Thursday, January 26, 2012

Lattice Pie Crust How-To

I made a lattice top blueberry pie for National Pie Day. I know that sometimes weaving dough strips into a lattice pie crust seems intimidating so I thought I'd share my easy method.

(Please pardon the focus problems with some of these photos. Between learning how to use the features of my new camera and my deteriorating eyesight my photos are not coming out the way I intend!)


It's a good thing to keep in mind that a lattice top pie, because of its open spaces, is more likely to have the filling bubble or leak out. Apple pie is an excellent filling for lattice top because it tends to be less juicy and runny. Sometimes. Though I knew this perfectly well, I still chose very juicy blueberries for my filling (because my freezer is full of them!)


For a blueberry pie I always squeeze the juice of one lemon over the berries to add some acidity for a bright flavor. Lots of good butter adds richness to the juices.




For the lattice strips I roll the top crust out as I would for a closed crust pie.



I cut the dough into strips. For this pie I varied the width of the strips, inspired by a pie design made by my daughter, Katie. Start the weaving of the lattice by taking two strips from the middle of the dough circle, they will be the longest length. The outer, shorter strips will be used for weaving the outer edges of the pie.



Lay them on the pie, crossing in the middle.



Fold back one side of the strip that is underneath the other. Take another strip of dough and lay that alongside the unfolded strip and perpendicular to the folded strip.



Lay the folded end back down in place. Lay another strip over it, alongside the other two.

Now the method here is to fold back one side of all the strips that are under other strips, lay a strip perpendicular to the folded strip and then lay the folded one back down over the new strip. The pie can be rotated to do each side, working from the center out, folding back "under" strips to lay new strips perpendicular to the folded ones. Does that make sense?



So here are all the "under" strips folded up. I'll lay another strip there, fold the strips back down flat and fold the next set of "under" strips up and repeat.


Please tell me if you feel like your head is about to explode.


When all the strips have been laid and woven the pie should look something like this. If it doesn't....so what. It's only pie and it will still taste great!

At this point I don't trim any of the ends off, I roll and shape them into a raised edge around the pie and then flute it. All that edging dough is needed to build up a dam that will keep those runny juices in the pie as much as possible. If there is an area that is a little short, pull off a bit of the longer, extra bits and transfer to the short part.

Just like any other pie, I brush the dough with an egg wash (a beaten egg with a tablespoon of water) and sprinkle with some sugar for a bit of sweet crunch.



My finished pie is a bit over-baked because I took a walk while it was in the oven and failed to return before it was finished. See- these things happen to experienced pie makers too.

Try a lattice top pie sometime. It's easier than it looks!

4 comments:

  1. No, it's not focus problems, it's called bokeh. :-P That's what happens when you use a 50! Lovely. Of course, you have to make sure the bokeh is in the right place...

    That pie looks yummy! I made peach, but now it's gone and I want blueberry...

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  2. Yeah, like not having the bokeh in the foreground. I have lots and lots of issues and questions when you get here.

    I'll take peach.

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  3. You explained it perfectly. And I would eat that pie in a skinny minute, overcooked or not.

    New camera with a 50mm? That's my favorite lens.

    Have you thawed out a bit from the ice?

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  4. Well, maybe I should just not bring my camera at all... I'll shoot with yours!

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