Happy (day before) Thanksgiving! Every year in the week so before Thanksgiving, I receive at least one email from a friend or a friend of a friend that goes a little something like this "I think I want to make a pie this year for Thanksgiving. I have never made a pie before ever. Do you have a recipe you recommend? Or any tips?"
Now, I am FAR from being a pie making expert. I do enjoy making pies but a lot of time my pie crusts look like something a four year old crafted from Play-Doh. But pies do not have to look like something from a magazine photo shoot. Put a sweet fruit filling inside a buttery crust and who care what it looks like because it will be completely delicious to eat.
That said, if you are making a pie for the first time, I always defer to Martha Stewart. Her pate brisee is my go-to pie crust recipe and her sour cherry pie filling (if you cannot find sour cherries, sweet ones work just fine) is a good basic recipe. But if you want to mix it up a little, I have found some great pie recipes in the Parade magazine insert to the Sunday paper. (I still subscribe to the Sunday paper because as a former newspaper delivery girl in middle school, I like to support the industry. Even if I only really read the coupons, the Target and CVS ads, and the little Parade insert.). It is a collection of 26 great pie recipes!
We had our office Thanksgiving potluck last week and the food was all so good that I ate so much that I did not eat dinner that night. I made mini pies because they are easy for potluck situations and I used my mixed berry filling recipe and the Maple Blueberry and Browned Butter Pecan from the article. It was the first time I have made a pecan pie and I burned two sticks of butter before I successfully browned the butter but the end pies were so good.
(That's a leaf on top of the berry pie. It just sort of looks like Texas.)
Happy Thanksgiving! Enjoy all the pie!