We're no strangers to pie bakers making a mess in their ovens as the filling bubbles over and bakes and burns on the bottom of this appliance. It happens. There aren't any hard and fast set rules about how you handle this issue, but if you want to fully commit to this baking adventure without scrubbing your oven at the end of it, the easiest way to keep it clean is to place a parchment paper lined sheet pan under the pie tin before you bake it to catch all the drips and splatters. Lining the baking sheet also makes it easier to clean the sheet pan.
But the baking sheet can serve several other purposes beyond cleanliness that are equally important. First, it will make it easier for you to get in and out of the oven. This is particularly important if you are using one-time-use pans. And, if you are baking a pie with a particularly wet filling, you can preheat the baking sheet and it will not only catch the juices, it will help prevent a soggy bottom.
Bottom Crust Gets A Head Start
If you are making a pie with a fruity filling, you could be at risk of a soggy crust if you don't use a sheet pan. In short, placing the pie on a preheated sheet pan will allow the bottom of the pie to start cooking and get a much-needed head start. When the raw crust of the bottom of the crust starts to warm at a rate quicker than the rest of the pie, allowing that bottom crust to set before the liquids from the fruit filling can ruin your dessert.
The end result is a flaky crust and a clean oven. Who in their right pie-loving mind would give that up? Beyond fruit pies, using a sheet pan is also helpful when making a savory pie, like a classic chicken pot pie or a lovely Australian meat pie. All that gravy and meat juices may splatter onto the pan, but it also ensures the bottom crust doesn't turn into a mushy mess.
Read the original article on Tasting Table.