Today is Pi Day! March 14th is always called pi day because the numeric form 3.14 is the value of the mathematical constant π. This day is doubly great for me because not only am I a food blogger who couldn’t wait to make a pie, I’m an elementary school teacher as well. What better way to teach kids about math then feed them a pie?
I didn’t make just any pie either. No I had to kill two birds with one stone in this way too. On my 33 while 33 list is a chess pie. Originally I had planned on making a lemon chess pie but with Blood Oranges in season I had to make a citrus substitution. I went with a Blood Orange Chess Pie.
What is a chess pie? It’s a custard pie with the addition of cornmeal. The cornmeal adds to the texture of the pie. I love the look of these pies because when they bake the top gets a beautiful brown lace pattern on the top. The pie itself looks like it has two layers. The top is the golden brown and the bottom half is a pinkish color from the blood oranges. The pie is sweet and full of blood orange flavor. The texture is similar to a traditional custard but a little firmer and thicker from the cornmeal.
To make the pie even prettier, I candied some blood orange slices and placed them on top. I would say you can substitute just about any citrus fruit in place of the oranges. If you do end up substituting lemons or limes I would increase the sugar. I didn’t use as much as most recipes call for because the blood oranges are sweeter then many citrus fruits.
Due to the sweetness in the pie, it is delicious served with a steaming hot cup of coffee. It’s also delicious with whipped cream on top. Anyway you serve it, it’s a beautiful, tasty pie and a great way to celebrate March 14th! Happy Pi Day!
- 1 refrigerated pie crust dough
- 1 c. sugar
- ½ t. salt
- 1 T. cornmeal
- 1 T. cornstarch
- 4 Blood oranges
- 4 T. butter, melted
- 5 eggs
- Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
- Place the pie crust in a 9 inch pie pan. Flute the edges if desired and place in the refrigerator to chill.
- In a large bowl combine the sugar, salt, cornmeal, and cornstarch. Mix and set aside.
- Zest one of the blood oranges and place the zest in a small bowl. Juice the oranges, measuring out ⅔ of a cup of juice.
- Add the orange zest and juice to the flour mixture and mix well. Add in the melted butter and eggs and whisk until combined.
- Remove the pie crust from the refrigerator and pour the orange filling into it. Place in the oven and bake for 45-50 minutes or until the top is golden brown. About halfway through baking add a pie crust shield to protect the crust from burning.
- Remove the pie from the oven and cool completely. Serve at room temperature.
You can see all the amazing pie recipes being shared today by clicking the images below.