potato (pre-baked)
  • 1/2 cup beef or chicken stock
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon dried thyme, crushed
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground sage
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1/8 teaspoon ground cloves
  • 1 egg (for egg wash)
  • 1 tbsp milk (for egg wash)
  • 1 recipe pastry for a 9 inch double crust pie
1.    Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C).
2.    In a saucepan, saute onion and garlic. Once onion is translucent add pork, beef, stock, salt, thyme, sage, black pepper and cloves. Cook over medium heat until mixture boils; stirring occasionally. Peel the baked potato and cut into chunks, add into pan. Simmer the potato with the meat mashing up with a fork as you stir. Reduce heat to low and simmer until meat is cooked, about 10 minutes.  Since the filling is fully cooked at this point now is the time to taste and adjust seasoning to taste.
3.    Spoon the meat mixture into the pie crust. Place top crust on top of pie and pinch edges to seal. Cut slits in top crust so steam can escape. Beat egg with 1 tbsp water and brush over crust.
4.    Bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes, cover edges of pie with strips of aluminum foil and return to oven. Bake for an additional 15 to 20 minutes until golden brown. Let cool 10 minutes before slicing.
A note about pie crust. For pies like this where the filling is already cooked you are really looking for that golden crust to go with your yummy filling. We discovered that the best method (for us) was to as we say reflect & protect. Watch your edges and when they get golden remove and protect with some foil strips. We tried it the other way around but with the egg wash covering the edges before the pie hit the oven ended the foil ended up sticking to the 
egg wash, bad.

I feel like the pie that we made with filling that we cooked and then cooled had better crust too. So if you can. Make the filling ahead and chill. 

Also, my normal MO would have been to brown the meat and then add the liquid etc after, but I have ot asy it worked well to have everything cook together. I realy like my onions cooked so I would still sautee them in the pan first before adding other ingredients.
There are lots of variations of this classic French Canadian recipe. Some use all pork or skip the potato altogether. We experimented this week and made one all pork and one mixed. We also tried adding extra spices such as cardamom but I personally found it a little overwhelming so I left it out of my ultimate recipe. The moral of the story is, experiment! If there is an herb you love, throw it in….taste and adjust as you see fit.

Pie Delay!

I will have our new pie up later today. Sorry for the is pretty much eating my face in a bad way.
On the upside I leave  you with the link to the pie crust recipe i've been using for the past few pies.
Posted on Pioneer Woman it's called Sylvia's Perfect Pie Crust and so far i'm in LOVE. It's makes three crusts at a time and i'll post my full review later today.