A Piece of the Pie

At the dawn of the first cool-ish snap, eggs, flour, butter and sugar beg to be blended into delightful, aromatic deliciousness, don’t you think? Nothing says autumn like warm, homemade pie. In kitchens across the Bay area, clouds of flour drift on air; pastry dough is kneaded and contortioned around oozing fillings of cherry, pumpkin and cinnamon-soaked apples. No pie menu, fall or otherwise, is complete without the requisite chilled sliver of crumbly graham cracker crust topped with a velvety citrus concoction and hefty dollop of gleaming sugary whipped cream. Here, sample some not-so-humble offerings made by local confectioners and packed with most any flavor imaginable – short of four and 20 blackbirds. 

Apple Cinnamon Lattice Pie

Burris Farm Market & Bakery

Bring the Americana classic to your own kitchen, or pop in the Loxley roadside stand for a ready-made version.

1 1/2 cups granulated sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
2 teaspoons cinnamon
3 tablespoons self-rising flour
3 cups fresh apples, peeled, cored and sliced
1 egg, beaten
3/4 stick butter, melted
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 (2-crust) package prepared, unbaked piecrust
1/4 stick butter, melted
cinnamon and sugar

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix together both types of sugar, cinnamon and flour.
3. Add apples, egg, butter and vanilla. Pour into 1 prepared, unbaked piecrust.
4. Cut strips from second piecrust and top pie in a lattice-like formation.
5. Brush top of pie with melted butter, and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar.
6. Bake in oven for 30 – 45 minutes, or until pie is brown and slightly bubbly. Serves 6.

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Autumn Pumpkin Pie

Burris Farm Market & Bakery

A festive, fall favorite, this aromatic dish is savory yet sweet. It’s a no-fail pick for Turkey Day. 

3/4 cup granulated sugar
1/4 tablespoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon cloves
1/4 teaspoon allspice
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups mashed pumpkin (fresh or canned)
1 egg
1 1/2 cups milk
1 unbaked piecrust
whipped cream, for garnish
cinnamon, for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2. Mix together sugar, spices and salt.
3. Add in the pumpkin, egg and milk. Combine well.
4. Pour into an unbaked piecust and bake in oven for 30 – 45 minutes. Pie is done when an inserted knife comes out clean.
5. Garnish with whipped topping, and sprinkle with cinnamon. Serves 6 – 8.

Sweet Potato Pecan Pie

Delish’s Desserts

Sonja Dowdle of this charming midtown eatery shares a fall treat, a definite contender for the Thanksgiving finale.

1 sheet refrigerated pie pastry
2 (16-ounce) cans sweet potatoes, drained
3 eggs
1 cup brown sugar, divided
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
2/3 cup light corn syrup
1 tablespoon butter, melted
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup pecan halves

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Press pastry dough into a 9-inch deep-dish pie plate.
2. In a small bowl, mash sweet potatoes. Beat in 1 egg, 1/3 cup brown sugar, cinnamon and ginger. Set aside.
3. In another bowl, combine remaining eggs and brown sugar. Add corn syrup, butter and vanilla. Mix well. Stir in pecans.
4. Pour sweet potato mixture into pastry shell. Top with pecan mixture.
5. Bake for 60 – 70 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool on wire rack.
Serves 6 – 8.

Banana Pudding Pie      

Southern Decadence Desserts

Georgie Porgie would go bananas for this one. What could be a better combination than the classic pudding served up pie-style?

1/3 cup all-purpose flour
dash of salt
2 1/2 cups milk
2 egg yolks       
1 can sweetened condensed milk
2 teaspoons vanilla
45 vanilla wafer cookies  
3 cups sliced bananas
4 egg whites
1/4 cup sugar     

1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees.
2. In a medium saucepan, combine flour, salt, milk, yolks and condensed milk. Cook on medium-high heat, stirring constantly for 8 – 10 minutes.
3. Remove from heat and add vanilla. Layer cookies, custard and bananas in oven-safe glass pie dish.
4. To make meringue, in a bowl, whip egg whites and add sugar slowly until peaks form.
5. Spread or pipe meringue on top. Bake for 25 minutes. Cool at room temperature. Serves 8 – 10.

Sweet Lemon Pie

Delish’s Desserts

This pretty, tempting option has just the right amount of tanginess. Pucker up and enjoy! {Pictured right, top}

1 (8-ounce) package cream cheese
1/2 cup sugar
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
3 eggs
3/4 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon lemon zest
1 large prepared deep-dish graham cracker piecrust
whipped cream, for garnish

1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Mix cream cheese and sugar, stirring until creamed.
2. Add condensed milk. Stir well. Then add eggs. Mix until all are combined. Add lemon juice and zest.
3. Pour into prepared piecrust. Bake until set, about 20 minutes.
4. Chill pie until cool. Serve with whipped cream. Serves 8.

Classic Key Lime Pie

Burris Farm Market & Bakery

A slice, pictured above, of this unofficial hometown pie of the Bay area is always a must dessert.

1 cup heavy whipping cream
3/4 cup key lime juice
1 cup sweetened condensed milk
1 prepared graham cracker piecrust
lime slices, for garnish

1. Whip heavy cream.
2. In a separate bowl, combine key lime juice and condensed milk until creamy. Fold in the whipped cream.
3. Pour into piecrust and garnish with a lime slice. Chill before serving. Serves 6.

Blueberry Pecan Chiffon Pie

R Bistro & Pastry

This towering tart is so delicious that the creators keep mum on the recipe. What we do know is that airy sugared cream with berries and nuts is piled high in a handmade graham cracker crust. Order up a slice or a whole pie at the downtown Fairhope eatery.

American Cherry Pie

R Bistro & Pastry

Six days a week, Misty Rider serves up seasonal fruit sandwiched between thick, flaky layers of handmade crust. Whimsical leaf cutouts make this cherry option,  seen on cover, extra pretty for fall get-togethers. It’s so good that the recipe is a closely guarded secret.

S’mores Mini Pie          

R Bistro & Pastry

Experience the best part of a campout without braving the elements. Mini graham cracker crusts are piped to the brim with a velvety mocha filling and topped with a canopy of fluffy, slightly toasted marshmallow. {Pictured, right}

Easy as Pie

If your rolling pin is a little dusty and the last time you broke out the mixer was during the first Bush administration, simply pick up prepared versions of any one of these pies at your neighborhood shop. Call ahead to confirm availability. 

Burris Farm Market & Bakery • 3100 State Highway 59, Loxley. 964-6464.
Delish’s Desserts • 23 Upham St. 473-6115.
R Bistro & Pastry • 334 Fairhope Ave., Fairhope. 928-2399.
Southern Decadence Desserts • 1956 University Blvd., Suite B. 300-8304.

photos by Summer Ennis

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