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BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?

Desert Dancer 16 Apr 13 - 07:00 PM
Desert Dancer 16 Apr 13 - 07:11 PM
Rapparee 16 Apr 13 - 10:31 PM
Desert Dancer 16 Apr 13 - 10:40 PM
GUEST,Frank 17 Apr 13 - 12:28 AM
GUEST,CS 17 Apr 13 - 03:40 AM
GUEST,Eliza 17 Apr 13 - 04:09 AM
Rapparee 17 Apr 13 - 09:47 AM
Desert Dancer 17 Apr 13 - 12:58 PM
GUEST,Eliza 17 Apr 13 - 02:18 PM
Mo the caller 17 Apr 13 - 02:40 PM
Desert Dancer 17 Apr 13 - 04:34 PM
Desert Dancer 17 Apr 13 - 06:23 PM
Bat Goddess 17 Apr 13 - 06:45 PM
GUEST,Eliza 18 Apr 13 - 06:46 AM
Megan L 18 Apr 13 - 12:52 PM
GUEST,Mike 24 Aug 14 - 12:07 PM
open mike 24 Aug 14 - 02:55 PM
GUEST,.gargoyle 24 Aug 14 - 05:09 PM
GUEST 24 Aug 14 - 06:30 PM
Musket 25 Aug 14 - 03:16 AM
GUEST,Mike 25 Aug 14 - 05:34 AM
Q (Frank Staplin) 25 Aug 14 - 02:07 PM
dick greenhaus 25 Aug 14 - 04:15 PM

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Subject: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 07:00 PM

The Edible Geography blog has an entry featuring scrimshaw pastry tools on exhibit at the New Bedford Whaling Museum. She calls these "pie crimpers" and theorizes on the diversity:
"The exhibit attributes this functional extravagance to many hours of boredom at sea, but also to the American diet in the nineteenth century. A typical New England meal of the era would involve not just pie, but pies, in both savoury and sweet form. Armed with a crimping multi-tool, a lucky whaler's spouse or mother need never fear a moment's confusion differentiating between her cherry and chicken pies."

If I google on "pie (or pastry) crimper" some of these and their modern versions come up. But, I think that these are (mostly) better labelled as "pastry cutters". In the pie/pastry context, I defined "crimp" as pressing together layers of dough to seal them together, usually with some decorative flourish.

If you want to make a lattice-top pie, you can use these cutting wheels like a pizza cutter to make the strips of dough -- with pretty zig-zag edges. Here is an edge-on view that shows the cutting edge more clearly.

You can also make fancy edges on cookies/biscuits like this, or cut apart filled dough (e.g. ravioli) like this. (You seal the layers together by wetting and pressing, though. The tool just cuts.)

In all the how-tos that I've seen (in books or online), I've never seen one of these wheeled tools used for pressing layers of dough together to seal them.

In the Google search, I do find this and this type of wheeled-tool, which does fit my idea of a tool that can be used to press together layers of dough to seal the edged of a closed pie, or decorate the edge of a single-crust pie. Here's a lovely and detailed Victorian ad: the crimping wheel also cuts (with a straight edge) simultaneously -- but the little zig-zag cutting wheel is used for some other purpose.

Another type of result for "pastry crimping tool" is a pair of small, toothed tongs that can be used to pinch dough together for a decorative effect. Also these and these.

I do see crimping as a function of the non-wheel portion of this scrimshaw and this brass and this multi-tool: used to pinch dough against fingers or a pan, they would do the trick in a decorative way.

The definition of "crimp" is "compress (something) into small folds or ridges" (Oxford American English). Are people expanding that definition to any zig-zag, even if it's cut, rather than compressed?

Or is it just that there are a lot of people who have never actually used these tools making labels for them? :-)

~ Becky in Long Beach
(is it obvious that I have time on my hands at the moment? The scrimshaw is lovely.)


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 07:11 PM

(And despite my vocabulary quibbles with the that one post, I think the Edible Geography blog is wonderful. Great work, and single-author: written by Nicola Twilley, a freelance writer currently based in New York City.)

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Rapparee
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 10:31 PM

Well, my grandma always crimped the pie edges with her false teeth. Naturally she rinsed them off first!


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 16 Apr 13 - 10:40 PM

I'll bet that made a lovely pattern, Rap! Presumably she used the molar end for the crimping effect, rather than the incisors. Unless it was pressing the dough between the front of the incisors and her fingers?

For myself, I just use my fingers, generally.

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,Frank
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 12:28 AM

You don't need to know how I put the holes in the donuts!


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,CS
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 03:40 AM

They look like pastry cutters to me (I have a wooden one with a ziggy zaggy wheel, just like those in the picture), but then again, I've never seen a so-called pastry 'crimper' - I can't imagine any of those tools being very effective for crimping pies either - I use a fork to crimp pie edges and fingers to crimp pasty edges.


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 04:09 AM

I don't know why but I bought a set of daft plastic 'pasty crimpers' in a Kleeneezee (ghastly word!) catalogue. They were hinged things in the shape of a Cornish pasty. You put the pastry in with the thing open, pop meat etc on the top, then close it so it would be crimped shut. Useless. Why didn't I stick to using my finger-and-thumb as my mother and grandmother always did? 'Cos, like these crimpers, I'm daft.
GuestFrank: LOL! LOL!


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Rapparee
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 09:47 AM

Frank: do you do that before or after the dough is put into the boiling oil?


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 12:58 PM

Eliza, one of these? I sort of excluded those from my discussion, though they certainly fit the bill, too. Searching on "pasty crimper" gives a lot of the same pastry cutter results as the other searches... but it does get me lots of pictures of lovely hand-crimped pasties... which reminds me that there's a shop near me in southern California that I've driven by several times and maybe should visit for lunch today it's called "The Pasty Kitchen". (Hubby is gluten-free now, which has put a crimp in my pastry-pasty-pie-eating opportunities.) ;-)

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 02:18 PM

Exactly like those Desert Dancer! The very ones! (Don't they look like some rather weird false teeth?) I do find pasties an excellent way to use up bits and pieces of meat/veg. I make quite nice pastry, and we enjoy a pasty now and then. By the way, the Cornish say you should always crimp to the side and not on the top. I find this tricky. How about you?


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Mo the caller
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 02:40 PM

Rap and Frank, you've been spending too long reading seaside postcards.




And you got there before me!


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 04:34 PM

Eliza, I have to admit that my only encounter with authentic Cornish pasties was in Cornwall in 1968, caravanning that summer with my parents. (The Nankivells originate in that part of the world.) Mom bought some without knowing what she was getting and served them for dessert assuming that they were fruit turnovers. Whoops! Looking at what Mr. Google has to offer, I don't think it'd bother me where the seam was, though I see the official specs are described here. :-)

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Desert Dancer
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 06:23 PM

Update: the local pasties are not up to Cornish specs (in crimping and ingredients), but still darn tasty.

Mudcat on Facebook

~ Becky in Long Beach


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Bat Goddess
Date: 17 Apr 13 - 06:45 PM

I grew up with the Upper Michigan version of pasties (my parents lived there when I was born but moved back to Wisconsin shortly thereafter, bringing with them a taste for pasties)...brought there by Cornish miners.

I crimp pies with my fingers. Pasties (which I really need to start making again -- "dinner, well in hand") I sometimes used a fork and sometimes my hands, like a pie.

Linn


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 18 Apr 13 - 06:46 AM

There's a fast-food outlet here in UK called West Cornwall Pasty Company. Their outlets are all painted black (a la Cornish flag) and with twee pics of pirates etc everywhere. Their 'pasties' are dire, too greasy, flaky rather than shortcrust pastry and the insides gristly and not at all authentic. (I used to have holidays in St Ives in the fifties and the true Cornish pasties were to die for.) But the West Cornwall ones are crimped to the side. One out of ten for authenticity then! By the way, my mother used to do all sorts of amazing things with her fingers (crimping pastry I mean!) making lovely patterns and never resorting to crimpers of any kind. She used her hands/fingers for nearly all baking, and never even had scales to weigh. Cake-mixing was literally hands-on. All she had as I remember was a set of scone cutters.


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Megan L
Date: 18 Apr 13 - 12:52 PM

Although many would have been made as love tokens the ones that looed like spiky spurs could have been used instead of a fork for docking pastry.


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,Mike
Date: 24 Aug 14 - 12:07 PM

In the 18th century they were called paste jaggers which has developed into the modern term pastry jigger. Jagger is perhaps more appropriate because the wheel cuts a jagged edge but pastry jigger is the more usual modern term.s


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: open mike
Date: 24 Aug 14 - 02:55 PM

I used to ahve a tool that would cut on one side and was hinged to crimp dough together for ravioli, or turnover, or pasties or piroshki
like the first two items pictured here...here are a couple devices that cut and crimp dough


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,.gargoyle
Date: 24 Aug 14 - 05:09 PM

INTERESTING...Never had a clue.

THANK YOU !!!


Sincerely,
Gargoyle

Run through the automatic dishwasher once....and the wooden handle split.


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST
Date: 24 Aug 14 - 06:30 PM

You should see Frank when he's making bagels...


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Musket
Date: 25 Aug 14 - 03:16 AM

Whilst in most normal households, granny's false teeth provided the perfect pitch and indent.


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: GUEST,Mike
Date: 25 Aug 14 - 05:34 AM

If you want to see a few hundred pastry jiggers, have a look at my website www.michaelfinlay.com


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 25 Aug 14 - 02:07 PM

Always used the fingers in my family for pies, empanadas and turnovers.

If making pierogi by the gross, however, a gadget would be handy.


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Subject: RE: BS: pie crimpers or pastry cutters?
From: dick greenhaus
Date: 25 Aug 14 - 04:15 PM

To Quote from the fine cowboy song "Boomer Johnson"....
With the front sight of his six-gun he would carve them pie-lids slick
Then he'd crimp them with the barrel to make sure that they would stick.


Mult-purposing.


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