Saturday, March 14, 2015

Indiana sweet cream pie for Pie Day

While you're waiting for fresh fruit to come back into season, bake a traditional Indiana sweet cream pie instead. Filled with a sweet and creamy cinnamon flavored custard, this pie is sure to become a new favorite in your house!

Have you heard about Pi Day? Pi, as many of you may remember from math class, is approximately 3.14 (or 22/7, if you want to get more specific). Math fans like March 14 because it's 3/14, or Pi Day. Foodies and bakers took this to the next level and decided to call this day Pie Day as well. Because you know, homonyms.

I finally decided to make a pie for Pie/Pi Day this year. Rather than bake a fruit or chocolate pie, I decided to try something that I'd only heard good things about but have never tried - Indiana sweet cream pie. It is supposed to be this wonderfully smooth and creamy custard dessert. In my mind, it sounded like creme brulee in pie form (but without the crunchy top).

In reality, this pie was smooth and creamy, just as I imagined. The addition of cinnamon and nutmeg made my house smell like apple pie, just without the apples. The crust was nothing short of amazing, since it was an all-butter crust that was perfectly flaky.

When I get the opportunity to visit Indiana, I will have to try a local version of this pie and see how this version stacks up!

Happy Pie/Pi Day!

Indiana sweet cream pie
Crust
  • 1 and 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 10 Tablespoons (1 and 1/4 sticks) unsalted butter, cut into 1/4-inch slices
  • 3 Tablespoons cold water
Filling
  • 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 and 1/2 cups heavy cream
  • 1 and 1/2 cups half and half
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
Directions
Make the crust: In a food processor, pulse together the flour, sugar and salt about 2 or 3 times. Add in the sliced butter and pulse until crumbly. Then add the 3 Tablespoons of water and pulse in quick bursts until the mixture resembles wet sand.

Take the dough out of the food processor and knead on a lightly floured surface. Shape into a ball and flatten into a disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and allow to sit in the refrigerator for at least 2 hours before using.

Once the crust has chilled, take it out of the refrigerator and roll it out on a flattened surface with a rolling pin. Roll it out to about a 10" or 11" diameter. Transfer to a 9" or 10" pie plate and crimp the edges. Place the pie pan in the refrigerator until ready to bake.

Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugars, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Slowly add in the heavy cream, half and half and vanilla. Mix until smooth. If your mixture is lumpy, you can strain it in the next step.

Pour the batter into your prepared pie crust (place a fine mesh sieve over the pie crust if your filling is a bit lumpy).

Bake in your preheated oven for 35-45 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the center is set.  Allow the pie to cool before serving.

Pie should be stored at room temperature or in the refrigerator and will keep for a few days.

Yield: One 9" pie; about 8 servings

Source: Serious Eats

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