National Pie Day-January 23, 2008

The American Pie Council selects a day each year to celebrate pie which is a part of our American heritage.

Pie has been around since the ancient Egyptians. In the 12th century, pies appeared in England and were predominantly meat pies.  Pie came to America with the first English settlers.  Pie crusts were once used to hold filling while baking and not eaten.

Today, pie is the most traditional American dessert which may have a delicious flaky crust or crumb crust. (Source:  American Pie Council)

Classic Chicken Pot Pie

  • 2-15 oz. cans mixed vegetables, drained
  • 1-10 oz. can cooked chicken, drained
  • 1- 10 3/4 oz. can cream of chicken soup
  • 1/4 tsp. thyme or sage
  • 2 (9-inch) ready-to-bake pie crusts

Heat oven to 350° F. In medium bowl, combine vegetables, chicken, soup and seasoning; mix well. Fit one pie crust into 9-inch pie pan; pour vegetable mixture into pie crust.  Top with remaining crust, crimp edges to seal and prick top with fork.  Bake for 30 minutes, or until crust is golden brown and filling is hot. Allow pie to cool slightly before serving.

Classic Crisco Pie Crust (8, 9, or 10-inch  Single crust)

  • 1-1/3 c. all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 1/2 cup well-chilled Crisco all-vegetable shortening
  • 3-6 Tbsp. ice cold water

Blend flour and salt in medium mixing bowl. Cut chilled shortening into 1/2-in. cubes.  Cut in chilled shortening cubes into flour mixture, using a pastry blender until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle half the amount of ice cold water over the flour mixture.  Using a fork, stir and draw flour from bottom of bowl to the top, distributing moisture evenly into flour.  Press chunks down to bottom of bowl with fork.  Add more water by the Tbsp., until dough is moist enough to hold together when pressed together.  Shape dough into a ball.

Flatten ball into 1/2-inch thick round disk. Roll dough from center outward  on a lightly floured work surface (or between two sheets of wax or parchment paper) into a circle 2 inches wider than pie plate. Transfer dough to pie plate by loosely rolling around rolling pin.  Center the rolling pin over the pie plate, and then unroll, easing dough into pie plate. Trim edges of dough leaving a 3/4-inch overhang.  Fold edge under.  Flute dough as desired.  Bake according to specific recipe directions.

Chocolate Oatmeal Pecan Pie with Flaky Yogurt Crust

For the crust:

  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp. salt
  • 1/8 tsp. baking powder
  • 3/4 cup Crisco Butter shortening
  • 1/4 cup plain yogurt

For the filling:

  • 2-1 oz. squares unsweetened baking chocolate
  • 1/3 cup butter or stick margarine
  • 1 cup light corn syrup
  • 2/3 c. firmly packed light brown sugar
  • 3 large eggs, lightly beaten
  • 1/2 tsp. salt
  • 2/3 c. quick cooking oats
  • 2/3 c. pecan halves

Heat oven to 350°.  Combine flour, salt and baking powder.  Cut in the butter flavor shortening using a pastry cutter, two knives or your fingertips.  Stir in the yogurt. Press crust mixture into bottom and sides of a 9-inch pie plate, leaving about 1/4-inch rim along top edge for crimping.  Using tines of a fork, gently press down crust all around top edge of pie plate; set aside.

Melt chocolate and butter in a double boiler with water simmering below; stir with a wooden spoon to combine.  Remove from heat and cool to lukewarm. Beat brown sugar, corn syrup, eggs and salt using an electric mixer until smooth. Using a wooden spoon, stir in oats and pecan halves until combined.  Add cooled chocolate and butter mixture to the filling and stir well. Pour into the unbaked crust.

Bake for 30-40 minutes, or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean.  Cool pie on a wire rack.  Serve warm or at room temperature, garnished with whipped cream, if desired.