Pat In Pie Crust – A Bonus Recipe

It’s THAT time of year again.  Grocery shopping with a list a mile long, cleaning the house from top to bottom and scouring through recipes trying to pick out the perfect dish.  I love Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving 80s

Our family enjoying Thanksgiving dinner together. — Please excuse us, everyone looked liked that in the 80s!

Growing up, it was always my favorite holiday.  We rarely got together with extended family, so it was always a quieter day at home as a family of six.  Our mom would get up early and work hard to get the turkey roasting.  We rotated each year, taking turns assisting her to ensure that we learned how to make a turkey dinner.  We loved “helping” her as she made the stuffing from scratch.  The best part was pulling out and eating croutons that had soaked up warm butter before she added anything else to the bowl!

Pies were always on the agenda, though I believe that my mom made them the day before.  I always remember her making apple and pumpkin pies, but I think when I was young, I was more interested in the Cool Whip that went on top!  As we got older, we made other kinds, our favorites of course.  She had no problem having us take over the pie baking responsibilities!

My mom has the most simple pie crust recipe, one that requires no rolling out!  She’s used it for years and taught us to make it.  I still use it.  It’s a great recipe because there is no shortening in it and it’s really fast to make….and did I mention that you don’t have to roll it out?!

Pat In Pie Crust

  • 1 1/2 cups flour
  • 2 tsp sugar
  • 1 tsp salt
  • 1/2 cup cooking oil
  • 2 tblsp. milk

Measure all ingredients into pie plate.  Combine with fork.  Press into pie plate with fingers.  Prick with fork many times.  Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes or until lightly browned.

Pie Crust IngredientsI started out by measuring all of the ingredients into my pie plate.  It’s so nice to not use other dishes or especially, THE ROLLING PIN!!  The mess stays contained!

Pie Crust doughNext, with a fork, I combined all of the ingredients until they came together as a dough.

Pie Crust PattingUsing my fingers, I pressed the dough down flat and up the edges to form the crust.  Once it was shaped the way I liked it, I crimped the sides along the top, though you wouldn’t have to do that.

Pie Crust ForkI pricked the bottom of the crust in several places with my fork.  This is done so that the crust won’t bubble up and look uneven when it’s baked.

Pie Crust Done2

I popped it into my preheated oven and baked it for 10 minutes.  The edges turned golden brown.  It only took about 20 minutes total and I had a beautiful pie crust that looked like I’d spent hours on!

I went on to make a Chocolate Pudding Pie Filling from scratch to fill this pie shell.  (I’ll explain how I did that in our next post.)  If chocolate doesn’t suit your fancy though (which really, how couldn’t it?!) you can fill this crust with any filling.  If you want to make a fruit pie, don’t pre-bake the crust before you add the fruit filling.  Add a crumble topping crust to the top for a great match with this Pat In crust bottom.

So before you start panicking about the homemade pie you are supposed to be bringing to your Thanksgiving meal, but don’t know when you’ll ever get the time to make, take a deep breath and start patting out this quick easy crust.  It will look great and taste even better.  Plus, the best part is that they’ll think you spent HOURS making it!

Happy Baking!

Wendy

Butterscotch Pie

Since my husband found out he’s not allowed to eat chocolate, desserts have become a real challenge, or shall I say disappointment, at my house.  In my opinion, all desserts should involve chocolate in some way, to make them worthy of eating.  It’s not that desserts without it are bad, but chocolate always makes everything better!  When I find a recipe that calls for it, I have a battle in my mind.  “Should I make this delicious chocolate dessert that he can’t eat and has to watch the rest of us eat or should I be nice and make something else?”  Most of the time I make something else.  Just his luck, I was having one of my, “be nice and make something else” moments when I ran across Grandma Dora’s recipe for Butterscotch Pie.  While it wasn’t chocolate, it certainly sounded delicious!  I pulled it out of the recipe box and went to work.

Butterscotch Pie Recipe Butterscotch Pie (With a few tweaks.)

  • 1 cup brown sugar
  • 2 heaping Tablespoons flour (I added another Tablespoon to make it thicker.)
  • 1 Tablespoon butter
  • 1 egg (I put in the whole egg so I didn’t waste any of it.)
  • 1 cup milk
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla

Add all ingredients into a small saucepan.  Turn on to medium heat and whisk constantly.  Bring to a boil.  Whisk one minute while boiling, until sauce is thick and creamy.  Pour into baked pie shell.  Cool in refrigerator overnight or until set.  Cover with Cool Whip and serve cold.

Butterscotch Pie IngredientsThis is a pudding type pie, so you only need a bottom crust…..total bonus!  I love it when I have a pie that doesn’t require a double crust!  I happened to have one of Pearl Curtis’ Pie Crusts all baked and ready to go so I quickly pulled out the ingredients for the filling, which are ones that everyone has on hand, and got started.

Butterscotch pie pouring milkIt really couldn’t have gotten much simpler.  I measured everything into the saucepan, put it on the stove top on medium heat and whisked constantly.

Butterscotch pie mixed in panAs the filling began to warm up, the butter melted and it looked like a beautiful, though thin, butterscotch sauce.  I continued to whisk and brought it to a boil.  Once boiling, I timed it for one minute.  The filling got thick and glossy.

Butterscotch Pie in Shell

After the filling had cooled for a minute, I poured it into the baked pie shell and popped it into the refrigerator to cool.  I left it overnight, though it’s not necessary.  It just needs enough hours to set.

Butterscotch Pie with Cool WhipIf you can’t have a dessert with chocolate, then you should at least have, my favorite, Cool Whip!  I thought it helped to fill in the rest of the crust nicely too.

Butterscotch Pie SliceWe had family stopping by the next day for a visit, so I made sure to get this out when they arrived.  I thought it would be a nice treat while they visited and besides, how many pies, cookies and cakes can one family eat?!  We managed to polish off the whole pie that afternoon.  My brother-in-law compared the flavor to Mrs. Sanderson’s butterscotch ice cream topping, but thicker…..and homeade!!  I thought it was a pretty nice compliment, especially for how easy it was to make.

I did receive a couple of complaints about the pie.  There were a few people who were upset that they weren’t there to try it.  There were also the complaints from the ones who only go to eat one piece!  Sounds like I will be making Butterscotch Pie again soon!

Happy Baking!

Wendy

 

 

Pearl Curtis’ Pie Crust

Pies are beautiful.  They are a work of art.  Each one is different, unique, a creation.  My mom tells stories of learning how to bake with Grandma Dora, her mother-in-law.  She remembers a time when they decided to bake a pie together.  She volunteered for the easy part, cutting up the fruit for the inside.  She decided to let Grandma take charge of what she did best, the crust.  Grandma Dora tossed in a few ingredients, her hands flew and moments later, a beautiful crust just appeared.  My mom said it was incredible to watch.  Grandma was a true master of the art of pie making.

After hearing this story, I decided I had to try the pie crust recipe that I found when I was looking through Grandma’s recipe box. It came from her friend, Pearl Curtis.  I knew it had to be good because I found two copies of it.  One that she had written on a scrap piece of paper and the other that she had written out on a recipe card to save, though she had saved both. Pearl Curtis' Pie Crust1

Pearl Curtis’ Pie Crust

  • Sift together – 2 cups flour – salt
  • Take out :
  • 1/3 cup flour and salt mixture and mix with 1/4 cup water.
  • Cut into remaining flour, 2/3 cup shortening.
  • Combine 2 mixtures.
Pie Cutter

The old and the new. Grandma Dora’s pastry cutter and my Kitchenaid.

As I was getting out the ingredients and supplies to start putting the dough together, I got out my pastry cutter, which just happens to be Grandma Dora’s.  Then I remembered a tip from my sister Amy.  Always use the Kitchenaid to mix up your pie dough.  It’s so much easier!  I felt kind of guilty, making a pie crust in the Kitchenaid, with my Grandma’s pastry cutter sitting there on the counter, but if she were still alive, I’m sure she’d be making it that way too!

 

 

 

 

I started out by measuring the flour and salt into the Kitchenaid bowl.  I mixed it together and then pulled out 1/3 cup and put it into a small bowl.  I added 1/4 cup of water to the bowl and set it aside. Four and water

Then I measured out 2/3 cups of shortening and cut it into the flour mixture that was left in the Kitchenaid bowl. Pie Crust Bowl

After that was complete, I combined the mixtures into the Kitchenaid and turned it on.  I found that the 1/4 cup of water wasn’t enough.  The dough was still quite dry.  So, I slowly added more, a little at a time, until it was a good consistency.  I ended up adding quite a bit more water, probably 4-5 Tablespoons, till I was able to form it into a ball with my hands and it held together. Pie Crust Dough

Once it was in a ball, I divided it in half.  While the recipe doesn’t say it, it’s enough dough for two crusts.  One top and a bottom or two bottoms.  The pie that I was making didn’t require a top crust, so I wrapped one of the two balls of dough in saran wrap and put it in the fridge for a different pie on a different day.  Then I started the process of rolling out the dough that I had left out.

Rolled out Dough
I’m a bit of a perfectionist, so pie crusts are difficult for me. (Deep breath!)  I want them to look like a magazine cover or what you see in a bakery, uniform and perfect.  But I needed to remind myself that each homemade pie should look unique.  That’s the beauty of it and the difference in each one is what makes it special.

Dough in plate2

Once I was finished, I pricked the crust with a fork so it wouldn’t bubble up and popped it into the oven at 425 degrees for about 10 minutes, until I started to see some browning around the edges.  Because the pie recipe I was making had a filling that needed to be added to a baked crust, I had to bake it first.  Other recipes, for fruit pies with a top and bottom crust, wouldn’t be baked until they were all put together.

The recipe as I made it, was as follows:

Pearl Curtis’ Pie Crust

  • 2 cups flour
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/4 water – plus more as needed
  • 2/3 cup shortening

Combine flour and salt. Remove 1/3 cup of the flour/salt mixture and combine with water in a small bowl.  Set aside.  Cut shortening into the remaining flour/salt mixture in Kitchenaid. Combine two mixtures.  Add more cold water if necessary, till dough forms a ball in your hands, that stays together.  Divide dough in half. Roll dough out thin, big enough to lay over the top edge of pie dish with enough extra to pinch top edges.  Prick with fork.  Bake at 425 degrees for 10 minutes or until edges are just beginning to brown.  Cool and fill with pie filling of your choice.

Yields: 2 pie crusts

Ella's Lemon Pie

I finished the pie off with a lemon filling, one out of my Grandma’s recipe box called “Ella’s Lemon Pie.”  The crust was light, but strong enough that it didn’t crumble when you cut it and served it onto a plate.  In the words of my husband, the crust was, “delightful!”

Happy Baking!

Wendy