CIA Recipe: Decorating a Double-Crust Pie

Double-Crust Pie

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Virginia Muré
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Hyde Park, NY – The leaves are changing here at The Culinary Institute of America in Hyde Park, NY, and few things say "fall" like the scent of a freshly baked pie. Whether it's apple, pumpkin, or your own seasonal favorite, pie is one of the simplest ways to welcome the cool autumn weather. This year, give your best recipes a makeover with decorating tips from CIA Chef Kristina Migoya.

An excellent pie can be broken down into two important elements: a flaky pie crust and a flavorful filling. Both can be achieved easily through the use of quality ingredients and practiced technique. Experiment with different flours, fats, and fruits to find the results that best suit you—after all, the best pie is the one you want to eat!

Take advantage of the season's bounty and fill your pies with local fruits and vegetables. Try variations on the classics, like caramel apple, pumpkin streusel, and cranberry pecan. And remember, chocolate is always in season.

Most bakers (at home and professional) have a tried-and-true pie pan, often one that's been passed down from generation to generation. Made from a wide variety of materials, each one will affect the outcome of a pie differently. Metal pans slow the bake time of a crust, which may result in a soggy, underbaked crust. Glass pans, which are very popular, transfer heat to the crust and cause it to bake quickly.

Some pies exude beauty through simplicity, but even a basic apple pie can be glamorous. Decorated edges, layered cutouts, and beautiful lattices are all easier to do than you might think, and yield showstopping results. With some easy-to-find tools, you can create a pie that is worthy of a bakery display case.

In this video, Chef Kristina Migoya shows us an easy way to spice up your pies using pie dough cutouts. Fun and kid-friendly, this technique will make your pie the star at your holiday table for years to come.

The following recipes are from the upcoming CIA cookbook Pies and Tarts (Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, January 2014).


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Decorate your pies for the holidays with the help of the CIA! (Photo credit: CIA/Phil Mansfield)
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Founded in 1946, The Culinary Institute of America is an independent, not-for-profit college offering associate and bachelor's degrees with majors in culinary arts, baking and pastry arts, and culinary science, as well as certificate programs in culinary arts and wine and beverage studies. As the world's premier culinary college, the CIA provides thought leadership in the areas of health & wellness, sustainability, and world cuisines & cultures through research and conferences. The CIA has a network of 45,000 alumni that includes industry leaders such as Grant Achatz, Anthony Bourdain, Roy Choi, Cat Cora, Dan Coudreaut, Steve Ells, Johnny Iuzzini, Charlie Palmer, and Roy Yamaguchi. The CIA also offers courses for professionals and enthusiasts, as well as consulting services in support of innovation for the foodservice and hospitality industry. The college has campuses in Hyde Park, NY; St. Helena, CA; San Antonio, TX; and Singapore.

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