For times when a pie or a cake simply is not enough.

PIECAKEN is a whole pie baked inside of a cake. Any cake. Any pie. PIECAKEN has endless flavour combinations, which is why this web page exists. So when a pie or a cake simply is not enough, turn to this page for recipes, ideas, photos and events dedicated to PIECAKEN. It is a celebration all on its own, baked into one delicious dessert.

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

The Perfect Pie Crust

For any good PIECAKEN, you need a great pie crust. I have experimented with many pie crusts over the last five years (since I opened my pastry, cake and chocolate business) and this one is, by far, my favourite. I started with a recipe that I found on the inside of a box of lard, and then I made a few changes to prevent stickiness and found that I ended up with a flakier, crisper crust. Plus, although lard is fat, it does not contain hydrogenated vegetable oil like most shortening does, so you are saving on any added unhealthy ingredients.

Here is my recipe:

Recipe: Tasty, Crispy Pie Crust

You need:
  • 5.5 cups flour (unbleached, all-purpose)
  • 2 tsp salt
  • 1 lb lard
  • 1 egg
  • 1 tbsp vinegar (white)
  • 3/4 cup water

Prepare your pie plate by using a little of the lard to spread around the pan and on top of the sides (to prevent the crust edges from sticking).  Then dust with flour.  PIECAKEN Tip: cut a parchment paper the same size as your pie plate and line the pie plate with it, then slather more lard on the parchment and dust with flour. This will make it easier for you to extract your pie from its plate later.

1. Combine the flour and salt in a stand mixer bowl (or regular medium or large baking bowl). 

2. Chop lard into pieces (about 1-inch in size).

3. With paddle attachment on a stand mixer, mix the lard with the flour and salt until it is crumb-like in texture. If you do not have a stand mixer, use two knives or a whisk to chop up the lard and mix with the flour and salt until the mixture is crumb-like.

5. In a measuring cup (1 or 2 cup measure), beat the egg, then add vinegar and mix well. Add the water until you reach 3/4 of a cup and mix well again.

6.  Add slowly to lard/flour/salt mixture. Beat for about 10 to 30 seconds more until well combines.  Flour your hands and the dough as you extract it from the bowl and roll into a ball on the counter (it may be sticky, just dust well with flour until you can form a ball).

7. Divide into four balls of dough.

8. Roll one ball out into a circle about 1/8 inch thick. Place pie pan upside down on the dough and cut a circle about ¾ of an inch larger than the pie plate.  Take pie plate off and sprinkle a little flour on the pie crust and rub it around to spread across the whole surface. Fold the pie crust in half then in half again the opposite way. Pick up and place in pie plate container and unfold.

8. Press crust edges with a fork all around the pie.  Poke a few fork holes in the bottom of the crust also (if you don't have pie weights, otherwise, place those in the bottom of the pie to prevent bubbling).  
9. Egg wash: Mix an egg yolk with about two tablespoons of water and beat with fork.  Then brush on pie crust, particularly on the top sides.

10. Bake at 350 preheated oven for 10 minutes.

11. Add filling and bake pie as per recipe.  Cut a circle of raw pie crust dough for the top and press it into the sides (gently). Trim any excess.  Brush top with egg wash and bake as per your pie recipe.

If you are making a PIECAKEN with this recipe, there is no need to stress about making a beautiful looking pie crust - it will not matter if you have lovely folds or leaf cut-outs if it is going to be baked inside of a cake! It just needs to have the right structure and be well sealed, so that it clearly looks like a slice of pie inside of a cake when you slice into your PIECAKEN.

This pie crust can be used in any PIECAKEN recipe.  Including:



  1. Hi,
    I found your site through a link Kerry Beal had on FB. I've enjoyed reading at both your blogs!
    My perfect pie crust also contains a egg (which is unusual) so far I've only found 3 other people on the internet who include an egg in their recipe. I was wondering if you'd share how you came about using it in your pie dough?
    all my best,
    Wendy DeBord

  2. Is this for two pies or just one?

    1. You'll get at least two pies out of this recipe, plus 1more likely for a mini pie. You can freeze the extra dough for next time. Or make two pies now and freeze one whole for next time. Good luck with your pie! 😀

  3. Can anyone tell me how many grams/ounces are in the 5.5 cups of flour for this recipe? I weigh out flour instead of using volume measurements, and it seems like the standard 120 g/cup number gives a pie crust that is very wet. I have also seen some use 140 g/cup, so I am wondering what number is used here. Thanks for the recipe. It is quite good.