Today, I bring you part two in my pie crust embellishment series. This one is probably my personal favorite: roses! These look really impressive, but as was the case with leaf borders, they’re deceptively easy to make.
Seriously, all this takes is 5 circles cut out of a pie crust, a few drops of water, two cuts, and a little finessing. You can use the roses on their own, or you can add some leaves, vines, and/or different-sized roses to add an extra level of fanciness. I’ve also tried using colored sugar to make my roses red and my leaves green with some success.
Once again, I’ll urge you to use homemade pie crust for this, but if you’re pressed for time or just don’t feel like dealing with it, you can use store-bought pie crust just fine. You might need an extra roll if you’re making a full arrangement with leaves and vines like I did, but you might be able to get by with just one if you’re careful with your scraps.
You will need the following ingredients/supplies:
- ½ recipe sweet pie crust or 1 roll store-bought pie crust (you will need more for the bottom crust)
- heavy cream (optional)
- decorating or colored sugar (optional)
- circular cookie cutter or drinking glass
- sharp knife
- waxed or parchment paper
Line a cookie sheet or large plate with waxed paper and set it aside.
On a lightly-floured surface, roll out your pie crust until it’s about ⅛”-¼” thick.
Cut 5 circles of crust for each two roses you will need (I like to use 4 or 5 roses, so 10-15 circles). Dust off as much flour as possible. You can use any excess dough to make leaves and vines.
Dip your finger in some water and wet the top of one circle of dough.
Place another circle on top of the wet part and gently press it down, overlapping approximately ⅓ of the first circle.
Repeat the process with the remaining three dough circles until you have a chain 5 circles long.
Starting from the end closest to you, roll the dough circles up into a tube. When you reach the end of the roll, wet the end of the last dough circle before pressing it against the roll to seal it.
Using a sharp knife, slice off one end of the roll a little bit off-center. The piece you cut off should be a bit more than a third of the width of the entire roll.
Repeat on the other side of the roll. Stand your two pieces up on their cut ends and gently flare the petals.
Carefully transfer your roses to the lined cookie sheet and refrigerate them for at least half an hour before use.
Meanwhile, gather together any remaining crust scraps and mush them together. Roll the ball into a rope about as thick as a pencil. The rope will likely break as you go, but that’s ok. You can either pinch the pieces back together or use them separately for different branches of vine.
Refrigerate your vine pieces long enough to prevent them from stretching and tearing too much when you place them.
When you’re ready to assemble your pie, take everything out of the fridge. First, arrange your vines as you like.
If you are adding a leaf border, add it on now so that you can adjust your vine as needed.
Now place your roses. I like to put them at the ends of the vines, but really, it’ll look nice as long wherever you place them.
Finally, add in some extra leaves to fill out your design and cover more of the pie filling (here are a few different examples).
Put the pie back in the fridge while your oven preheats. This will help maintain the shapes of your crust pieces. If they’re too warm, they will melt and burn.
When your oven gets up to temperature, take the pie out again and brush the top crust with heavy cream. Adjust the pieces as needed, as they will inevitably shift during this part. Sprinkle with decorating sugar if you want a little sparkle and crunch (or used colored sugar if you want to try something different).
Bake the pie as directed, checking after 30 minutes to make sure the roses and leaves aren’t browning too quickly. If they are, cover the browning parts of the crust with foil for the remainder of the baking time.
That’s all there is to it. Now go forth and decorate some pies!
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