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America's Test Kitchen sforna da sempre ottimi libri di ricette e questo non sfigura affatto: 180 tipi di torte e dolci in crosta, dai più tradizionali alle varianti un pochino più sperimentali, comprese monoporzioni, pops e bicchierini, tutti testati nelle cucine della redazione con un format che garantisce il successo casalingo. Due motivi di particolare interesse: l'ottima cura formale in stile “comfort food”, che si esprime nelle coperture (intrecciate o croccanti o meringate, in tutte le varianti), e le torte con abbinamenti speciali (zenzero-prugna-pera, ricotta-limone-timo, uva spina-fiori di sambuco-meringa, fichi-ciliege-noci, cioccolato-macha-melograna). Per chi ha un interesse specifico, sono presenti torte con tipici ingredienti Usa (noci pecan, burro d'arachidi, zucca e patate dolci) o veri e propri dolci nazionali; unica difficoltà o fastidio, il sistema di pesi e misure (ma una tavola delle conversioni è presente nelle pagine finali, oltre ad un indice con un utilissimo calcolo delle calorie a porzione). Fotografia da Oscar.
Reviewed in the United States on 13 September 2019
I owe an apology to another reviewer. When I first read the reviews I thought there is no way they only offer a food processor method for the crust. I'm sure they offered another option, it's probably just hidden away somewhere, easily over looked. But no, every crust recipe is only given using a food processor. I mean you can google another method, but then again you can google pie recipes. For a large tome I would expect at least one none mechanical option.
that being said the crust is perfect. They have moved away from their vodka crust into a crust where you freeze and grate part of the butter, resulting in tender flaky crust. It does work.
This is a larger oversized book, weighing in at 3 lbs. It's 9x1x10. This can make it a bit unwieldy but because of the amount of content, quality and size of pictures. it would not be the same shrunk down.
There are lovely pictures. Not only of the recipes but step by step illustrations of technique.
Each recipe has a paragraph on why this recipe works, the ingredients laid out in list form, and then the directions, broken down in 1,2,3 format. The print is black on white paper.
Nutritional information is provided in the back, on pages 346-351.
There are gluten free crust options.
The index is alphabetical and makes it easy to find recipe by ingredient or name.
The first part of the book covers the types of pies covered. 1-double crust fruit pie 2- cream pie 3-custard pie 4-meringue pie 5-tart 6-galette 7-chiffon pie 8-ice cream pie
There is good reading on core pie baking techniques the difference in crusts, flaky, sturdy, short crust how to roll the dough filling the pie, blind baking covering, baking, cooling and storing. I highly recommend not skipping this part, especially if you are newer to pie making.
Next up is equipment and tools, with pictures and descriptions.
Ingredients, another chapter I highly suggest reading first. You will learn about flours, fats, sweeteners, eggs etc. after the main four it also goes into the pie pantry staples and miscellany. Everything from Milk to how to scrape a vanilla bean. Next is the chapters, mastering the classics. cream, custard, and curd pies upping your game elegant tarts pies big and small regional favorites icebox and cream pies pie and tart doughs topping, sauces, and more
techniques can be hidden in the book. I would think showing pie crust decorating techniques would belong in the back, with the crust recipes, but it's found starting on page 130, in the middle of the book.
overall I think this is an excellent pie book with enough variety to keep one entertained for years. The step by step directions and multiple how to pictures are very helpful. The crust option is an oversight but would not be enough to keep me from recommending the book.
The recipes are a nice mix of modern and traditional. they are in love with their whipped cream. The key lime pie is covered in it. For me it's a bit much but I can always put on less.
I made the pear butterscotch slab pie. It was delicious. I find pears often flavorless, this really helped give them flavor.
Sable breton tart with cranberry curd was amazing and will be a new way to serve cranberries on thanksgiving, and other times of the year
Sometimes I think ATK gets a little complicated or overwrought in their directions, but the results are worth the extra steps.
5.0 out of 5 starsComprehensive and Instructive, Even for An Experienced Baker
Reviewed in the United States on 14 September 2019
I could not resist tackling this cookbook as soon as it arrived. The color photos drew me in, but it was the information and recipes contained within that kept me there. Within 30 minutes, I was already baking my first pie, a Key Lime, since I had the ingredients on hand. And I kept going. The recipes are not only delicious, but also easy to follow. In true America's Test Kitchen manner, each recipe is prefaced by a "Why This Recipes Works" to provide the scientific explanation of why the instructions and ingredients are as they are.
As a seasoned baker who has been baking pies and tarts for decades, I had no idea that I'd learn so much from this cookbook. Yeah, I knew a lot of it already, but certainly not everything. Nowhere else have I seen such a good illustrative photo about different pie crust finishes and what each accomplishes. Or how to get that first slice of pie out without making a mess of it. And I knew that unsalted butter is best for pastry, but I didn't know why (lower water content.) I appreciate that ATK has tested brands of butter, graham crackers, flours, etc. so that I can gravitate toward a specific brand, if I can find it. I was shocked that the Gold Medal unbleached flour that I used to use is better for pastry crust than the King Arthur version I currently use because of its lower protein content. These kind of revelations can be found not only in the introductory section but also throughout the book.
Although The Perfect Pie includes recipes for the classics, its strength can be found in the less-often-homemade pies and tarts: rustic walnut tart, peach tarte tatin, Oregon blackberry pie, black-bottom pie, pumpkin praline pie, mocha cream pie, and nectarine and raspberry slab galette. I could go on and on. From cream pies to hand pies, this book has it all.
Since I already have my own favorite recipes for pies such as apple and pecan, I skipped those recipes to try out pies I've never made before. I made an exception to this by trying new pie crust recipes. The Perfect Pie contains five versions of all-butter crust, in separate recipes for single and double crusts, classic pie dough, vegan pie crust dough, gluten-free pie dough, tart dough, gluten-free tart dough, free-form tart dough (for galettes and such), graham cracker crust, coconut cookie crust, chocolate cookie crust (with two variations for mint chocolate and Nutter Butter), and slab pie dough. See what I mean about this book being comprehensive? I have a lot of work ahead of me just to try out all the crust recipes. And that doesn't count all the ways to crimp and decorate pies.
If you've never baked a pie or made a homemade crust before, don't worry. America's Test Kitchen will take you through it. If you've been baking pies for years, also don't worry because you will not only have scads of new recipes to work with but also tips for even better results.
What a great cookbook. I've been cooking pies for years and have a number of pie cookbooks. This is one of the best. The recipes are broken into different sections, including classic standard pies, regional favorites and more adventurous pies as well at tarts and galettes. In the Upping Your Game chapter there are some really inventive more advanced recipes.
The step by step instructions and illustrations are really helpful. I also appreciate the hints such as what can go wrong and how to avoid the problems.
I've already made two of the pies and I am really looking forward to cooking my way through the book.
They’re not kidding about this being the “ultimate guide” as this is a definitive tome on all things pie related. It has a wide range of recipes, from fancy to homey, my favorite being the regional specialty pies. Being from Virginia, they get bonus points for including peanut pie, which you usually wouldn’t find outside the Old Dominion. If you like pies, then this is the book for you.
Haven’t baked from the book yet, but I’m so excited to use it, I’ve been reading the recipes, this week, and they ALL SOUND SO AMAZING!!!!! Usually their recipes are Great, the way they they do there all butter pie crust is VERY DIFFERENT, than I’ve ever heard or done before, I will try it, before, it’s a big occasion, just to make sure, I’m very anxious to hear how other people like that one particular recipe, I use that one Very Much!!!! I hope I hear back about that!
Ok—not as great as I hoped. I have other ATK cook books and the Pie recipes in those books I think are better. I did use the new crust recipe they feature. Like usual, it works as expected. For apple pie, I combined two recipes, the Dutch Apple one and the standard to make a better apple pie. So, not a total loss.