In our Basics series, we tackle the simple kitchen tasks; no job is so small that it doesn’t deserve to be done perfectly.
There’s nothing wrong with a simple crimped edge on a pie crust, but sometimes you want to go a little fancier. Enter the braided crust. Whether used to adorn single-crust pies or finish the edges of a lattice-top creation, a three-strand braid is an easy way to add a little embellishment to your pies—and it’s quite simple to do.
On a floured surface, start by rolling out a fist-sized ball of pie dough into a long, thin rectangle or oval. Using a knife, cut it into strips about ½ an inch thick. Loosely braid them together, and then cut off any excess dough at the end of the braids. Repeat as needed until you have enough braids to cover the circumference of the pie, overlapping and cutting off the ends if necessary. If your braid doesn’t stick easily, try brushing the edges with a little water or egg wash to act as a glue.
Check out our comprehensive pie guide for more tips, techniques, and recipes.