It is a super exciting February for us 314Pie!
First, we are sad to say we are removing the mac and cheese pies from the menu for now. I know, and we are so sorry. However, we hope to lighten your sadness with the thrilling new pies we have to offer!
First, we have added a classic chicken pot pie. This ain’t your frozen Banquet pot pie! Chicken, onions, carrots, and peas all in thick, silky gravy. That’s right. I said silky.
Our veggie curry is back on the menu, boys! This pie features our housemade red curry with a coconut milk base wrapping potatoes, cauliflower, peas, carrots, and tomatoes in deliciousness, garam masala style. This pie has a medium amount of spice.
Annnnd the season specials this month are all about our love for the food, and we are using artichoke hearts to show where our love is!
We have a chicken, artichoke hearts pie done Italian-esque in a tomato sauce with mozzarella. For a vegetarian pie, we added spinach and Brie to our artichoke hearts for just a little French flair.
Last, but never least in out hearts, is our new dessert pie. We have made a peanut butter crust and wrapped it around chocolate. If you were to think of an inverted peanut butter cup, you would be thinking like we do!!
Our first day in SLU
First and foremost, thanks to everyone who came out and made our first two weeks awesome. We have sold out at every location so far, and we are ramping up production as fast as we can to meet the demand.
It is exciting to finally be making and selling pies to the public, and there are so many things we have learned in the "real world". Originally, we kept our pies handheld for ease of eating. This meant serving them without the pie tins and using a flavorful reduction to bind the pie filling. No tins also meant less waste.
However, the feedback we have gotten from our pie eaters is that they want more gravy! To meet that request, we are changing the recipe from a reduction to a more traditional gravy and serving the pies in tins to catch all of that goodness. In the future, we would like to experiment with combining the best of a gravy and reduction, if possible. Tins without food bits can be recycled, too.
Over the last two weeks, we also got our purveyors all set up. The quality of the ingredients will now be up to our standards. In addition, we are setting up the sous vide machine and working with the Health Department to get the okay for it. The sous vide method of cooking our meat just leads to the most tender filling.
Again, thanks for coming out and supporting us! If you have any comments or suggestions, we love to hear them. Know of a place you want to see us? Let us know that, too!
Just because we are having our opening day tomorrow, doesn't mean we haven't been experimenting with new pies!
We wanted to create a pie for the holiday season, and we thought a take on goose with chestnut stuffing would make an excellent pie. We had no luck finding chestnuts a few weeks ago (too early in the season), so we had to change up our experiment just a bit.
We roosted the goose and added in apples and walnuts and baked in the pie shells. For a vegetarian version, we chose to substitute roasted pumpkin for the goose.
In general, goose is a versatile meat and super tasty. It is a pretty fatty bird, so that makes for a very moist meat no matter how it is cooked. Adding the apples made for a nice sweetness to cut through the fat, and the walnuts gave the filling a little crunch in the smooth texture.
We'd still like to try out a goose pie with chestnuts, just to compare, but this pie was very tasty. In fact, one of tasters came home the next day craving a goose pie, so we are considering this experiment a success! Look for the goose pie coming later in December!
We have been busy! Once we got approval from Labor and Industry, we sent the truck for a new paint job while getting the paperwork ready for the Health inspection.
The truck is back and looking very spiffy! The Health Dept was awesome and approved our plans very quickly! We were happy to find a really cool commissary in West Seattle to bake our delicious pies, and we cannot wait to get in there and start baking! What is stopping us? Only one, last inspection from the Health Department. BUT! We have set of the date for the final inspection! Next Friday is the day! If we pass, we are ready to get on the road!
The dates have changed for our events at Skelly and The Bean! We will now be there on Mon 08/06 and Tues 08/07. You can reserve seats at brown paper tickets
!And, to get you thinking about what you want, here is the menu:Pies for Dinner
Steak and Onion Pie - Tender cubed beef and caramelized onions in a rich gravy. A classic.
Chicken, Cheese and Bacon Pie - Need we say more?
Pork and Peach Pie - Preserved peaches and pork loin are one of the best combinations ever.
Vegetable Curry Pie - Broccoli, cauliflower, carrots and potatoes in our house coconut curry.
Minestrone Pie - Roasted zucchini and tomatoes with white beans. Instead of pasta, pie crust! Sides
Chips (or Fries 'round these parts)
Garlic Mashed Potatoes
English Peas with Herbed Butter
Kale and Cucumber Salad with Avocado Dressing
Beet and Tomato SaladDessert Pies
Blueberry Pie - Blueberries layered with blueberries.
Peach Almond Pie - Peaches in a frangipane filling.
Add a scoop of ice cream.
Casey and Deke will be guest chefs at Skelly and The Bean
on August 6th and August 13th!! Casey and Deke will be serving up some of their fine standard fare along with some new creations. If you cannot wait for the truck to hit the street, please come meet us there!
We met Zephyr randomly at the University District Farmers' Market. She recognized Casey from some of the articles about 314PIE and invited Casey and Deke to take part in her guest chef events. These events are specifically geared to heighten awareness for emerging chefs. We are so lucky to be a part of such a vibrant community here in Seattle! And fostering community is exactly what Zephyr talked about when Deke and Casey went by her place.
Skelly and The Bean is focused on the farm-to-table concept in North Capitol Hill. Restaurant hours are 5:30 to 9:30.
This is our actual truck! Now that we have it, it is time for action! We have loads to do to get it street ready, including finishing the outside, installing pie warmers, and getting the licenses from various inspectors.
We're jumping on the Kickstarter.com
bandwagon to complete our journey to operating a fully functional food truck :)! Please checkout out the video! It has everything: sexy Australians, fat sacks of cash, adorable baby. It is great!
For our test, we used three kinds of cherries: sour, titan, and sonata cherries. Casey used an almond cream in half of the pies and an almond frangipane in the other half. For two of the pies, he froze the filling and shell together and baked them together while frozen. In two other pies, he baked the shells, made the filling separately, and only baked them together for about ten minutes. For the last two, he baked the filling and shells together unfrozen.
In the end, the decision was unanimous. Our panel loved the almond cream cherry pie in which the dough and the filling were cooked separately. That is what we took to the contest. Casey made two, just in case.
There was only one winning place in the pro category, and it went to Barbara of Pies by Barbara
. Congratulations! Next year, though, we plan on trying to dethrone the queen! The real winners were the pie-eating public!!
Some pics of the cherry pies Casey is trying out for High 5 Pie's First Annual Cherry Pie contest
! If you are free Sunday at 1pm and like cherry pie, you should come on to Capitol Hill's High 5 Pie and get some tasting!
These pies have the highest mileage and most ingredient social outsourcing! Casey wanted a lard crust and sour cherries to really amp up the flavor. We need to give a shout out to Rain Shadow Meats in Melrose Market
, where we finally found non-hydrogenated, rendered leaf lard for sale, *whew*!! We made a Facebook plea for anyone that could help us out going to the Queen Anne Farmers' Market for local cherries. Luckily, again friends showed us the love and picked some up! (If you were wondering, Casey and Deke had to take a trip that day to Vancouver, WA to pick up the truck!!) OK, now we had lard and tasty local cherries, but we still needed sour cherries. However, most places stock only already cooked, canned sour cherries. Since we were baking the pies, Casey needed frozen or fresh sour cherries. Finding a retail source for this was *hard*.
Deke rode around Seattle looking through all the stores while Casey called looking for sour cherries. Finally, in Interbay Whole Foods, we struck frozen sour cherry gold. It was the last bag of sour cherries in Seattle, and we owned it!! We finally ended up with the crust Casey wanted with the cherry mix he wanted! We finished our pie experiment with no time to spare, and had a unanimous vote for the best one to enter into the contest. Did our pie reign supreme with the cherry secret ingredient? Tune in tomorrow for the outcome!!
Fat is incredibly important in pie crusts (ok, it is incredibly important in everything, but we are trying to focus here!). In crusts, how one blends the fat into the flour will make the difference between those luscious flaky layers (it is the fat separating the flour and liquid mixture that is flakiness) and a lump of cookie dough. In our piexperiments, we tried butter and lard. We nixed shortening right out of the gate because it has a mouth feel we don't like - it is the stuff that coats your mouth in some baked goods. Just not for us.
Lard is simply awesome. No, seriously, it is. It has become a four-letter word, and that is really unfortunate. Lard is rendered pork fat, and it isn't as bad for you as you think. It is mostly made of monounsaturated fats. Pastry made with lard makes the dough super flaky. (Just so you know, I am getting most of my facts about fat today from Jennifer McLagan's excellent book, Fat: An Appreciation of a Misunderstood Ingredient, with Recipes
. It's an amazing read that includes everything you want to know about fats and amazing recipes like Pumpkin and Bacon Soup).
Obviously, lard is not going to work for the vegetarian pies. (Everytime I type "vegetarian", I have Jennifer Paterson's, of Two Fat Ladies fame, voice going off in my head.) Now, we love vegetarians here, but we really cannot make a vegan crust, sorry guys. But, the question becomes: is it worth creating two kinds of crust? One butter-based crust for the veggies, and the other lard-based for meat pies. We here at 314PIE are mainly concerned with *taste*, though, so we conducted a series of piexperiment until we nailed both a veggie and lard crust.
For now, we are opting for butter crust. We'd still like to add lard crust for meat pies later, but we need a source. Know any good purveyors of lard?
Next post we'll talk about the liquid portion of our crust. Until then, eat on!