Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Thanksgiving Pie Ideas

Pie for Thanksgiving is a big deal in my family, especially on my husband's side. Not only does there need to be plenty for the big day, with family sticking around all weekend, there needs to be plenty of leftovers! Apple and pumpkin are non-negotiable necessities and not to be messed with, but we always do at least a couple other kinds as well and there is always room for a little creativity. Peach, blueberry, and cherry are all frequent additions to the table. Last year I made a triple cranberry meringue pie (I think I found the recipe on the New York Times website), which was quite tasty but involved too many steps to make again for a holiday where food prep time is at a premium. Here are some other ideas to jazz things up without straying too far from tradition:

1. For apple pie, add a handful of cranberries
2. For pumpkin pie, add minced candied ginger or substitute maple syrup for some or all of the sugar
3. For peach pie, add some minced fresh or candied ginger
4. For peach, cherry, or berry pies, top with streusel topping instead of pastry crust
5. Mix apple and pear in a pie, or apple, pear, and poached quince
6. Mix different berries in one pie (e.g. blueberry, strawberry, and blackberry)
7. For berry, cherry, or peach pie, add a teaspoon of almond or hazelnut extract to the pastry dough
8. Combine peaches with blueberries or blackberries

And, of course, don't forget to have plenty of Snow's or Bart's ice cream on hand for the a la mode part. Vanilla is classic, of course, but we have found that Snow's ginger goes really well with most fruit pies - skeptical relatives have been converted!

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