Upper crust! Become a pie-witness expert this Thanksgiving

Upper crust! Become a pie-witness expert this Thanksgiving
Photo by Stefano Giovannini

Time to get baking, Brooklyn.

Thanksgiving is just around the corner, which means you can’t throw a turkey leg in the borough without hitting an opportunity to stuff your pie-hole — with pie! And according to the organizer of one such event, the tasty pastries are easier to make than people think.

“Pie is one of the things that blows people away when they realize how simple it is,” said Lili Dagan, education manager at Brooklyn Kitchen, a Williamsburg cooking store that is hosting a pie-making class on Nov. 18. “Basically all you need is your filling and water, flour, and butter.”

The class will empower attendees to make their holiday pies from scratch this year, offering step-by-step instruction from the crust to the filling, and the tools to blow their grandma’s family recipe out of the water, said Dagan.

Dagan was reticent to reveal the specific secrets that pie scholars will pick up at the class, but she was willing impart what she said is the key to a good pie: quality ingredients.

“When you’re making something with so few ingredients, you really want to get the best ingredients you can,” she said.

For those who want the secret to a good pie as well as some great factoids to throw at their know-it-all cousin come Thanksgiving, the mad scientists behind booze-fueled food lecture series Masters of Social Gastronomy may be just the thing. The Masters will hold a lecture on Nov. 19 at Littlefield in Gowanus that will explore the ins and outs of apple pies, as well as the long history of America’s greatest invention, the pumpkin pie.

“Pumpkin pie is very American, and has deep roots to the country’s culinary history,” said Sarah Lohman, a “historic gastronomist” and co-founder of Masters of Social Gastronomy.

The free talk will also give the historically and culinarily curious a chance to sample a pie recipe from pre-Revolutionary War days, as well as a scientific comparison of the many kinds of apples that can be used to fill a pie.

Lohman agreed with Dagan on the ease of baking a pie, but said anyone intimidated by the prospect of making a crust from scratch is off the hook.

“When in doubt, pie crust from the freezer section is pretty good,” Lohman said. “You can even make a good pie with a bad crust. It’s all about the filling.”

Masters of Social Gastronomy presents “All-American Pies” at Littlefield [622 Degraw St. between Fourth and Third avenues in Gowanus, (877) 435–9849, www.omgms‌g.com]. Nov. 19 at 8 pm. Free.

Hands-on Pie: Pumpkin Fillings class at the Brooklyn Kitchen [100 Frost St. between Manhattan and Meeker avenues in Williamsburg, (718) 389–2982, www.thebr‌ookly‌nkitc‌hen.com.] Nov. 18 at 6:30 pm. $65.

Reach reporter Noah Hurowitz at nhuro‌witz@‌cnglo‌cal.com or by calling (718) 260–4505. Follow him on Twitter @noahhurowitz