Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Chocolate Chip Pie

A friend in my playgroup is expecting a baby boy any time now. Any time someone in my playgroup is nearing their due date, we throw a little shower for them. I, of course, am always responsible for the cake. This time I decided to try a new recipe. Basically, it was a recipe for a chocolate chip cookie pie. I did not love this recipe, but my husband did.

I happened to have pie dough in the refrigerator. I just had to roll it out. I like to try to keep some pie shells frozen so that I can make a single crust pie anytime I want quickly. I would NEVER, I repeat NEVER buy store bought pie crust. It tastes awful. I would rather not eat pie. Michael often tells me that I am a snob about pastries. Maybe I am, but if I am going to eat all those extra calories in a dessert, it better be delicious. Makes sense, right? If you have pie shells on hand, you can make a whole plethora of pies quickly. You could make anything from egg custard to coconut cream to pumpkin or dutch apple. Why buy something at the store when you can just grab something far more delicious right out of your freezer? Plus, when you make it yourself, you know exactly what's in it. With pie dough, it is generally only about 4 ingredients. I bet there are a lot more in the store bought kind. Just a little food for thought...

Did you ever see a recipe that called for pastry flour? There are so many different kinds of flour. Pastry flour is just one example. Ideally, pie dough should be made with pastry flour. It is a low-gluten flour. When you mix anything with flour in it, you develop the gluten or protein. The more you develop it, the tougher it becomes. Since you want pie dough to be tender and flaky, the less gluten the better. So using pastry flour and handling the dough very little yields a very tender crust. Pastry flour feels smooth and fine and can be squeezed into a lump with your hand. It is perfect for pie dough, some cookies, biscuits and muffins. You can purchase pastry flour and many other specialty flours online.

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