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How to Make a Pie from Scratch!
November 20, 2016

How to Make a Pie from Scratch!

The Thanksgiving holiday is just around the corner. Most families have an abundance of food with tasty sides, but there is always room for dessert!

Pies are mostly the theme for Thanksgiving, and pumpkin pie is at the top of the list. Being someone with southern roots, I have fond memories of lots of Thanksgiving's having sweet potato pie, which my mother would make plenty of for our large holiday spread with family. My mother is a decent cook, but she did do a shortcut, by using store bought frozen pie crust.

I have to admit, once you get used to making your own pie crust, you will not be interested in store bought crust moving forward. The flavor can't be beat! Its kind of like having a great sandwich which starts off with really good bread.

Practice, practice, practice, is the key to making a good homemade pie crust. My shortcut, is using a food processor. Keep these key points in mind when making this pie crust at home.

Pulse the mixture, with the butter until it resembles like coarse cornmeal.

Do not overwork the dough.

Always work with ice water and cold butter. (This helps to create flakiness for your pie crust)

So, I am sharing my Sweet Potato Pie recipe with inspiration from my mom. She always included a little bit of molasses for a deeper flavor and her choice of milk is always evaporated milk.

Also, warm spices are typically used, but I think using different spices can give a twist to anything. I've included cardamom. (commonly used in Indian cuisine)

I've included a small amount, as the taste of cardamom is on the stronger side. It also blends well with the other warm spices of cinnamon and nutmeg.

I hope you give this recipe a try if you love to bake. Wishing you a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday!

Chef Vanessa,

Ethnic Spicy Food &

Homemade Pie Crust-Pate Brisee)

(Makes two 10 inch pie crusts)


1 & 1/3 cups of cold unsalted butter

1/2 teaspoon of salt

1 tablespoon of sugar

6-8 tablespoons of ice cold water

(Sweet Potato Pie )

(Recipe using the pate brisee recipe above)


2 eggs

2 cups mashed sweet potatoes

1 stick of unsalted butter, melted

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/2 cup white sugar

3 tablespoons of molasses

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/2 teaspoon of ground cardamom

1/4 teaspoon of nutmeg1/4 teaspoon salt

1 cup of evaporated milk

(1/2 recipe pate brisee recipe)

To make the pie crust, Dice the butter into small pieces. Set aside.

Place the flour, salt and sugar in the bowl of the food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse a few times to mix.

Add the diced pieces of butter and pulse 8-10 times until the butter is the size of small peas. While the machine is running, pour in the ice water and pulse until the dough starts to form a ball.

Take the flour mixture, and dump onto a floured surface. Form the dough into a ball. Place into plastic wrap in the fridge for 30 minutes.

While the dough is in the fridge make the sweet potato filling, by combining all the ingredients (except the evaporated milk) into a large mixing bowl. Mix completely to incorporate.

Stir in the evaporated milk to complete. Set aside.

Take the dough out the fridge and roll out the pie crust into a circle, while turning and flouring the dough to make sure it does not stick to the board. Fold the dough in half and place into a pie pan and unfold to fit the pan. (If you are new to pie making, use a fork to adhere the crust to the pan.)

Pour the sweet potato filling into the pan and place the pie into the oven. Cook for 30 minutes or until a knife inserted in the center comes out clean. Let cool before serving. Serves 8.

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