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Pies that rise to the occasion

By Donna Mah | China Daily | Updated: 2011-01-12 15:10

Pies that rise to the occasion

Hong Kong

A piece of warm crusty pie on a chilly winter's day is ultimate comfort food, and for Hong Kong residents, the options are pretty wide when it comes to a nice slice.

To Kim Murch, an American living here, pies mean "holidays and family." Whenever there was a family gathering while she and her family were still living in New York, they would bake pie for dessert. Murch simply loves pies. In fact, she asked us over for Thanksgiving dinner one year where we had a Louisiana Honey Pecan Pie from Magnolia.

Magnolia is a private kitchen showcasing the award-winning Cajun and Creole cuisine of Lori Granito.

You have to order the pies in advance as you cannot just walk in and pick up one. Magnolia is tucked away on a quiet street in Sheung Wan and if you dine here, you eat what everyone else is eating, and that's whatever the chef has decided to serve that day.

The food is filling and delicious, so make sure you leave room for dessert. The pecan pie did not disappoint, being sweet and gooey, buttery and rich, and the perfect end to a wonderful evening.

Pies are so addictive that a couple of other people made it their business.

Shannon Ng, originally from Texas, has been making and selling pies for about a year now. Ng's Purpose Pies ( sells homemade pies for no profit. Once costs are covered, the remainder of the proceeds go to charities such as Society for Community Organization (SoCO).

Ng has categorized her pies from most to least sweet. One of her most popular pies is her grandma's Texas Pecan Pie. For her, pies remind her of her grandma and she has been making pies since she was about two feet high. To Ng, pies bring "comfort" and warm memories of childhood.

A new pie man in town is American, R.J. Asher, at Tai Tai Pie Pies. The special holiday menu features six sweet pies - three made with apple, one pecan, one cherry and one with pumpkin.

Asher loves baking, and pies in particular, so after some enthusiastic encouragement from his friends, he launched his business a few months ago. He says he has 15 different varieties of crust, not including the cookie crust. Now that's a lot of crust.

A slice of pie will not break the bank, and it's an easy way to get a taste of home, comfort and warmth fresh from the oven.

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