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pie weights

Small pelletlike metal or ceramic weights used when baking an unfilled pie or tart crust to keep it from shrinking. The weights (from 1 to 2 cups) are poured into a foil-lined unbaked pie crust. The shell is then partially baked, the foil and weights lifted out, and then the baking is finished. Pie weights can be found in gourmet shops. See also bake blind.