Pies I've Spied

A journey through the crust.

A recent trip to DC had us running into Dangerously Delicious Pies on H Street BEFORE dinner - just to make sure I wouldn’t miss the opportunity to choose from their extensive range before closing. I decided on whole blackberry pie, whole chocolate peanut butter chess pie and slices of key lime and something called “white trash”. 

The white trash wasn’t much of a hit (a kind of custard pie with a cinnamon brulee top) but the key lime here is always good. The blackberry satisfied the not-so-sweet tooth among us and was packed with jammy, blackberry goodness and a terrific crumbly crust. But the top spot goes to the peanut butter chess: a dense chocolate torte-style with a swirl of peanut butter on the top. And the best bit? This place is open late - we visited just before 9pm on Sunday.

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Salted Caramel Apple pie at Four & Twenty Blackbirds, Brooklyn. Flaky pastry held up well even under caramel sauce. Shards of sea salt on top to give it kick. Served room temperature my only gripe otherwise, lovely. www.birdsblack.com

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Does it even count? Diet pie, spotted by Alice, NYC.

Does it even count? Diet pie, spotted by Alice, NYC.

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Lucky!

Cup of Pie
serves 4

6 granny smith apples, reserve 1 for pastry topping
1/4 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
3 tablespoons brandy
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 egg, mixed with water for egg wash
1/2 frozen puff pastry sheet, thawed
4 ramekins, about 3 1/2-inch diameter
confectioners sugar for dusting

Preheat oven 375 degrees F. Peel and cut 5 apples in a medium dice and place in a large bowl. Add lemon juice and brandy to diced apples; toss to combine and set aside. In a large saucepan over moderate heat combine white sugar, brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, salt, butter and cornstarch. Add in diced apples to sugar mixture and stir until well combined, cook for 15-20 minutes until apples start to become soft. Meanwhile on a floured surface roll out pastry sheet to 1/8-inch thickness. Using a cookie cutter or bottom of a glass, cut out four 4-inch circles.Transfer pastry to a lined baking sheet and using a fork prick pastry circles, brush with egg wash and refrigerate for 5 minutes. Using remaining apple cut 4 rounds of 1/4-inch thick. Fill ramekins with apple filling, top with pastry circle and then apple round. Transfer to a baking sheet and bake for 15-20 minutes until pastry is golden brown. Dust with confectioners sugar and serve.

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I want to eat this. Dainty and delicious ‘cup of pie’ made by the super-talented Jewels of New York. They fed us at our wedding. I love them. Hi Diana and Lisel!

I want to eat this. Dainty and delicious ‘cup of pie’ made by the super-talented Jewels of New York. They fed us at our wedding. I love them. Hi Diana and Lisel!

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Key lime amazingness from Joyces in Brooklyn, courtesy of Libby.

Key lime amazingness from Joyces in Brooklyn, courtesy of Libby.

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Pies from Hill Country Chicken, NYC. Expected greatness, got goodness. Cowboy pie (choc chip, caramel, coconut, some other kinds of deliciousness) and Pecan Pie. 

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It’s the self-contained nature of the pie that appeals.

— paraphrasing Best Bits Brennan.

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Eric’s homemade pecan pie. So delicious we didn’t let it set hence, gooey-ness.

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The dream is real. www.dangerouspiesdc.com. Open ‘til 3am.

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