One reader, Andy, suggested that I try a recipe from “Art of the Pie.” Kate McDermott runs a class here in Seattle, offering her expert pie-baking tips. I’ve read about her in magazines, both national and local, and her charming and loving approach to pie makes me feel more like an artist or creator than a baker tied to measurements. Her instructions are conversational and very warm, and she enlists you to trust your instincts as you create your pie.
I’ve distilled them here for the purposes of simplicity (and to avoid the English teacher’s nightmare: plagiarism), but I highly recommend you have a look at her mantra “flour, salt, fat, and water,” as I think you’ll walk away feeling confident and prepared to bake a wonderful pie. (And maybe even a little charmed by her prose.)
This dough is undoubtedly simpler than the last recipe I chose– fewer ingredients and a little less active time. I also found it more pliable than the last dough (but that doesn’t necessarily mean better tasting; let’s wait and see!). Because I have so much pie lying around the kitchen, I chose to halve the following recipe and make a mini-pie in a cast iron skillet. Adorable and better for my waistline. (I may or may not have had a sliver of pie for breakfast.)
Here we go!
First, Kate offers tips about how to create the perfect lattice top, which I found helpful. This is so much simpler than how I was doing it!
And now for the crust!
Kate McDermott’s Pie Crust
2 1/2 C all-purpose, unbleached flour
1/2 tsp salt
16 Tbl high-fat European butter, such as Kerrygold
3-6 tbl ice-cold water
for the filling [for a whole pie]:
2 C raspberries
3 apples, cored, peeled, and chopped
1/2 C sugar
2 Tbl tapioca flour
1 tsp lemon zest
1 Tbl lemon juice
Using cold hands, rub butter into flour. She recommends cutting the butter up into small chunks, but I loved Gavin’s suggestion of freezing the butter, grating it, and mixing it in with a spatula, so I chose to do that. Slowly add water. Swish around and don’t touch too much; warm hands warm up cold butter. Try to get it so it forms a nice all of dough; add more water until you get that.
Divide into two discs, and let chill in the fridge for about an hour.
Roll out using a little extra flour, until it’s about an inch bigger around than the pan you’re using.
Once it’s assembled, brush the top with an egg white wash and sprinkle with a little sugar.
This is what I listened to. It sounds like Americana, just like a slice of apple and berry pie.
And the verdict…? Later this week after I try Christian’s mom’s recipe.