My grandmother was the pie master. She could throw together enough of them to feed a small army and make it seem perfectly effortless. She also used no measuring implements that I can remember. Me making pie is nothing like this. I use every measuring cup and spoon available to me, panic over the texture of the dough, and check the oven so many times I may as well camp out in front of it.
All that said, pie is my favorite thing to make. You get to be creative with the construction, and quite literally everyone loves a pie (if you don’t, let’s not be friends). As mentioned in a previous post, when I moved over to a plant-based diet, pie was my toughest challenge to overcome because, let’s face it, pastry really does want butter. Of course it was Isa Chandra and Terry Hope Romero–the venerable duo who wrote the Veganomicon–who ultimately taught me how to make a great vegan pie. Their unassuming little cookbook, Vegan Pie in the Sky, holds all the answers; so if you are vegan and like pie, I highly suggest picking up a copy.
My family always hosts a huge 4th of July party, for which I’m tasked to make pies. This year I went with very simple cherry pie from the above cookbook, but because I am some kind of masochist, decided to make these star piled crusts. Luckily I had many wonderful sous chefs (hopefully still my friends) to help me cut out and freeze a billion stars. Totally worth it in the end, for both the visual effect and the texture of the top crust. Someday I hope to throw together a party’s worth of pies with ease like my grandmother, but until then I’ll be the one stalking my oven.