Tis the season for making some great pies!

Do you have a pie bird to vent your pies? Have you seen this singing bird-choir and wondered what that’s all about? Maybe you thought they were waiting for ‘mommy to drop them a worm’!

singing pie birds at Bahoukas in Maryland

Oh, don’t know what they are? Check this out:

pie birdpie ventpie whistlepie funnel, or pie chimney is a hollow ceramic device, originating in Europe, shaped like a funnel, chimney, or upstretched bird with open beak used for supporting or venting a pie.   … from Wikipedia

pie birds at Bahoukas Antiques in Havre de Grace, Maryland

A little more detail of these little pie birds. They stand a couple inches tall. Some folks like collecting them.

Pie funnels were used to prevent pie filling from boiling up and leaking through the crust by allowing steam to escape from inside the pie. They also supported the pastry crust in the center of the pie, so that it did not sag in the middle, and are occasionally known as “crustholders”. Older ovens had more problems with uniform heating, and the pie bird prevented boil-over in pie cooking.

The traditional inverted funnels, with arches on the bottom for steam to enter, were followed by ceramic birds; and from the 1940s they have been produced in a multitude of designs. This trend has been particularly noticeable in recent times, due to their increasing popularity as gifts and collectors’ items rather than simply utilitarian kitchen tools.    … from Wikipedia

Want a more recent reference to using pie birds? Click here for a video with MARTHA STEWART!