It’s High Time for Pie Time!

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By Paula Deen

Once the temperatures drop and I start reachin’ for my coat on a regular basis, two things happen: I switch the thermostat to “heat” and I start baking pies.

I can’t help it. I suppose it began with my Grandma’s Coconut Crème Pie. I’d walk a mile over hot coals to get me a piece of that pie, with its homemade flakey crust and white, whipped center. The season didn’t matter; as long as you had a fork and an appetite, any time was a good time for Grandma’s pie. That’s what I keep trying to tell people: just because it’s November, you don’t have to limit yourself to pumpkin and pecan. In fact, my momma always made the most wonderful apple pie. Even some lemon meringue can bring just the right amount of refreshing citrus to break the season’s heavy savories.

Or better yet, make ‘em all.

When I pull out my baking set, I’m fixin’ to get serious. I don’t aim to just make a pie; I aim to make a number of pies worthy of a Thanksgiving centerpiece. Y’all know the kind I’m talkin’ about—those big delicious pies with a beautifully designed egg-wash crust. Us kids would sit there and eye those pies, waiting for the adults to finish eating their supper. We’d even offer to help clear the table just to speed things up. After what felt like a lifetime, I’d finally stuff a forkful of pie into my mouth and my eyes would roll back into my head with pure happiness.

My Grandmother’s secret to the perfect pie was rolled into the crust. In her book, a woman “earns her pearls” by makin’ a homemade piecrust. It’s almost impossible to find authentic, homemade piecrusts these day—they’re practically extinct. Sure, you can buy a passable frozen or refrigerated piecrust, but they don’t hold a candle next to the old timey, rolled out ones. Which is why I put together my instructions for a perfect pie dough. It’s an easy step-by-step process to make the perfect crust, just like Grandma did. It’s not an exact science so it takes some practice, but then again, I was never all that keen on science anyhow.

Once you roll out your dough, don’t forget the final touch: a little decoration. Grandma pressed floured fork tines into the edge of every pie she made. It was her special signature that us kids new to look out for. I tend to scallop my crust, but if I have some extra time I’m known to get a little fancy with cutouts and even braids (I share those and three more with y’all HERE).

Pies are at the heart of so many gatherings and celebrations, it’s no wonder that we love them so much. Whichever pies you decide to bake this season and however you go about decorating them, take a moment to enjoy the process—to breathe in the homey smells that fill your heart and your home. 

Now Get Baking!
Mom’s Apple Pie
French Coconut Pie
Douglas Bourbon Pecan Pie
Lemon Meringue Pie
Old-Fashioned Fudge Pie
Pumpkin Pie

Click here for more of my best pie recipes!

 

Read More From Holidays and Entertaining.

Read More From Thanksgiving.

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Reader Comments:

54321

I love your cooking so much if I need to make something new I always pull your recipe's up Debbie Barnwell DEC 24th 2013

By debbie Barnwell on December 24, 2013

54321

I don't care what they say you,ve been my Favorite since Justin Wilson

By Donna Barlow on November 27, 2013

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mE TOO PAULA, LOVE ME SOME GOOD PIES. I STILL RECALL LEMON MERAINGE LIKE MY MOM MADE AND MY AUNT MARY. MOM LOVED MAKING THE GRAHAMCRAKCER CRUST. AND IT WAS ALWAYS SO YUMMY. I HAVE MADE SO MANY FRESH BLUEBERRY AND APPLE OVER THE YEARS, BUT MY ROY LOVES MY APPLE THE BEST. HE DOES HOWEVER LOVED COCONUT CREME FOR SURE. I HEAR U ALSO ABOUT THE NEAT THINGS OUR LOVED ONES LONG AGO DID TO ADD SOMETHING SPECIAL TO THEIR PIES. BY THE WAY WHAT AN ADORBLE PHOTO ON COVER OF YOUR MAG. WITH U AND YOUR GRANDBAVIES. HUGS ROSIE

By R. HERDMAN on November 24, 2012

54321

Wishing Paula and the whole family a Happy Thanksgiving Day! Had the pleasure to see you at a Food Show in Morristown NJ a few years ago. Actually took a picture with Michael,your line was too long! Have watched your shows since they began and have enjoyed making many of your recipes. Pumpkin Gooey is my favorite!!

By Meg on November 17, 2012

54321

I justy love your shows and your son show i watch them everyday I wish i could afford one of your cook books but i cant i live on a fix income but every chance i get to get your receipes i get i just love your stuff all of it

By janet kirby on November 15, 2012

54321

enjoy

By cynthia on November 15, 2012

54321

Paula I love your show.I am retired and I watch everday. I have tried a lots of your recipes and they always turn out grate. I also have three of your books and I amoset always look in them to get something diffrount. I would like to the reciepe for a sugar free "creamcheese cake" and I whould like too know if you have ever heard of a "Blackberry Wine Cake". If so Will you tell me how you make yours. I have missplaced mine and it is time too get ready for the holidays Thanks for your help from time to time, I tried your Ox tail last Thanksgiving and I only got one piece out of amout 15lbs. thank you Paula and your sons for such a grate show. One of your Grateist Fans Deloris show.

By Deloris Sims on November 12, 2012

54321

paula, I made your peach tart how delicious that was..... thank you...

By patti Lewis on August 16, 2012

54321

im looking for recipe i saw on the show recently for an apple pie baked in a cast iron skillet with a frozen pie crust, like an upside down pie? ty. Love Paula and her family show.

By robbie j howe on April 10, 2012

54321

It was very interesting to read each recipe for Paula Dean's pies and see photos of them, some of them in a prepared for sale pie shell!

By Kathryn on November 09, 2011

54321

mY aUNT MARY MADE WHAT WE CALLED-BUTTERMILK PIE MUCH LIKE lEMON mERRAINGE. wHEN i NEEDED COMFORT. i HEAR U, I CAN STILL TASTE IT. sHE MADE APPLE STRUDEL. mY mOM;S PARENTS WERE FROM sWITZERLAND. i CAN;T WAIT TO SINK MY TEETH INTO APPLE PIE. mY rOY LOVES MY APPLE PIE THE BEST. GUESS IT IS ALL THE LOVE i ADD TO IT. happy Thanksgiving u u all

By rOSIE hERDMAN on November 09, 2011

54321

I always make my crust from scratch. It's quite simple and I use a recipe every time - the one on the can of shortening ("Yall" know which one). Matter of fact, my crust is so good that someone thought I used butter, but I only use shortening. I use my butter for baking other things.

By Autumnjoy on November 08, 2011

54321

I agree with you on Pie Season, Especially as the apples get ripe in our area. Saturday I made a Apple Jack (once called a Thrashers pie) pie. It takes almost 5 lbs of apples,1 cup of Brandy, 4 batches of pie crust, and you build (sorry Bake) it in a roasting dish. You would think that size pie would last a while. Nope it was gone by Monday. 1/2 gone saturday nite, even. It is a recipe from my Granma that she used to cook on the farm when the thrasher teams used to go from farm to farm helping harvest a crop. Big Trestle tables loaded with food. And one humongus pie. Rozann

By Rozann Osborn on November 08, 2011

54321

My favorite pie is pecan! Which I am baking one of today to take to my best friend as I head to Atlanta! Along with a mess of my fresh turnip greens!!!

By Luci Nation on November 08, 2011

54321

What blade are you using in the food processor?

By Missy on November 08, 2011

54321

love you love you love you!!!!!!!!!!!! would love to attend one of your shows cause i can smell what your cooking' and boy can i taste it. you have a great family it's great to see men who share their mamas cooking so we know it must be great. from my family to yours have a very happy holiday!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

By Gayle wants to know what's cookin'! on November 08, 2011

54321

would love to meet paula deen one day

By willie e. on November 08, 2011

54321

Love your show, and all of your recipes. U are on my bucket list ,and the only person I want to meet in my lifetime. Have you ever made a butterscotch blondie pie? I bought one at a cafe and they are really good!!!

By Hilda Withers on November 08, 2011

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Paula Deen
Paula Deen
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The Queen of Southern Cuisine muses about her recipes, life and family. See Posts

Brooke Deen
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Brandon Branch
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Cindy Edwards
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hi! wink i was wondering if you could share the recipe for the chiken/grape salad-the one that is pictured on the croissant above? thanks! wink sandra
Sandra Neuheimer-Huller in Chicken Salad: A Southern Staple on April 19, 2014 at 10:37 am

Where do I buy these magazines
in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 8:22 am

I WISH I COULD COOK. COULD I COME WORK FOR JUST ROOM AND BOARD AT YOUR NEW RESTURAUNT IN PIGEON FORGE FOR THE SUMMER? I WENT TO COLLEGE NOT FAR FROM THERE - HIWASSEE COLLEGE. YOU WOULDN'T HAVE TO PAY ME, I WOULD WORK FOR FREE JUST FOR THE EXPERIENCE. TAMMY LEVAN 19 SPENCER WAY KINGS PARK, NY 11754 HAPPY EASTER! CHRIST IS RISEN!
TAMMY L LEVAN in A Basketful of Traditions on April 19, 2014 at 4:31 am

Hi Bubbles, You have some great tips. Can't wait to read your other blogs! Please give Aunt Peggy a big hug from me and here is one for you! (((HUGS))) See you in May!
Jaci Pardun in 10 Quick Household Tips on April 18, 2014 at 11:05 pm

Paula, I am glad to know that I am not the only person who makes Easter Baskets for their adult children and mail them across the United States. My Daughter lives in Long Beach, CA and I not only sent her a basket but her husband and my granddaughter Reese. We also buy special Russel Stover Bunnies for each child too. My husband has the list in his phone... Sara .. Cookies 'n Crème.... Sidney and Stephen.. Peanut Butter Etc. It one of my favorite things to do for my kids.. no matter how old they get. And passing it along to my Grandchildren. It's even more special to me knowing we share a family tradition. Blessings and Happy Easter!!
Sharon Cason-Card in A Basketful of Traditions on April 18, 2014 at 11:03 pm