Matt and I are both huge fans of pie (fun fact: our wedding was on Pi Day – 3/14/15). His favorite is pumpkin, and I can’t get enough blueberry, and we both agree: pecan is also at the top of the list. But really you can’t go wrong with any flavor. My easy pie making secret is to buy the pre-made rolled up pie crusts from the grocery store. I always get better results from the Pillsbury brand crusts rather than generic, but you can stock up when they’re on sale and keep them in the freezer for emergency pie situations.
Like we had this weekend.
How does one run into an emergency pie situation? Well, start by accidentally buying granny smith apples instead of golden delicious.
Oops! Oh well!
So this Caramel Apple Cranberry Pie happened on Sunday. I knew I wanted to make a pie, and I knew what we had in the house, but I haven’t yet accumulated recipes for every occasion just yet, and sometimes you just want to try something new.
When I look for recipes, I usually start out by googling the ingredients I want to include and what I want to make, so for example “apple cranberry dessert” or “greek yogurt salmon” or “roasted garlic salad dressing”.
Then I’ll look through the first few results. I love to find recipes from blogs, since the photos are always beautiful, but it’s hard to find feedback and reviews from people who’ve actually followed the recipe. Sites like allrecipes.com (where this pie came from) and epicurious.com typically have more information, but they can also have too many options and my decision paralysis sets in.
Anything that involves getting too many pots and pans dirty is immediately out. Same goes if there are too many steps. You want me to cook down the apples and the cranberries in separate sauce pans? Steam and then sautee? Um, no way.
I’ll also look through the ingredient list and make sure I have everything and that it appears in reasonable proportions. I get suspicious of either too many or too few ingredients and excessive salt or sugar.
Then I’ll read the few most popular comments, which typically have helpful tips or adjustments.
If you can’t find what you’re looking for, try tweaking your search terms a bit. I promise if you can think of it, there’s a recipe for it. I mean, within reason, obviously.
I wish I had a photo of the pie fully baked but honestly, we just dug into it too quickly.
The consensus is: this pie recipe is awesome. I would have preferred a recipe where you can throw the fruit into the shell without cooking it at all first, but I have found the pie turns out better when you cook it down a little bit. I also would have been more careful about sealing the top and bottom crusts.
But one of the best parts about baking is experimenting and trying something new!
Have you baked anything recently? Do you find recipes online or stick to cookbooks?