PAST&Y, PIES AND TAUTS.
Another good way to ascertain when the oven is heated to the proper degree for puff paste : put a small piece of the paste in pre- vious to baking the whole, and then the heat can thus be judged of.
Pie crust can be kept a week, and the last be better than the first, if put in a tightly covered dish and set in the ice chest in summer and in a cool place in winter, and thus you can make a fresh pie every day with little trouble.
In baking custard, pumpkin or squash pies, it is well, in order that the mixture may not be absorbed by the paste, to first partly bake the paste before adding it, and when stewed fruit is used the filling should be perfectly cool when put in, or it will make the bottom crust sodden.
HOW TO MAKE A PIE.
AFTER making the crust, take a portion of it, roll it out and fit it to a buttered pie-plate by cutting it off evenly around the edge ; gather up the scraps left from cutting and make into another sheet for the top crust ; roll it a little thinner than the under crust ; lap one-half over the other and cut three or four slits about a quarter of an inch from the folded edge (this prevents the steam from escaping through the rim of the pie, and causing the juices to run out from the edges). Now fill your pie-plate with your prepared filling, wet the top edge of the rim, lay the upper crust across the centre of the pie, turn back the half that is lapped over, seal the two edges together by slightly pressing down with your thumb, then notch evenly and regularly with a three-tined fork, dipping occasionally in flour to prevent sticking. Bake in a rather quick oven a light brown, and until the filling boils up through the slits in the upper crust.
To prevent the juice soaking through into the crust, making it soggy, wet the under crust with the white of an egg, just before you put in the pie mixture. If the top of the pie is brushed over with the egg, it gives it a beautiful glaze.
FOR ICING PASTRY.
To ICE pastry, which is the usual method adopted for fruit tarts and sweet dishes of pastry, put the white of an egg on a plate and with the blade of a knife beat it to a stiff froth. When the pastry is nearly baked, brush it over with this and sift over some pounded sugar ; put it back into the oven to set the glaze and in a few minutes