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Wickham's Fruit Farm pies ready for the Thanksgiving table. (Credit: Krysten Massa)

There are a lot of reasons people love visiting the North Fork around Thanksgiving, but perhaps chief among them is the homemade pie sold at local farm stands.

This weekend, Wickham’s Fruit Farm farm stand manager Laurie McBride invited us in to see how they prepare for the holidays, making dozens of apple and pumpkin pies. 

“These pie recipes [this year] are what I grew up with and my family recipes, so it kind of has my flair on top of the traditional Wickham [flavor]” she said.

Growing up in a North Fork farm family, Ms. McBride always used farm-fresh products in her baking. She said that while Wickham’s only gets about 50 orders for Thanksgiving, a small number compared to some other larger scale producers, they also sell the produce you’d need to make your own pies.

“You can stop here at Wickham’s, we’ve got the apples if you want to make a pie yourself, we have pies if you are not a baker, we have other baked goods, we have your cider,” she said.

Ms. McBride tries to use as few ingredients as she can in her pies. The apple pies are made with mutsu apples, which have a naturally sweet taste to them, and she adds only a little flour and cinnamon.

The pumpkin pies are made with Long Island cheese pumpkins. Ms. McBride said this is where many people who try to make pumpkin pies at home go wrong, because they don’t use the right kind of pumpkin.

Ms. McBride said she tries to use the “seconds” of the produce, meaning something a customer would not necessarily buy, because it is bruised or has an imperfection.

“I’m turning it into something the customer is going to definitely grab off the shelf,” she said.