• Lauren Humphreys

Tiger King Pie

If you know who Joe Exotic is, you will understand the reference on this pie. If you have no idea why I would make a pie with a tiger wearing a crown on it, you need to turn on Netflix and watch “Tiger King.” This 7-episode series showcases eccentric Joe Exotic and his trainwreck of a zoo. It also brings to light startling issues about wild animal welfare in the United States. I do not want to be a spoiler or go into my personal opinions of the twists and turns of the show. All I am going to say is that it is absolutely brilliant, captivating, and worth your time to watch. Finish reading my blog post and then go watch it if you haven’t already!

So, back to this pie. We decided to have a scaled down Thanksgiving dinner yesterday. We really are making the most of this quarantine, so making delicious food is a wonderful place to start. Our turkey was thawed and prepped, and our sides were accounted for. However, we had nothing planned for dessert. Pie was the obvious choice seeing that we had a Thanksgiving theme going, and I was happy to bake! We had just finished watching “Tiger King” a couple nights ago, and I had the brilliant idea of making a tiger pie topper. I had never attempted anything this intricate before, and I would not recommend a tiger for a beginning pie maker. To be completely honest, there were a couple times I almost scrapped the whole project. However, I was patient and the pie turned out even better than expected! The filling is peach mango, in case you were wondering. It’s something entirely new, but the flavor is refreshing and perfect for spring. The orange color was also fitting for the tiger theme. Here is the pie before it was baked!

I would like to consider it “pie art” because it took approximately 3 hours from start to finish. I attached all pieces with a small amount of water. The recipe for my favorite pie crust is below. Prior to baking my pie, I brushed the crust with milk and sprinkled generously with sugar. This helps the crust brown nicely and adds shine. Plus, that extra sugar on top tastes delicious with the salty, flaky crust.

For additional information and step-by-step photos of how to make your own pie crust, please see my earlier blog post here.

I hope you decide to get creative the next time you bake a pie. If you do, please send me photos! If nothing else, please go watch "Tiger King"! In case you were wondering; yes, I do believe Carole Baskin murdered and fed her husband to a tiger.

Perfect Pie Crust

Recipe from Crisco. Yields 1 double crust.

2 cups all-purpose flour

¾ cup vegetable shortening

1 tsp salt

4-8 Tbsp ice-cold water

Combine flour and salt in large bowl. Cut in shortening with a pastry blender until flour mixture forms coarse, pea-size chunks. Stir in just enough water with fork or spatula until dough holds together and forms a ball. Divide dough in two, and flatten balls into 1/2 inch thick round disks. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour, if time allows.

Roll out disks into ~12 inch circles, about 1/8 inch thick. Carefully transfer dough into 9 inch pie plate, and trim sides, leaving ¾ inch overhang. Roll out remaining dough for top crust or second crust.

Follow your favorite recipe as instructed for filling and baking!

Here was the original head that I made. I was not pleased, so I remade it entirely with a new design.

The revised face was significantly improved!

Here was our lovely meal of turkey, skin-on mashed potatoes with gravy, and green bean casserole!

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