Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Serious Amounts of Pi

These were super easy to make and way cute.  It calls for a batch of double-crust pie dough, which I made from the recipe later in this post, but you might be able to do it with a single-crust batch.  I made the double-crust and had enough for these 24 mini's and for a crust for the banana cream pie I made.  Admittedly I had to re-roll the scraps of dough (I know, pie baking no-no, but it worked).  Also, if you are making these and the banana cream pie, save the 2 unused egg yolks and use them to make the banana cream.

Pecan Pie Bites

1 recipe pie dough for Double-crust pie
1/3 C chopped pecans, plus enough chopped pecans to lightly cover the bottom of each of the mini muffin tins
1 C packed brown sugar
2/3 C corn syrup
2 tsp vanilla
3/4 tsp salt
2 eggs
2 egg whites

To make mini pies, roll out the pastry dough and use a round cookie cutter or biscuit cutter to cut out circles.  Press each circle into a sprayed mini muffin cup.  This will make 24 mini muffin sized pies - that's usually one pans worth.  I pricked the bottom of each, just for good measure then spooned a small amount of chopped pecans into each pie shell - just enough to cover the bottom.

In a large bowl, stir the remaining 1/3 C pecans with all the remaining ingredients.  Pour filling into prepared muffin tins.  Bake for 20 min at 375.  Cool in pan 10 minutes.  Remove from pan and cool on a cooling rack.  Top with whipped cream!

Recipe from Lion House Bakery Cookbook by Brenda Hopkin!

Banana Cream Pie

I'm so proud of myself for making this pie.  Why, you might ask.  Well, the last time I attempted to make a custard from scratch was when I was in elementary school (it must have been about 4th grade).  My neighbor and I decided we wanted to try a recipe we'd found for a chocolate custard.  I don't know if we didn't read the directions well or if the directions weren't specific enough regarding how to add the eggs.  Somehow we ended up with scrambled egg chunks inside our chocolate custard.  It was disgusting.  It was scarring.  I never attempted to make a custard again.  Until yesterday.  And it was good!  It was easy!  Hopefully my directions are thorough enough that you don't end up with scrambled egg and banana pie.

Prepared and cooled pie crust
1/4 C cornstarch
2/3 C sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 C milk
3 egg yolks, beaten (key word, don't skip that step - I wonder if that's what my friend and I did wrong all those years ago)
2 Tbsp butter
1/2 tsp vanilla
2-3 bananas

Mix together cornstarch, sugar, salt, and milk in a medium sauce pan.  Cook over medium heat until thick, stirring constantly.  (Mine cooked about 13 minutes to get it thick enough.)  Pour a small amount of hot mixture into the bowl containing the egg yolks, whisking the eggs constantly as you pour.  Add the egg mixture to the pan with the remaining hot mixture and cook another 6 minutes.  Remove from heat and allow to cool a moment (this would be a great time to go slice your bananas into the crust).  Now add the butter and vanilla to the custard.  Pour over bananas.  I let mine cool on a wire rack for a few hours, then I put it in the fridge until I was ready to serve it.  Top with whipped cream.

Variation:  For a coconut cream pie, mix 1 1/2 C coconut into the custard mixture at the same time you add the vanilla and butter.  Leave out the bananas.

Recipe from Logan B. whose love of pie started it all.

Double Crust Pie Dough

This crust was one of the easiest recipes I've made for pie and one of the flakiest.  It will become my new standard.  As with all pie crust recipes, do not over mix or overwork.  Also, if baking an empty pie shell, always prick the bottom and sides of the crust before baking.

2 1/2 C all purpose flour
1/4 C granulated sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 C shortening
1 egg, beaten
1 Tbsp vinegar
1/4 C ice water, or less.  Just use as much as it takes to get the dough to start to hold together.

Stir together flour, sugar, and salt.  Cut the shortening in until crumbly.  Stir in egg and vinegar. Sprinkle in water.

Divide dough into two.  If baking a single crust empty pie (for example, for the banana cream pie above) bake at 375 for 15-20 minutes.

Recipe from Lion House Bakery Cookbook by Brenda Hopkin!

We also had Geoff's favorite: key lime pie.  (For those of you worried about us eating all this pie alone, we had a full house last night.  Around 25 people and maybe 10 kids here to eat pie.)

Recipe for Key Lime Pie here!
Hope your pi day was excellent!


  1. What a beautiful thing to celebrate! Mmm pie..

  2. That was me! I was finally able to post to your blog with my sparty pants phone!