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Cooking Through "The Baker's Man": Pear Pi Day Pie

Mystic Water is a whimsical little Southern town where magic floats on every breeze and is baked into every treat. Some townsfolk might complain about small towns, saying everybody knows your business, your college professor will call your daddy and tell him you skipped out on class, and boredom lingers around every corner because there’s nothing to do.

Many others will argue that Mystic Water is the perfect place to live, a place where anything is possible. One of the charming aspects of living in Mystic Water is that Anna O’Brien, the local baker, knows when it’s your birthday, and she’ll surprise you with your favorite treat.

One of Anna’s patrons has a birthday on March 14, which is also National Pi Day. The first five digits of pi are 3.1415, and the numbers go on and on and on... But in honor of Richard’s birthday, Anna baked him a fun Pear Pi Day Pie to celebrate two special days at once. Here’s to Richard, to mathematicians, and to pi pie lovers everywhere!

Pear Pi Day Pie

Serves: 8–12

Level of Difficulty: Pi carving, average difficulty; interior pie, easy


2 9-inch unbaked pie crusts (I use homemade, but you can use store bought)

⅓ c brown sugar

2 tbsp white sugar

2 tsp cinnamon

1 tsp salt

2 tbsp lemon juice

3 oz all purpose flour

6 Bosc pears, cored and sliced

egg wash (one whole egg + tbsp water)

How to Make

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.

  2. Make homemade pie dough or use two pre-made 9-inch piecrusts. Roll out one disc of pie dough into a 10–11-inch circle and place in the bottom of a 9-inch pie pan. Roll out second disc and place in the freezer for at least 10 minutes.

  3. While the dough rests in the freezer, mix together flour, sugars, cinnamon, and salt. Add lemon juice and pears and mix gently. Allow the pears time to sit for at least 5 minutes.

  4. Give pear mixture one more toss, and then add the mixture to the pie pan, careful to make an even layer.

  5. Remove second pie dough disc from the freezer and cut out the shape of the symbol for pi. Remove the pi symbol and set aside. Carefully place the top layer of crust, minus the missing pi piece, and crimp the edges all around the pie pan.

  6. Brush the pie top with egg wash. Brush the pi piece with egg wash and store in the refrigerator until the pie is baked.

  7. Place the pie in the oven and bake for 55–60 minutes, or until pie crust is golden brown and interior of pie is bubbly. If baking the pi symbol, bake it for 10 minutes max, or until it is golden brown.

  8. Share with people who understand pi, who have no clue what pi is used for, and for those who love pie!

The Baker’s Man can be purchased in paperback or for the Kindle from Amazon, Barnes and Noble, iBooks, and other major retailers.

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