When the knowledgeable manager of our local Harry & David store, Lainey Smith, tells me about a product she’s excited about, I pay attention. First, Lainey has never steered me wrong and, second, the merchandise— whether it’s something to consume — or something that she thinks might be useful to those of who cook — is always fun. On a recent visit to the store, Lainey and I talked pies — pie crusts, pie fillings, pie books, pie dishes and the Tovolo Petite Pie Mold, which I had never used before. Thinking an assortment of petite pies might make a good dessert for a Fourth of July gathering, I decided to take two molds — one in green, with an apple motif and recipe for apple pie and the other in blue, with a star shape and recipe for making peach pie. So, home I came with the molds and within 30 minutes of rolling pastry, making fillings and crimping dough, I was removing fresh, perfectly baked mini pies from the oven. So impressive were the fruit pies that I also decided to try Tovolo’s recipe for savory pie. The savory pie, which I opted to make with some leftover chicken, was equally good — and very easy to make. Now, with these two beautiful versions of mini pies before me, one sweet, the other savory, I knew the menu plans for the Independence Day Holiday would have to include both — one for dessert — the other as a main course. You’ll find recipes for Petite Pies-Sweet here, in Part I of Food for the Fourth of July, with recipes for Petite Pies-Savory, appearing next week, in Part II. Look for Tovolo’s Petite Pie Mold, at the Harry & David Store (Tanger Outlet Center II-837-2121), or from on-line sources, such as Amazon.com (www.amazon.com). The Tovolo website also provides a list of vendors selling their products, via a zip code locator, at www.tovolo.com.
Sue Ade is a syndicated food writer with broad experience and interest in the culinary arts. She has worked and resided in the Lowcountry of South Carolina since 1985 and may be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.