Midwest Living Review
There's a secret to making great pie crust. And Paula Haney knows it. To find out, you could spend a summer rolling dough like the Indianapolis native did to perfect her butter crust that's made Hoosier Mama Pie Company in Chicago's West Town a sweet success. Or you could just be satisfied with Paula's mighty fine pie at $4 a slice ($18-$25 whole pies). Paula and her team of young women wearing flower print headscarves bake 15 kinds of pie daily in the back kitchen of the tiny, two-table hole-in-the-wall storefront decorated with vintage pie tins from Paula's collection. A slice of any is a bite into American pie culture. Paula scours old cookbooks for recipes and uses only fresh seasonal ingredients for fillings. Apple and Hoosier sugar cream pies and savory chicken potpie are always scribbled on the blackboard menu dangling over the mint green, vintage bureau turned service counter. Southern specialties include gooey bourbon-pecan chess and Florida orange cream. Pie fillings mark the change of seasons. Paula's favorite: ruhbarb. She says, "I love rhubarb custard. It's not a pretty pie -- pretty homely. There really isn't anything you can do to make it look better. Besides, it would be wrong to tart it up, so to speak. So we give out free samples just to get people to try it." But the secret to Paula's tasty pie crust and fillings -- those stay safely tucked under her head scarf.