Pie Time

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Story by Dave Eckert

With the Holidays right around the corner, it’s time to celebrate and give thanks. Thanksgiving has always been one of my favorite dining days of the year. I love the whole meal, but maybe most of all the wonderful pumpkin pie my wife makes from her mother’s recipe. My wife would never think of it, but there are some terrific options for those of us unable, ill-equipped, or just unwilling, to dive into the homemade pie arena.

Photo courtesy of Easy as Pie

Ann Lewis is approaching her four-year anniversary of her business, Easy as Pie. Lewis told me she baked her first pie in a home economics class in high school, and she’s been hooked ever since. “I currently operate a cottage bakery out of my midtown condo. I loved the name because the expression “easy as pie” is such a farce! Pie can be notoriously finicky to make, especially when mastering the dough,” Lewis said.

Lewis says a good pie should inspire feelings of nostalgia, reminding you of something you ate as a child. As for this season, Lewis says look for her options on Instagram and Facebook. People can also email me to place those orders easyaspiekc@gmail.com.

Photo courtesy of Broadmoor Bistro

Justin Hoffman bakes the pies for the Broadmoor Bistro in the Shawnee Mission School District. As a student he won the Apple Pie Scholarship for The Culinary Institute of America. “Later that year, I decided to sell my Butterscotch Praline Streusel Apple Pie for Thanksgiving. I sold about 15 pies. For Christmas, I sold 75 pies that I baked in four different kitchens!” Hoffman smiled. Hoffman’s pie binging let to Broadmoor’s Annual Pie Sale, which has now become the Everything But The Turkey Sale. You can get in on the action by visiting everythingbuttheturkey.com.

Photo courtesy of Ashleigh’s Bake Shop

Ashleigh Luna of Ashleigh’s Bake Shop in Westport is another childhood baker turned seasoned professional. “Growing up, I always baked the pies for our Thanksgivings at home. One summer, my dad and I started baking pies and ended up testing recipes for what turned into the pies we now sell at Ashleigh’s Bake Shop. We opened our shop inside Pryde’s Kitchen store in September 2015. We’re going into our sixth year, and I still have my father baking beside me,” Luna told me. And she’s got some special pies up her sleeve for Thanksgiving and Christmas. For information, visit Ashliegh’s website at ashleighsbakeshop.com.

Sisters Jan Knobel and Elaine VanBuskirk of The Upper Crust bakery also peddled their pies out of Pryde’s before opening their bakery in downtown Overland Park. “My sister and I grew up in a family of fabulous pie bakers-our mother and grandmother. But it wasn’t until we were grown that we asked our mother to teach us her magic pie making techniques,” Knobel recalled.

Knobel says a good pie starts with good ingredients, and that includes made from scratch fillings and pie pastry. “Our Thanksgiving Pie Menu will consist of four of our seasonal favorites: Apple, Cherry, Pumpkin, and Pecan.” Orders may be placed beginning November 1st on their website at uppercrustpiebakery.com.

Intro and Photo courtesy of Pie Goddess

How about some pie wisdom from the Pie Goddess, Kristin Brumm? “I’ve always loved baking, but a few years back I started playing around with different pie crust designs. I posted the photos on Instagram. People started reaching out asking if I would be willing to sell my pies. Last October, I decided to open a business so I could do just that. Pie Goddess was my Instagram handle, so that became the name of the business,” Brumm shared.

For the holidays, Brumm says she’ll have special offerings for both Thanksgiving and Christmas. Her goods sell out quickly, so if you’re interested, sign up for emails on her website piegoddess.com 

Photo courtesy of Pie Time

Finally, Christine Crouch, owner of Pie Time, which you will find just off the square in downtown Liberty. “After working as an Air Traffic Controller and in the education field, I found an opportunity to start my own business doing something I’m passionate about. I decided to open a pie shop because I have always enjoyed baking and cooking,” Crouch told me.

This year, Pie Time is offering 10 different pies as well as a yummy quiche. You can drop by their shop or email your order to pietimeliberty@gmail.com.

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