Yes, that is a 4# tub of lard. But it’s really good lard, which I had shipped from Prairie Pride Farms in Minnesota; they are one of the few sources of lard with no trans-fats. Lard makes the BEST pie crust, but sadly, all lard you buy in the store now is shelf-stable: the pig fat–which normally would need to be kept cold to preserve it–is instead pumped up with hydrogen to keep it “fresh” and also full of trans-fats.
It’s bad enough to eat saturated fat, but can you imagine eating saturated fat that is also artificially hydrogenated? Yuck.
Plus, that kind of lard comes from industrial pigs. Pigs full of chemicals; and chemicals tend to be stored in animal fat.
Now that it’s finally gotten cool, and the holidays are around the corner, I thought I’d brush up on my pie skills. Above, my pie crusts; the 2 on the right are going to be the top-crusts.
I must say, the crust rolled out like a dream and it was really easy to lift off the counter and deposit in the pie tin: nothing broke.
I chopped up 10 average-sized organic granny smith apples.
I then tossed the apples with flour, cornstarch, sugar, lemon juice and just a pinch of pumpkin pie spice. I’m not a big fan of lots of spice in my apple pie.
Above, the assembled pie; an egg wash was used to brush the top and help squish down the sides. I didn’t pre-cook the pie filling, something my mom and dad were amazed at when they tasted my pie (they loved it). It’s such a gamble, making fresh fruit pie, unless you really know your fruit and how it cooks down.
I was feeling adventurous, though, knowing what a risk it is! But the pay-off, if it turned out….yum.
Below, the finished pies. When I cut into them, the filling was a little bit runny….but not much.
If you want great pie crust, you need great lard; and that, gentle readers, cannot be found in the grocery store–even the local Mexican grocery stores here in Tucson–anymore.