Pie School: Lessons in Fruit, Flour, and Butter

Sasquatch. 2014. 240p. photos. index. ISBN 9781570619106. pap. $24.95; ebk. ISBN 9781570619113. COOKING
Fresh out of an MFA program at the University of Washington, writer and baker Lebo founded Pie School, a small business offering pie-making courses in Seattle and other locations. The author's new cookbook incorporates essential information from such classics as Rose Levy Beranbaum's The Pie and Pastry Bible and Ken Haedrich's Pie and teaches readers skills they'll need to make a pie without a recipe, using whatever pans, crusts, fillings, sweeteners, and thickeners they have on hand. Lebo favors fruit pies (e.g., maple blueberry, three pear and gouda, gluten-free blackberry and honeyed mascarpone), advocates a food processor-free approach, reflects on pie symbolism and metaphor, and expresses strong opinions about small details (e.g., whipped cream should always be served on the side, never on top).
VERDICT An informed and rather romantic take on the art of the handmade pie.
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