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RECIPES | Perfecting Fall Pies with our own Chef Nini for the Food Network

Michelle Mannix


With Thanksgiving just around the corner, we're practicing our pastry skills at every opportunity (which means pie everyday until November 23rd, naturally). We had the pleasure of hosting the Food Network gang at the Cook Space studio, with a quick tutorial from our resident pie-xpert, Chef Nini, with some variations on classic seasonal fillings, her favorite decorations and some tips on how to have THE showstopper dessert at your holiday table.

Sharing a slice (or six, with the Food Network crew....)

Sharing a slice (or six, with the Food Network crew....)

Check us out as we share some tips and slices for our Food Network video here - and try your hand at some of the featured recipes below. For those interested in learning from Nini, first hand, we still have a few spots left in our Pie Making Workshop on the 18th!






2½ c        All Purpose flour

½ t           salt

1T            sugar

1c            cold unsalted butter

¼ c          ice cold water



In a mixing bowl, mix salt, sugar and flour together.

Add cold butter and rub butter into the flour.  Making butter pieces smaller than a pea size.

The flour should look sandy with lumps in it.

Add cold water a little at a time.  Just until the dough comes together.

Wrap the dough in plastic and let chill for at least 30 minutes.





5 Green tart apples (granny smiths are good)

1 lemon

almost 1 cup sugar

heavy pinch of salt

2t cinnamon

½ t nutmeg

4T flour



Cut apples into thin slices

Squeeze lemon juice onto apple to prevent from browning and to add acid to the filling.

Season apples with sugar, salt, cinnamon and nutmeg and taste the apples. (Apples should be sweet and a little sour)

Add flour and mix well.






5 ripe pears of your choice (Asian pears are not desirable in this application)

1 lemon

about 1 c sugar (depending how sweet/ripe the pears are)

1t cinnamon

½ - 3/4t cardamom

heavy pinch of salt

4T flour



Cut pears into ¼ inch slices

Squeeze lemon juice onto the pears to prevent from browning and to add a nice acid to the filling

Season pears with sugar, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom.  Taste and adjust seasoning to the ripeness of pears.  (Should be sweet and taste the cardamom)

Add flour and mix well.



SWEET POTATO FILLING (makes enough for 2 pies)



2# roasted sweet potatoes (hot)

2 sticks butter (cut into cubes)

2 cups sugar

1 cup milk

4 eggs

2t vanilla extract

1t cinnamon

2t salt (I know that seems like a lot but trust me)



Roast the sweet potatoes whole with the skin on until a fork can easily go through them.

Peel the sweet potatoes and put the insides in a mixing bowl.  Make sure potato is hot.

Add butter to the sweet potatoes and mix until butter is incorporated.

Add sugar and mix

Then add salt, cinnamon, vanilla, and milk.  Mix until incorporated

In separate bowl, whisk eggs and then add them to the sweet potato mixture.

Can make up to 3 days in advance if kept in container in fridge and will last longer in the freezer.