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cutter

What's the best knife for slicing a pie?

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when slicing a pie,is one knife better than the other for slicing?........... knifes being.... either serrated or smooth edge? ( fruit pies or pecan pies)

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With absolutely no disrespect towards you or your question, the day I go looking at knives and see one labeled "pie slicing knife" just may be the day I pack it all in and become a full-fledged hermit. :D The best knife for slicing a pie is the one closest to hand when you want a piece of pie. I've sliced pie with a  butter knife with no difficulties.

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It's kinda like wrestling a gorilla... you don't stop when you're tired, you stop when the gorilla is tired.

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I usually grab my 4-½" smooth-edge paring knife.

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 Is the pie on a flat surface? or is it still in a pie dish?

To me, you don't slice a pie. You cut out a wedge of pie.

 

dcarch


Edited by dcarch (log)

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Whatever I use, the first slice is a bust. If it's on a flat surface it is easier to slice, but taking a whole pie out of the pie dish is not something I would risk. Bye bye Miss American Pie. I hate those triangular pie slicers, especially if the pie has a top crust, I think they do more harm than good. I like to use a small serrated knife. Works fine, but only after that first slice is removed, usually in pieces.

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5 minutes ago, liuzhou said:

I just eat the whole pie with a spoon.

I prefer a fork:

1.  Place pie in the middle of the table

2.  Give everyone a fork (or spoon for @liuzhou)

3.  Eat pie!

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been googling this and seems like i see serrated and also a smooth edge knife being used to cut fruit pies. just was curious to know why would use one over the other.

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25 minutes ago, cutter said:

been googling this and seems like i see serrated and also a smooth edge knife being used to cut fruit pies. just was curious to know why would use one over the other.

 I do think you are overthinking this whole thing.   With sushi and brain surgery the choice of knife can really mean the difference between success and failure.  With pies it is just not critical. 

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Anna Nielsen aka "Anna N"

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"Cooking is about doing the best with what you have . . . and succeeding." John Thorne

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The only reason I see is if the pie contains nuts or some other firm element in an otherwise soft filling (ie, pecan pie). Then you might lean toward a sharp blade over a blunt one (ie, butter knife) in order to make cleaner slices. Otherwise there's not really any reason to choose. 

 

2 hours ago, cakewalk said:

Whatever I use, the first slice is a bust. If it's on a flat surface it is easier to slice, but taking a whole pie out of the pie dish is not something I would risk. Bye bye Miss American Pie. I hate those triangular pie slicers, especially if the pie has a top crust, I think they do more harm than good. I like to use a small serrated knife. Works fine, but only after that first slice is removed, usually in pieces.

 

I have an aluminum pie-slice lifter, designed specifically to rectify that "first-slice" conundrum. You put it in the pan before you assemble the pie, and bake with it in situ. When it's time to serve, you cut that slice first and lift it out (the handle rests underneath the edge of the crust, and protrudes slightly). 

 

It's not bulletproof -- I've had the slice stick to the lifter itself, on occasion -- but works pretty well, if/when I remember to use it. 

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"The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself."

Ursula K. Le Guin

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

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I cringe when I see someone use a chef's knife to slice a pie (as recently witnessed on the Food Network). All I can think about is the edge dulling with every stroke against the pie pan/casserole dish.

My mom received a metal spatula from her mother-in-law (my paternal grandmother) after she married my father. It looks like this spatula (but this version is no where near the same quality as my mom's original spatula...they don't make 'em like they used to). She uses the spatula every time she cooks in her cast iron skillet and it is the cutting tool she uses for 13x9 cakes, pies, fudge, lasagna's, etc.

First slice of pie goes to the chef/baker because it usually won't be pretty.

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Brian: Peter, those are Cheerios.”

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thats what i did with a cherry pie and several other pies..... used a smooth edge and had trouble and then tried with a serrated still problems,thats why i came here to get some advice.... 


Edited by cutter (log)

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Don't sweat it, Cutter. There'll be back-and-forth on a lot of threads, and what sometimes will appear to a new arrival as a flame war may actually turn out to be an established brand of banter between very good friends. Asking the question is always better than walking away still wondering. 

 

Ultimately, smooth vs. serrated is not likely to be your issue. Either a smooth knife or a serrated one can work, and in most cases a dull knife or even the side of a spatula works fine. If you're having trouble getting neat cuts with a cherry pie or any other pie, your best bet is the sharpest knife available, in any style. That being said, I'd stick to knives with small rather than large serrations, just because large serrations can catch and lift the crust or solid pieces of filling, instead of cutting them. 


"The only questions that really matter are the ones you ask yourself."

Ursula K. Le Guin

 

"Not knowing the scope of your own ignorance is part of the human condition...The first rule of the Dunning-Kruger club is you don’t know you’re a member of the Dunning-Kruger club.” - psychologist David Dunning

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I'll use whatever's handy, but since a pie is usually in a glass or metal pan, I won't use a sharp knife (like a chef or slicing knife). I don't ever use that kind of cutlery on plates or hard surfaces. Probably my favorite thing for pie is a palette knife ... not even a real knife. But super thin, and it can then be used as a spatula to serve the slice. They're useful for a million other things; I always keep a straight one and an offset one around. And they cost around $5

 

 

.Ateco-1387-Offset-Icing-Spatula-3631_xlarge.jpg.a7b35638f8f9a5a11b9c38a2a415015b.jpg

 

 

image by Ateco USA 

 

 


Edited by paulraphael asked by mods (log)
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Notes from the underbelly

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Actually, I think there are knives which may perform better in cutting pies:

 

1. I have a Teflon coated knife. The next time I have a pie and I remember, I may give that a try.

 

2. An electric knife may give a better cut if the pie has a top crust.

 

3. I have a special very thin very pointy tipped knife. I think using that first to perforate the crust then cut the wedge, the end result may be better. If only I have a pie now-----

dcarch

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@dcarch  visions of you with an electric knife slicing a pie brings images of Alton Brown in a pie episode to mind 

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