Pies get star treatment in 'Labor Day'

Red Prince apple tart. (Supplied)

Red Prince apple tart. (Supplied)

Rita DeMontis, Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 11:32 AM ET

Gorgeous Kate Winslet along with ruggedly handsome Josh Brolin are going to do for pie-making what a pottery wheel did for the movie Ghost in Paramount Picture's upcoming Labor Day movie.

The two actors tear up the scenery in one of the movie's most crucial moments when Brolin teaches Winslet how to...make a pie.

In fact, word is this salient scene is key to movie's core message. Winslet received a Golden Globe nomination for her role in this juicy flick.

And we guarantee those who view this film when it comes out later this month will leave the movie theatres with uplifted spirits — and drooling for a slice of pie. Apple at that, given findings in a recent independent survey commissioned by the American Pie Council, (whose National Pie Day holiday, coming up January 23), is being sponsored by Labor Day.

The survey, conducted by Nielsen asked respondents about their pie-eating habits and their lifetime relationship with the dessert, revealing pie is the preferred dessert — with apple taking the top votes as the most popular pie.

According to the American Pie Council, (the famous U.S.-based organization committed to preserving America's pie heritage) recipes and pie-making skills hold a dear place in a family’s heritage, a theme that Labor Day seizes upon with subtle effectiveness.

Truthfully, you don't need a specific day to enjoy a slice of pie. And, although National Pie Day is an America initiative, we're pretty sure we're big fans of pies here in Canada. That said, we can certainly join our neighbours south of border in this sweet celebration. As for the pie itself, there are those who say it's all about the crust and those who only dig into the filling. What with the blustery weather and the never-ending cold — bake yourself a pie and have yourself a slice of nice in celebration of National Pie Day!

Check out Piecouncil.org for details on favourite recipes, stories and more.

WHO MAKES BETTER PIES

James Brolin's muscle ripple with smoldering sensuality as he shows Kate Winslet how to make a good pie crust. An old friend of mine was the pie maker in his family — a gift he passed on to his three sons. Turns out all the pastry makers he grew up with were men — "perhaps the upper body strength helps roll out the lightest dough!" he said with a laugh.

Easy As Pie Red Prince Apple Tart

Apple pie all decked out! This easy to create tart celebrates one of the happiest fruits in the bounty, and the Canadian Red Prince is a beautiful, big-flavoured winter apple to enjoy. Recipe courtesy of Redprinceapple.ca.

Ingredients:

  • 8 oz. (250g) frozen puff pastry [thawed according to package directions]
  • 2 large Red Prince Apples, skin on, halved, cored and thinly sliced, approx. 2 cups/500ml
  • 1 Tbsp. (15ml) fresh lemon juice
  • 1 Tbsp. (15ml) ground cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp. (30ml) maple sugar (if not available use brown sugar)
  • 2 Tbsp. (30ml) sweet unsalted butter, cut into small chunks

Directions:

Preheat oven to 400F (200C). Roll out entire package of pastry (maintaining rectangular shape) on a floured surface.

Place pastry in a rectangular tart pan, pressing edges in place and trimming excess pastry from top. Place pan with pastry in fridge to chill.

Wash, core and slice apples into thin half moon shaped pieces and place in a large mixing bowl. In another bowl combine, cinnamon lemon juiced and brown sugar. Stir until sugar is dissolved. Pour over apple slices and toss to coat. Let stand for 10 minutes.

Remove pastry from fridge and fill tart pan with apples slices over lapping slightly to create a fan pattern. Dot apples with cubes of cold butter evenly across top of apples. Bake in oven for 30 minutes or until pastry is puffed and golden brown.

Makes 8-10 servings

TIP: Serve with rum and raisin ice cream or for the calorie conscious vanilla frozen yogurt.

TIP: Red Prince apples are ideal for traditional pie fillings, too.


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