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Video: Dig in: Make scrumptious summer stack pies

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    >>> it is time to head into today's kitchen for a delicious dessert. we are stacking up pies.

    >> i love it. now can you have a taste of everything based on a southern tradition stack pies are back in vogue. "the new york times" best appetite columnist melissa clark is here to help us stack some pies.

    >> genius.

    >> this was not my idea. this is something traditional from the '30s in the south. mountains of north carolina , you take a pie, stack another one on top, then another one on top and you take it to the party. i'm going to make a blueberry pie and lemon pie , then stack them up. we want to cook our blueberries. cup of blueberries in here, lemon juice , a little sugar and a little tapioca. that's the thickener. let that cook for about two minutes. also over here, little parchment paper . homemade pie crust . that's bake off really well. you want it sturdy when you put the stuff in it. parchment paper on the bottom so it doesn't scoop. here's the blueberry goop. mix that with fresh blueberries.

    >> eggs and a whisk.

    >> that's what you're supposed to do!

    >> dump it in. that's the blueberry pie with lemon zest , sugar and a little bit of salt.

    >> it's all on our website.

    >> you take fresh lemon zest , lemon section, put it in the food processor .

    >> are you doing these strategically blueberry and lem ton stack these two?

    >> yes. you want flavors that go well together. you need the sugar for the lemon.

    >> just dump it in?

    >> great. that's corn starch to make it thick. pinch of salt. turn it on. that's melted butter. add that in a second. just put it right through there for me. there is goes. that goes in the same thing in a prebaked crust. you can bake them at the same time. that one goes for an hour, this goes for 30 minutes .

    >> he's very anxious for the next part.

    >> come taste! this is the best part. remember the blueberry pie and lemon pie ?

    >> how do you stack it.

    >> just give me something to put in my mouth. i'm ready to go.

    >> put this pie on that one.

    >> under.

    >> i got it.

    >> i'm going to help you -- one, two, three. chocolate fudge on the bottom, pecan on top.

    >> is there a bad combination?

    >> there is. you got to mix it up, sweet and salty.

    >> what's the tloilimit to stacking? why not three or four?

    >> right here. your dream has come true. start tasting it and tell me what you think.

    >> i can tell you it is going to be amazing.

    >> what's in carson's stack .

    >> a heart attack.

    >> no, it's beautiful. on the bottom we have a chocolate -- these we bought from four and 20 black birds in brooklyn. you can buy three amazing pies. if you stack them up like this, it is a homemade dessert. this is perfect for people who love really sweet things like me, for example. fudge on the bottom. fudge pie, like a brownie, pecan on top.

    >> my god! what are you doing!

    >> go for it!

    >> this is the quadruple.

    >> this is the grandmother of

TODAY recipes
updated 7/23/2013 10:30:28 AM ET 2013-07-23T14:30:28

Recipe: Bourbon fudge and brown butter pecan stack pie

Ingredients
  • For the crusts:
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, preferably a high-fat, European-style butter like Plugra, chilled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 8 to 10 tablespoons ice water
  • Brown butter pecan pie filling:
  • 1 cup maple syrup
  • 1/2 cup dark brown sugar
  • 2 cups pecan halves (about 6 ounces), toasted (see note)
  • 4 tablespoons unsalted butter
  • 3 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 3/4 cup melted butter (1 1/2 sticks)
  • 3 large eggs, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup unsweetened cocoa
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 tablespoon Bourbon
  • Whipped crème fraiche, for serving
Preparation

Make the pie crust: In a food processor, briefly pulse together the flour and salt. Add butter and pulse until mixture forms chickpea-size pieces (3 to 5 one-second pulses). Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse until mixture is just moist enough to hold together. Form dough into two balls, wrap each with plastic and flatten into disks. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before rolling out and baking.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Grease the bottoms of two 9-inch pie pans and line with parchment paper.

Using a lightly-floured rolling pin, roll out each pie crust on a lightly-floured surface. Gently roll out the dough to fit a 9-inch pie pan, dusting with flour if the dough is sticking. Fold the dough in half and transfer to the pie pans. Carefully press the crusts into the pans and crimp the edges. Return the pies to the refrigerator for 20 to 30 minutes. When ready to bake, gently press foil into each pie crust and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, remove the foil and pie weights and then bake for an additional 7 to 10 minutes, or until crusts are a light golden brown. Transfer the pie crusts to a rack to cool slightly.

Reduce the oven to 350 degrees.

Make pecan pie: In a medium saucepan over medium-high heat, bring the maple syrup and brown sugar to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook until the mixture is slightly thick and all the sugar has dissolved, about 5 to 6 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool. In a small saucepan over medium-high heat, melt the butter, then let it cook until it turns a deep caramel color and smells very nutty, about 8 minutes. Set aside to cool. In a medium bowl, whisk together syrup mixture, eggs, brown butter, vanilla, cinnamon and salt. Fold in the pecan halves. Pour filling into crust and transfer to a rimmed baking sheet. Bake until pie is firm to touch but jiggles slightly in the center when moved, about 35 to 40 minutes. Let cool to room temperature before serving.

Make fudge pie: In a medium bowl, combine fudge pie filling ingredients. Pour into the prebaked crust and bake on a rimmed baking sheet for 35 to 40 minutes, or until the center is just set (you can bake it alongside the pecan pie). It should still be wet if tested with a toothpick, like brownies. Allow to cool completely in the pan.

When the pies have completely cooled, run an off-set spatula or paring knife around the edge of the crust. Carefully slide both pies out of their pans and onto plates, removing parchment if it sticks. Carefully slide the pecan pie off its plate and onto the fudge pie. Slice into thin wedges and serve with crème fraiche.

Note: To toast pecans, spread them out on a baking sheet and toast in a 325 degree oven until fragrant and golden, 12 to 15 minutes, stirring once or twice. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.

Serving Size

Makes 10 to 12 servings

Recipe: Lemon and blueberry stack pie

Ingredients
  • For the crusts:
  • 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 2 1/2 sticks unsalted butter, preferably a high-fat, European-style butter like Plugra, chilled and cut into 1/2-inch pieces
  • 8 to 10 tablespoons ice water
  • Lemon pie filling:
  • 2 large lemons
  • 1 1/4 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Pinch kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, melted
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 large egg yolks
  • Blueberry pie filling:
  • 5 cups blueberries
  • 2/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tablespoons quick cooking or instant tapioca
  • 2 tablespoons lemon juice
  • 1/2 teaspoon grated lemon zest
  • 1/4 teaspoon fine sea salt
Preparation

Make the pie crust: In a food processor, briefly pulse together the flour and salt. Add butter and pulse until mixture forms chickpea-size pieces (3 to 5 one-second pulses). Add ice water 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse until mixture is just moist enough to hold together. Form dough into two balls, wrap each with plastic and flatten into disks. Refrigerate at least 1 hour before rolling out and baking.

Grease the bottoms of two 9-inch pie pans and line with parchment paper rounds.

Using a lightly-floured rolling pin, roll out each pie crust on a lightly-floured surface. Gently roll out the dough to fit a 9-inch pie pan, dusting with flour if the dough is sticking. Fold the dough in half and transfer to the pie pans. Carefully press the crusts into the pans and crimp the edges.

Return the pies to the refrigerator for 20 to 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. When ready to bake, gently press foil into each pie crust and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Transfer to the oven and bake for 20 minutes, remove the foil and pie weights and then bake for an additional 7 to 10 minutes, or until crusts are a light golden brown. Transfer the pie crusts to a rack to cool slightly.

Make the blueberry pie: In a small saucepan, combine 1 cup of the blueberries, 2 tablespoons sugar, and the lemon juice and mash well until the blueberries are roughly pureed. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-low heat and let cook for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, toss together remaining blueberries, 2/3 cup sugar, lemon zest and salt and let macerate for 30 minutes.

Scrape cooked blueberry mixture into the bowl with the macerated berries and mix very well. Pour the blueberry filling into a prebaked crust. Bake the pie on a rimmed baking sheet for 20 minutes, drop the temperature down to 350 degrees and bake for another 30 to 45, until the blueberry filling is bubbling thickly (if you don't see the bubbles, the pie will not set). Transfer pie pan from the baking sheet to a wire back to cool completely.

Meanwhile make the lemon pie: Grate the lemon zest and place it in the bowl of a food processor. Using a sharp knife, cut the tops and bottoms off of the lemons. Stand each lemon up and follow the curve of the fruit with the knife to remove the white pith. Cut the fruit into segments, removing the seeds. Place the fruit in the bowl of the food processor and add the sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Run the motor until thoroughly combined. Scrape the mixture into a large mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the butter, egg and egg yolks. Pour the butter-egg mixture into the lemon mixture and whisk to combine. Pour the lemon filling into a prebaked crust and bake at 350 degrees on a rimmed baking sheet until the custard is just set and very lightly browned, about 25 to 30 minutes (you can bake the lemon pie with the blueberry one if the timing works out). Transfer pie pan from the baking sheet to a wire back to cool completely.

When the pies have completely cooled, run an off-set spatula or paring knife around the edge of the crusts. Carefully slide both pies out of the pans and onto plates. Carefully remove parchment if it sticks to the pies. Carefully slide the blueberry pie off its plate and onto the lemon pie. Slice into thin wedges and serve.

Serving Size

Makes 10 to 12 servings

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