You can impress your guests with your baking abilities in many different ways. They taste the food and think to themselves how delicious everything is. Sometimes, you have to spend hours to prepare a meal, get just the right stuff, use your spices or ingredients. But other times, you get lucky, and you find that one recipe that makes you seem like a fabulous chef, while you actually put out little effort at all. That’s how it will be when you learn to braid pie dough. It doesn’t take much effort but you create a pie that looks like it was purchased at a fancy bakery. It’ll be our little secret, though.
Now, you might be thinking “I’ve never been able to braid hair…”. But the two are nothing alike. It’s easy to braid pie dough because you don’t have to hold a bunch of hair among assorted fingers. The dough is so easy to make that it practically braids itself. To begin, roll out the pie dough on a floured surface. The dough can be made from your own recipe or can even be frozen pie dough. If it’s frozen, let it thaw to a little cooler than room temperature.
If you’re rolling out your own pie dough you can make it into a rectangle, which will work better for cutting the strips to make the braids. No matter what type of pie dough you’re using, cut long strips to be about a quarter-inch wide. You’ll need three for each braid and it will probably take more than one braid to go around the entire pie.
Lay three of the pie dough strips, side-by-side, on a floured surface. Take the strip on the right, cross over the center strip, and lay the strip you’re holding in the center. Then, take the left strip, cross over the center one, and lay the one you’re holding in the center. Continue to put the right strip in the center, and then the left one, until you’ve braided the whole strip.
Dampen the bottom of the braid with a little water and will stick to the pie like glue. Lay the dampened side on the pie, so that the edge of the braid lines up with the edge of the pie. If needed, lay a second braid of dough on the pie. Match up the left, right, and center dough piece, with the end of the first braid. Bake as you normally would.
You can put the braided pie dough on most any pie without a top crust, like pumpkin pie, sweet potato or chocolate pie. The braid makes the pie look more elegant and gets people thinking that you’re secretly a talented chef.
Braided Pie Dough
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