Hi Caroline,I had mentioned in the fall that I would send you a review of your small pie machine and crimper. As I mentioned previously, I am a volunteer baker for a fairly large community Food Bank here in my city. Being retired, I have time to bake for this charity about two full days per week. I recall that I came across your pie making machines purely by accident - on a computer search. It occurred to me that I could use your machines to produce large quantities of these mini pies for the clients of our Food Bank. In the fall of 2016, I began to produce the cooked pie filling - using a large, cast iron Dutch oven. Over a period of weeks, I made enough apple pie filling to produce at least 1,100 mini apple pies. This I froze immediately. As well, I bought 110 lbs. of frozen blueberries that I am hoping will produce almost another 200 mini pies. All of this baking I do in my home and then later deliver it all in a frozen state to our Food Bank. They have a walk-in freezer, so all of my baked products are kept frozen right up to the time they are distributed to the clients. My experience with this small pie making machine has been positive and I am now comfortable in using it, plus the "gear-style" crimper. My pies are looking great when delivered to my friends at the Food Bank. I bag each pie in a separate poly, 3 lb. bag and enclose a "business card" inside each bag - to mostly provide baking instructions. My filling is cooked in advance by myself, but the baking of the pies is actually done by the clients of this charity - in their own homes. Many times, the people who patronize a Food Bank are not well off financially. Because of this, they rarely get to eat "fun foods" like homemade baked goods. Often they are very pleased to find something that has been homemade in their box of food. I consider these pies to also be "fun foods", and they are VERY well received by the Food Bank's clients. There are hundreds of Food Banks all across North America, but not many seem able to supply homemade baked goods to those they assist. It might be that other Food Banks would want to try using a set of these pie making machines as a way to expand the type of food that they offer. The machines do allow you to produce these pies faster than would be possible in someone's home kitchen. I truly am happy to be able to help some of those who need help with their "Daily Bread". I could have chosen the larger pie makers that produce the standard, nine inch in diameter pies. However, because of the higher cost to produce these larger pies, I decided to stick with the five inch in diameter versions. That's enough for one person to consume. Yes, money is an issue when it comes to producing these pies in quantity for a charity. I personally pay for all of the costs involved in making these items, so the smaller pies make more sense for my situation. Hopefully, some of those who read this review, may be encouraged to support their own Food Bank, Community Kitchen, or Emergency Shelter - by becoming their "official pie-man".
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