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Food Innovations Blog

Popular Pies

April 26, 2011


After reading piles of food trend information for 2011 I have definitely seen some pretty out-there predictions. There is one trend though, that I’m very familiar with – pie. The resurgence in pie is very down to earth, but a trend to appreciate for the many creative abilities. Whether it’s sweet or savory, apple pie, or empanadas, pies allow for a range of possibilities.

Pies are essentially defined by the flakey dough made of 1 part water, 2 parts fat and 3 parts flour.  You want to keep the fat cold because the thin layers of fat in the dough are what melt when cooked, leaving you a light and airy crust.  The dough can be either baked or fried depending on the application and both methods are absolutely delicious.

In product development, pie dough is an excellent blank canvas that allows us to go many different directions.  Traditional pies, such as cherry pie, or chicken pot pie, rekindle memories from peoples’ childhoods.  These are sure winners when it comes to customer acceptability, but there are already a lot of manufacturers currently controlling the market.  I like to look at options that are less traditional, such as combining traditions, such as chicken pot pie empanadas, bite sized strawberry pies with a black-pepper crust, or even a lobster roller grill item in a cylinder of pie dough.  All of these ideas use a base that people are very comfortable with, pie dough, and unique flavor combinations or delivery options.  The key in any pie application is to get an irresistibly, flakey crust.  If your crust is lack-luster then your product is sure to struggle.  We have been working on a ‘just add water’ pie dough mix and it is turning out a wonderful crust.  I am stuffing it with anything I can get my hands on!  My taste buds are loving 2011, but my waist line is suffering…hmmm…healthy pie dough?  Looks like I may have found our next project!



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