Those of us who are pie lovers mourned the passing of the annual Pie Day contest put on by the now-shuttered Pie Pantry restaurant in downtown Belleville.
Fear not crust fans, Fezziwig’s Marketplace in Oldtown O’Fallon has stepped up to the (pie) plate with its first pie baking competition, set for July 15. There are two categories: traditional fruit pie and baker’s choice pies (cream, meringue, pecan, tomato, etc.).
Since this is the first year of the event, only eight pies are allowed in each category, said Joele Pinkerton, who’s in charge of the event.
The entry fee is $25, paid in advance at the awesome store, located at 225 W. First St. With your fee you get a Mason Cash ceramic baking dish — you must make your pie in it — and a Fezziwig’s spatula. (Mason Cash has been making baking dishes in England since 1800. The company is co-sponsoring the competition.)
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Judging is blind with pie delivery by 10 a.m. July 15. I will be judging, along with several other culinary experts from the bi-state area.
The prizes are amazing! In each category, first place gets a $100 Fezziwig’s gift card, with second place earning a $50 card and third a $25 card.
Additional awards from the judges include a Mason Cash rolling pin and flour shaker for Best Crust Overall and a Mason Cash measuring set for Most Creative Pie Overall.
If you wish to bake an additional pie or two (must be same as entry pie), you can enter the People’s Choice Award Competition and Public Tasting, which will take place from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. Each contestant will be assigned a table for their sampling pies. Fezziwig’s will provide sampling cups, plastic ware, napkins and sanitary gloves. (Make sure to bring your own server to cut the pies.)
Guests purchase voting tickets for 25¢ each and the money raised will be donated to the O’Fallon Township Food Pantry. At 2:30 p.m., the winner of the People’s Choice Award will be announced, earning a Mason Cash measuring set and a $100 Fezziwig’s gift card.
Want more information? Call 618-726-2230. And, even if you don’t enter the contest, visit the business; it’s a truly beautiful place to shop for tea, wine, gourmet foods, unique balsamic vinegars and olive oils, culinary gifts and more.
I’ve provided a winning recipe here from the 2016 National Pie Championship. It’s complicated — and there’s no photo, but there may be a home baker out there who’ll be up for the challenge!
Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org, 618-239-2664 and follow me on Twitter @BoyleSuzanne. Write to 120 S. Illinois St., P.O. Box 427, Belleville, IL 62222-0427.
Lemon Raspberry Ripple Pie
Christopher Taylor, of Atlanta, was one of the 2016 winners in the amateur category of the annual National Pie Championship, sponsored by the American Pie Council.
1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 1/4 teaspoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon baking powder
8 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, in 8 pieces
4 tablespoons vegetable shortening, cold
1 teaspoon cider vinegar
1/4 cup water, cold
LEMON CREAM FILLING LAYER:
2 egg yolks plus 1 egg, room temperature
1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup lemon juice
RASPBERRY CREAM LAYER:
1 1/2 cups frozen raspberries
1/4 cup sugar
Zest of half of a lemon
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 egg yolk
4 teaspoons cornstarch
Pinch of salt
1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold
LEMON RASPBERRY RIPPLE LAYER:
3 egg yolks
1 cup sugar
Zest of 1 lemon
1/2 cup lemon juice
Pinch of salt
2 teaspoons gelatin
4 teaspoons water
1/4 cup egg whites
1 cup heavy cream
1/2 teaspoon raspberry extract or Chambord liqueur
1/2 cup lemon curd, homemade or store-bought
1/2 cup reserved raspberry cream layer (above)
1 cup heavy cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar
2 tablespoons piping gel*
1/4 cup reserved raspberry cream layer (above)
Crust: Mix flour, sugar, salt, and baking powder in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse in the butter until the pieces are the size of large beans. Pulse in the shortening until mixture resembles coarse wet sand and there are no pieces larger than peas.
Add the vinegar to the water. Pulse in the water mixture until incorporated but before a dough ball forms.
Remove the dough from the processor and pat into a 4-inch disc on a sheet of plastic wrap. Wrap tightly and refrigerate for at least 3 hours.
Roll out the pie dough out to a circle large enough to fill a 9-1/2 inch deep-dish pie pan. Line the pan with the rolled crust and crimp the edges as desired. Freeze for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, preheat oven to 425 degrees.
Line the dough with parchment paper and pie weights. Bake for 18 minutes.
After 18 minutes of baking, remove the weights and parchment. Continue baking until the crust is golden brown, 5 to 10 minutes more. While the crust is baking, mix together the lemon cream filling (below).
After the crust is removed from the oven, reduce the oven temperature to 325 degrees.
Lemon cream filling layer: Whisk together the eggs until combined. Whisk in the sweetened condensed milk and salt.
After the baked crust is removed from the oven, whisk the lemon juice into the egg mixture. Pour the filling into the warm pie crust.
Bake at 325 degrees until the center is set, about 25 to 30 minutes. Cool pie to room temperature before refrigerating. Refrigerate for at least 3 hours before topping with the raspberry cream layer.
Raspberry cream layer: Bring the frozen raspberries, sugar, lemon zest, and lemon juice to a boil in a pot. Simmer for 5 minutes and transfer to a blender.
Process the mixture in the blender until smooth. Strain through a sieve to remove seeds and return the mixture to the pot.
Whisk the egg yolks, cornstarch, and salt into the mixture and bring the mixture to a boil. Boil for 1 minute. The mixture will thicken.
Whisk in the butter until completely melted. Transfer to a bowl and refrigerate until mixture is completely chilled.
Smooth a 1/2 cup of the raspberry cream over the chilled lemon cream filling layer. Refrigerate while preparing the lemon raspberry ripple layer.
Reserve an additional 1/2 cup of raspberry cream for adding to the lemon raspberry ripple layer (below) and another 1/4 cup for adding to the whipped cream topping (below).
Lemon raspberry ripple layer: In a pot over low heat, whisk together the eggs, yolks, sugar, lemon zest and juice, and salt. Whisk constantly and cook until the mixture thickens, about 10 minutes.
Transfer mixture to a bowl and refrigerate until completely chilled, about 1 hour.
When the lemon mixture is completely chilled, add the gelatin to the water and set aside.
Whip the pasteurized egg whites to stiff peaks. Fold the egg whites into the lemon mixture.
Gently heat the gelatin mixture until the gelatin is dissolved and mixture is warm but not hot.
Whip the heavy cream, gelatin mixture, and raspberry extract to stiff peaks. Fold the whipped cream into the lemon mixture followed by the lemon curd.
Gently drop spoonfuls of the lemon mixture on top of the chilled pie and top with small spoonfuls of the raspberry cream. Alternate the layers until all of the lemon mixture and raspberry cream are used. Gently swirl the lemon and raspberry cream mixtures together with a small spatula to create a rippled effect. Decorate with the topping, below.
Refrigerate pie for at least 4 hours before serving.
Topping: Whip together the heavy cream, powdered sugar and piping gel until mixture holds stiff peaks. Stir in the reserved raspberry cream. Decorate the top of the pie as desired.
*Not familiar with piping gel? It’s used to stabilize whipping cream and make those stiff peaks. Wilton is the best-known brand. Check Toot’s Cake & Candy Supply in downtown Belleville for it.