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(The link at the bottom of this page will take you directly to Amazon, where you can download Ken's 85-page ebook)

                   So You Want to Make the Perfect Pie Crust?

     Or maybe you just want to make a pretty good one and get reasonably consistent results from one pie to the next. Heck - you may be thinking - I’d settle for anything that doesn’t stick to my rolling pin and the counter, self-destruct in mid-air, and make me look like a total klutz!

     Well here’s the deal: I can help. Really. I can teach you how to make a crust you’ll be proud of.

     How can I be so darn sure?

     For starters, I’ve been baking pies since I was a young man, and let’s just say the years since then can be measured in decades. So I’ve had a lot of practice.

     I soon discovered that I had a knack for pie making, and another for teaching others how to do it, which eventually led to writing three pie cookbooks, including one - PIE - chosen by Amazon as the best new cookbook of 2005. 

     When the internet came along I decided I could reach a lot more folks out there like you - good cooks who mistakenly think they were born with bad pie crust genes - so I started a website to share my love of pies and to teach others how to make them. It’s called The Pie Academy - - and when you put down this ebook for a moment I sincerely hope you’ll scurry on over there and sign up. (It’s free to join. And you'll find a sign up form below.)

     But enough about me. Let’s talk about you and why I know you can make a great pie crust - and by extension, great pies - even if you think you can’t.
                                         The “Easy as Pie” Myth

     Ever since you were a youngster you’ve heard countless people use the expression “easy as pie.” We all know what it means - something so simple or blatantly obvious that we could practically perform it in our sleep.

     Problem is, the person who came up with that catchy phrase only got it half right: making the pie is no big deal if you’re referring to the filling. It’s the crust that drives otherwise confident and capable cooks half crazy. There’s a lot that can go wrong, crust-wise. You probably know that or you wouldn’t be here.

     Indeed, every week at The Pie Academy a dozen or more frustrated pie makers drop off their pie baggage on my virtual doorstep. When I unpack these emails, I see comments such as this:

     “I can’t make a pie crust to save my life. I hate it because I want to make pies with my grandkids and I’m afraid to.”

     “The recipe always says to roll a circle of dough, but mine comes out shaped like Florida.”

     “I’m supposed to ‘cut in the fat’ - but I’m embarrassed to admit I don’t know what that means.”

     “My crust falls apart every time I roll it. I have to put the pieces back together in the pan like it’s a jigsaw puzzle.”

     “When I prebake my crust, it always shrinks and shrivels away from the sides of the pan. What am I doing wrong?”

     And so it goes. Maybe you can relate to some of these comments, or even all of them. If I had a dime for every time I got an email like this, I could retire tomorrow and move to Hawaii.

     Why am I telling you all of this? Because I want you to understand that “easy as pie” is fiction, and perhaps one that’s been making you feel like you’re a pie zero because you’ve tried to make a crust once or twice and failed miserably, or you simply can’t achieve consistent results.

              Are You Ready to Begin the Journey to Pie Hero?

     Here’s the fact of the matter: you can become a pie hero, and in fairly short order, but you need a good solid foundation to work from, tried-and-true techniques and guidance - like you’re going to get here - not breezy and feel-good slogans.

     You need someone who will take you by the hand, patiently walk you through the steps, point out potential pitfalls, and cheer you on when everything starts to click. Someone who understands how nice it will be when your friends and family start putting you on a pie pedestal and making special requests. Can you please bring your incredible Pennsylvania Dutch Sour Cream Apple Pie to the picnic this weekend?

     And someone who’ll level with you and tell you that you won’t achieve pie crust perfection overnight.

     I’ll do all that.

     But I’ll also be the first one to tell you that if you take the time to read this ebook through to the end, apply the lessons you learn here, and enjoy yourself - pie making should be fun for Pete’s sake! - then you’ll do great. Remember, the journey IS the destination.

     Making a good pie crust and pie is one of the most satisfying and delicious things you can do in the kitchen. Your success is going to give you a real sense of pride and accomplishment, not to mention make you the envy of all the other cooks in your circle.

     You’ve got this - I know you do. And I know you’re anxious to get started. But first a brief word about the emphasis of this book on making pie crust by hand. (I do, however, cover several food processor pie doughs later in this book.)

     It boils down to this: as I’ve made abundantly clear, most of the stumbling in pie making happens around the crust. Sure, there are tricks to making delicious fillings. But the filling is the (relatively) easy part. Many cooks never get that far because they’re so frustrated with their attempts to make a crust. Or they default to packaged crusts out of desperation.

     I hate to say it, but I’m afraid that this frustration stems from the fact that most of the cookbooks and recipe websites out there assume you already know your way around pie dough, that you mastered it years ago, so they skip right over the recipe. They dance over the specifics, drawing a quick sketch, when what you really need is a detailed picture.

     It’s like one of those quickie little “project ads” you see on HGTV, where someone builds a swing set from scratch in 30 seconds. Looks simple enough, but the reality is quite a bit more involved.

     I won’t play those games here. I lay it all out for you, starting with the ingredients, tools, the tips and techniques you’ll need for success. I spell out all the steps so you’re not left scratching your head and wondering what to do next. I don’t use pie baker lingo unless I explain what it means. I simply offer up advice like a good friend would, cheering you on to the finish line.

                             A Quick Word About the Hand Method

     Based on my experience teaching people how to make pies, most home bakers prefer to start with the basics and make their crust by hand rather than use a food processor or KitchenAid mixer. That’s why this ebook focuses largely on the hand method.

     I wholeheartedly agree with this “hand method first” approach. Whether you call it back-to-basics baking or old school baking, making pie dough by hand is the best way to get a feel for the entire crust making process. It’s also the best way to prevent over mixing that can occur when you use a machine. The hand method requires no expensive equipment you probably don’t already own, and the results are as good as any other method out there.

     When you’re ready to tackle the food processor method, you’ll find the recipes near the end of this ebook, and more recipes and tips over at The Pie Academy website. I’ve created an entire online video course that includes everything you need to know about both methods. It’s called The No-More-Tears Pie Pastry Course and if you're a visual learner, you like to see up close how something is done before you try, this course will prove to be invaluable to you as it has to the hundreds of bakers who've taken it. 

     Finally, you’ll be happy to know that if it’s entire recipes you want, fillings galore to keep you busy twelve months a year, you’ll find dozens of links throughout this ebook to pie recipes over at my website, And if those aren’t enough to keep you busy, there are hundreds more in my pie cookbooks.

(To download your copy of Pie Zero to Pie Hero at Amazon click on this link.

Hold On!

If you're not already a member of The Pie Academy, this is the place to sign up. You'll get 3 super helpful pie making videos just for signing up...and free membership in the web's most passionate pie community. 


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