This weekend I learned all about blind baking a pie crust on the Cooking SE site. They were stumped on why, exactly, it's called "blind baking", however.
For the uninitiated — the highlights of the Cooking answer:
Blind baking is indeed just baking without a filling — it can be fully or partially. Typically you do this because your filling will either need to bake for a shorter time than your crust (a quiche for example) or not at all (a pie filled with some kind of pre cooked/set custard). It can also be done to help 'set' a crust against a filling that will make it rather soggy.
I have no idea why it's called blind baking, but the English.SE site is notoriously good at word origins.
Anyone have any theories or ideas?