Holiday Entertaining Guide - Page 10 - The upper crust

Holiday Entertaining Guide
- Page 10
The upper crust
You don’t have to suffer pie anxiety.

That’s the word from Chef Larkin Rogers of Hudson, Ohio, who teaches a cooking class simply titled “Homemade Crust.”

“We know everybody starts to get a little nervous about the pie thing” in the weeks leading toThanksgiving, she said in a soothing tone.

“We’re really just going to concentrate on the crust,” she said, “because I think that’s where people fall apart.” Or they are afraid they will, she added.

Rogers, a Culinary Institute of America trained chef, owned an award-winning restaurant in England before returning to the United States years ago.

During the class, she assured us that making pie crust is “really quick,” and you don’t have to go all high anxiety to make a flaky crust.

“The most important thing, bar none, is your ingredients have to be cold,” she said. She repeated this again and again, in some form or another, throughout the evening—her pie crust mantra, of sorts.

She told us that her go-to crust for pumpkin and other custard pies is a paté brisee with egg, a rich, slightly sweet dough that uses milk instead of water. Paté brisee is French for “breaking dough.”

The recipe is below, along with one she shared for sweet hand pie dough.

Rogers uses a food processor with the metal blade when making pie crusts.

First she combines the dry ingredients, and then adds the butter, egg and milk or other liquid, in that order. It is indeed a very quick process.

If you opt to mix the dough with your hands,