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Pies - Tarts

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This brown sugar and coconut wonder is a throwback to the days when Impossible pies heralded the arrival of Bisquick © which is a flour, baking powder, salt and shortening mix that made for quick biscuits, cakes and pancakes. Some of the most famous of this genre of pies were Impossible Coconut Pie and Impossible Bacon Pie which was the quickest quiche imaginable – the eggs and  bacon filling, mysteriously separating as the pie baked into a brunch cassrole/quiche that deserves its fame. Impossible referred to the quick and easy method (usually all ingredients were dumped in a blender and whizzed up in seconds), as well as the novelty of pies that went into a pan as a batter and bake into a pie filling/pie sort of dessert. This recipe is also good if you pour the Impossible filling into a pre-baked pie shell. Serve with crème anglaise, fresh churned vanilla ice-cream or a dab of whipped cream and some fresh summer berries. Vintage pie with contemporary great taste. It is not quite pie, not quite a chewy square but sort of a tender, buttery little cake that defies description. I guess it deserves to be called....Impossible.

Is this a cookie or a tart? A torte or a cake? It is a gorgeous cookie tart, with a European cachet but American ease of passage.......To me, Linzertorte has cookie roots and tort-ish aspirations.

It is the quintessential European treat: a nutty shortbread, kissed with a touch of cinnamon and cloves, topped with raspberry preserves followed by a lattice-work crust and a halo of confectioners’ sugar. This is divine and easy – lovely at Christmas but fashionably all seasonal. We dolled this sweetie up with a trio of nuts, and blended apricot as well as raspberry preserves to glitz up this tried-and-true. Match this up with a homemade apple strudel for a mini sweet table and have The Sound of Music cued in the DVD.

The best ingredients make all the difference.Recipes for pecan pie are equally divided between those which call for chopped pecans and those which call for whole pecans. Whole pecans make the pie look incredibly inviting but cutting neat wedges is a challenge. One solution is to freeze the baked pie, cut it into wedges with a serrated knife and allow it to warm to serving temperature.
Really good pecan pie is rare. Often, the nuts are small and indifferent, the filling is too sweet or too skimpy. How do you make a better pecan pie? Go back to the roots: pure cane syrup and fresh Georgia pecans. Someone once said that good baking is "a series of little things done right." This is so true of pecan pie.

This is one of those smooth-as-silk, spicy pumpkin pies that brings both raves and recipe requests.  Just make sure your spices as fresh as can be (no leftover spices from last Halloween). Traditionally made with evaporated milk, I prefer it with whipping cream for a slightly richer pie. www.TheSpiceHouse.com or King Arthur Flour are my recommendations for the best pumpkin pie spice blend or make your own Home Blend Pumpkin Pie Spice.
 

Use my recipe for a buttery pie crust or if you have one on hand, that's all you need for this fabulous, fresh pie.  Baker's Tip? A good way to check you have enough berries is to place the berries in the pie tin before lining it with pastry. If it is not brimming with berries, add more berries as per what you need.

This is also known as Writer's Block Blueberry Pie. If you make one of these, brew a pot of coffee and sit down to finish your novel, chances are, you'll finish something. Odds are it's the pie but there's a good chance you might stay the course and finish both (pie and novel). This combination of fresh and frozen berries makes the best (kid-approved) pie. You may use all fresh berries if you prefer. This pie is totally country - with a real butter pie dough and a very thin sprinkle of steusel on top, which looks grand, taste swell, and bumps this pie up to the next level. A graniteware pie tin is best (check out hardware stores or camping stores) but ceramic or tin is fine. (You can also leave out the streusel; it goes on top of the top pie pastry so the pie is sealed anyway)

Life is a cherry pie . A combination of bing cherries and sour cherries makes this bright scarlet pie a country fair contest winner. If pitting cherries is not your thing, just look out for pitted frozen ones. This is old time diner fabulous pie. 
 

Perky, sweet and tart. Strawberries would also work in this sensational pie that will have you whistling highlights from Oklahoma in no time. If your rhubarb is tough, remove the fibrous strands on the outer stalk before cutting. This pie is a very refreshing, spring-summer combination that is welcome in any season. 

This assembly of choux paste layers makes a giant Eclair. Looks like a cake but is put goes together like pastry and serves up like a cake or beautiful torte. If you're in a hurry, use pudding mix (instead of homemade custard) and whipped cream - you'll still have a decadent and delicious treat that is a crowd wow-er.

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