Pies are a dessert that can be enjoyed all year round. In the winter, the cold weather outside is the perfect excuse to stay in your cozy kitchen and do a little baking, while in the summertime you can take advantage of all the perfect berries and stone fruits available at farmers markets to make some really amazing pies. A Year of Pies: A Seasonal Tour of Home Baked Pies is a cookbook that celebrates pies year-round. The book includes 60 pie recipes and is divided up according to the season, so you have a great reference of flavors and fruits that are in-season during each part of the year or just simply make a great dessert in the spring, summer, winter or fall.
As any good pie cookbook would do, this one starts off with a discussion of the ingredients needed to make a great pie and the techniques you need to make a great pie crust. The format is easy to follow along with and easy to reference, both for novice and more experienced bakers. The pie dough tips are great and the six pie crust recipes – two traditional and four crumb/shortbread – are all you need for the wide range of fillings included in the rest of the book. You’re given a short list of what fruits and veggies are in season on the title page of each chapter, so when the recipes start out with Winter, you know that things like citrus and mushrooms will find their way into the recipes there. The recipes are clearly written and easy to follow along with, and there are plenty of tips throughout the book that offer hints or substitutions on ingredients and variations for flavor twists on the pies.
The cookbook includes both sweet and savory pies, and while there are definitely more sweet pies, it’s great to see the variety that savory pies bring to the table. The savory side of things includes both meaty pies, such as Chicken Pot Pie and veggie pies, such as a Roasted Corn and Pepper Pie in the summer section. Most of the recipes are accompanied by photos that will get your mouth watering even before the name of the pie does, showing juicy fillings and flaky crusts. From fruit to nuts, and chocolate to whipped cream, you’ll find a perfect pie for every occasion in here and all the details you need to get it to turn out looking picture-perfect in your home kitchen.