Enter a baker's trick that doesn't have much to do with blind baking your pie shell or timing it perfectly. Some may say it's a lazy trick, but for juicy fruit-based pies, it can be a lifesaver. Two words: graham crackers.
I learned this trick from a mentor who taught me a great deal about baking, and she always sprinkled a layer of thinly ground graham cracker crumbs on the bottom of all of her pies before filling and baking. It soaks up any excess liquid that is bound to make your bottom crust a little limp. In Chez Panisse Fruit, one of my favorite narrowly-focused cookbooks, Alice Waters talks about sprinkling a fine layer of ground ameretti cookies on the bottom crust of her pies and tarts. Same theory, slightly different flavor. I've heard of some folks using breadcrumbs or even ground cornflakes. Regardless of what you choose, it may be worth experimenting before the Thanksgiving pie-onslaught begins. And it will, happily, in no time.
Related: 5 Steps to Make Perfect Pie Crust
(Image: Megan Gordon)