Sugar Pie

I think I should change the name of this pie-making project from “50 weeks of Pie” to “50 weeks of Disasters.” Sheesh.

I had a lot of trouble picking a pie for this week. Most fruit is out of season, and there’s no way I’m going to spend $6 on a package of strawberries, so it’s basically apple or nothing. Non-fruit pies often have a graham cracker crust and I really want to practice my pastry skills, or they have meringue and I’m avoiding that for now.

I was going to make a chocolate cream pie, but yesterday afternoon when I finally got around to reading the recipe all the way through I realized it had to set for 24 hours before cutting. And I really wanted the pie to be ready for Thursday evening, because Sir Monkeypants was having his poker buddies over, and poker buddies equals pie testers equals less pie in my own belly. Which is good.

So at the very last minute I decided to try a Sugar Pie. I went online and cobbled together my own version from about 16 other recipes.

Here’s the result:

Sugar Pie

Looks kind of sketchy, don’t you think? It smelled good, though. And let me say, the crust was really good. I had my usual stress out and flip out and swearing festival while making it, but this time, on Karen’s advice, I cut back on the amount of water I was using and it really helped the crust hold together and not stick to the counter. The result was super flaky and super tasty — at least a B+.

Now I just have to work on rolling it out into a circle shape — I always seem to end up with a square, and then I’m trying some crazy cut-and-paste technique to fill in the sides that aren’t quite covered in the pie plate, and GACK, swearing results.

The filling wasn’t quite as successful though — it did not set. Here’s what it looked like after cutting, in all its oozing glory:

Sugar Pie, after cutting

Part of the problem is that the recipe called for an egg, and I didn’t have any, so I tried an egg replacer, which is really only good for binding, and not so good for setting stuff. Another problem is that the poker buddiers were VERY excited to see pie, and wanted to cut it as soon as possible. There’s a (slim) chance that it might have set up a bit better if I had let it sit overnight.

In the end we had to kind of scoop out the pieces with a spoon and serve them in a bowl — with a little cool whip:

Sugar Pie, in the bowl

The pie might be runny, but oh man, was it ever delicious. There is SO much sugar in this baby that we all almost went into diabetic comas. The filling is made from brown sugar, whipping cream, and a little butter, so you can see how it might be compared to eating a whole bowl of caramel ice cream topping. YUM.

But definitely a special treat — not to be eaten lightly!

I think if I were to make this again, I’d do tarts instead. They’d be smaller, so not so much sugar overload, and if they didn’t quite set up, it wouldn’t matter as much.

I’ve ordered a couple of pie cookbooks online and they hopefully will arrive in time for next week. I’d like to try something new, but if the books don’t get here in time, I think I’ll just do apple again — I’m encouraged by my pastry this week and a fruit pie, with a topper, would be great practice.

15 thoughts on “Sugar Pie

  1. Coloured Marbles (from my blogroll) had a Sugar Pie post recently. I’m sure she’d email you her granny’s special recipe if you’re interested. Meanwhile, kudos on the crust! That’s 90% of your battle won, right there. You can make some great winter pies with root vegetables, too – sweet potatoes, parsnips/carrots, squash, pumpkin – even some savory pies or tropical fruits which are in season now and reasonably priced. Like persimmons. It Ain’t Meat Babe recently had a recipe for some sort of persimmon cobbler or something.

    1. I can’t believe I missed that post by Woodsy. I’m off to her blog to check it out. I must say I can’t keep my hands off of the remaining sugar pie today, so it’s worth it to make another, I think.

      I did see Jen’s post on It Ain’t Meat Babe about persimmons, but it scared me. Baby steps!

  2. smokingtoaster

    I laughed about your egg substitution — that’s exactly something I would have done. Not that I do a lot of cooking/baking, but I resolved last year to always have eggs in the house, and I did a pretty good job of that.

    I also have the same problem rolling out dough. It sounds so easy, but it’s really not. I buy this pre-made pizza dough from Trader Joe’s and I can’t roll it out into a circle to save my life — it always comes out sort of square-shaped. I’ve given up on rolling and I just press it into our pizza pan (yup, that one) and spread it out with my hands.

    capnplanet’s mom is a champion baker and I’ve seen her “patch” her pie dough, too.

  3. famethrowa

    How about Butterscotch pie? That was always Nana’s specialty (although mom’s nemesis).

    (If you do that one, please let me know, and I’ll come over especially. 🙂 )

  4. famethrowa

    Oh, and I almost always have eggs, so if you ever want just 1 or 2, let me know, and perhaps I could provide. (Or ask a neighbour. Are you avoiding eggs in hopes that CJB will eventually try a pie, or is it because you don’t want to buy 6 eggs when you only need one? If you’re doing 1 pie a week, you’d probably get through a carton of 6 eggs before they expire. Or maybe you could buy eggs whites in a carton. They freeze pretty well, and you can portion them out into ice cub trays.)

  5. Wow, you did great! Nice work on the crust! By the way, I’ve been making pies for years and I still have to “paste” together the crust to fit well into the plate – my mum did too and she made pies for eons. The trick is using cold water to act like glue – a lifesaver.

    If I were there I would totally lend you the best pie book I’ve ever used (now out of print of course) – Pies and Tarts with Schmecks Appeal by Edna Staebler (who of course you would know since you lived in Waterloo). It’s in storage in Ottawa but I am seriously going to get it out of the Waterloo Public Library this weekend and email you the lemon puff pie recipe. You HAVE to make it! She has great non-fruit season pies in there. Also, her key lime is AWESOME too. I’ll send them both to you. And being Edna, they’re super easy.

    1. Just checked the Ottawa library, and they don’t have it (just her first two books). If you find it in Waterloo, let me know. In the meantime, I’ll poke around online for a used copy. You can’t beat Edna, she is the QUEEN!

  6. Hello, here I am. Yes, XUP is right, I would be happy to share it with you… Send me an email. It was my great grandmother’s recipe. Or, wait, and I will post it. It’s about time I got back to blogging. Happy New Year.

  7. that is my most favorite pie of all. i use a can of eagle brand, it makes the filling nice and custardy-like. no advice on crust. mine comes out of a box, so i am so incredibly intimidated by the fact that you make your own!!

  8. The last sugar pie I ate… a VERY little piece of have little dough balls in it… which was cool because it cut the sweetness…

  9. I LOVE sugar pie. I haven’t had any in ages. I’ve never baked one . . . you might just be my hero. My pie crusts are always square too – definitely need to learn the secret of nice round pie crusts 🙂

    p.s. there is NOTHING wrong with pie in a bowl!!!

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