As an apartment dweller, I am a long-time lover of Ashley English’s blog, Small Measure. I love to vicariously live her country life with fantastic photography and candid writing.
I was happy to see her add A Year of Pies: A Seasonal Tour of Home Baked Pies to her collection of books. I was even more happy when Mom (Jo) offered me a copy to review.
No surprise here: The photography is fantastic! Not only is every pie beautifully styled and photographed, but the book contains step-by-step instructions for making the perfect pie crust. This was something I especially appreciated when I drafted my bakery class to test out some of the recipes.
When I teach pie making to my high school students my objective is for them to make a great crust. I figure that if they have a crust figured out the fillings will follow. This book was great for that strategy. The beginning of the book has recipes for several basic crusts. The remainder of the book is filled with fillings organized by season.
Although recipes for gingersnap, chocolate cookie, almond shortbread, and graham cracker crusts are given, my students stuck to a basic shortening-and-butter crust. For fillings I picked the Pear Crostata, Buttered Rum Shoofly Pie, Lemon-Lime Chess Pie, Carrot Pie, and Roasted Butternut Squash Cheddar and Sage Galette.
I was so impressed by the results, but unfortunately my students were not. Although I appreciated the variety of sweet and savory fillings, the kids just wanted the basics. I didn’t mind because the butternut squash pie was all mine! I love that the book has both savory and sweet pies. There are many creative combinations that I look forward to trying like Chai Apple.
I recommend this book for beginners and experienced bakers. The step-by-step instructions help build confidence for novices. The wide selection of creative pie fillings will keep the expert baker busy.
Thanks again, Mom, for sending this book to me and to Lark Crafts for sending a copy to her.
It’s hard to believe here in Iowa but Spring is right around the corner. We’re giving away a copy of the book so you can try out some of the Spring recipes. Apricot Almond? Chicken Pot Pie? Asparagus and Dill? YUM!
Sadly, I am keeping the book so there is no giveaway this week. If you are looking for the book, you can find it here on Amazon. What is your favorite kind of pie?