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Tag Archive: pie

Jul 01

Ah yes, there’s something about pie – from my archived columns first published in The Examiner, an eastern Jackson County, Mo. daily newspaper

bakedlattice

“One little thing can revive a guy, and that is a homemade rhubarb pie. Serve it up nice and hot, maybe things aren’t as bad as you thought.” – A Prairie Home Companion

One thing I know about pie is that in the summertime when there is a bounty of fresh peaches, strawberries and rhubarb, eating a fruit pie is the next best thing to nirvana.

I just wish I could make one, but more about that later.

First let me mention that I found it quite odd that pie was in the news a lot this week. When does that ever happen? I can’t think of a time. This week when news headlines screamed ‘pie’, it was not because pie is a delicious dessert and overdue for accolades.

No, it was because the word ‘pie’ was trending on social media networks in which bloggers argued about whether one should throw a pie in someone’s face or not. That global discussion happened due to the fake custard pie thrown at Rupert Murdoch, media mogul, in the U.K. phone hacking hearings under way this week in London.

At least it wasn’t a real custard pie; what a waste that would be.

I agree with Rabbi Krustofski (Krusty’s Dad on the Simpsons) who said, “Pie is for noshing (eating) not for throwing.”

Since pie was in the news constantly this week, it became difficult for me to think about anything other than pie. That and fresh peaches is probably what drove me to browse through a stack of dust-covered baking cookbooks, long ago stored away and unused.

I am not the pie baker in our household, as you may have guessed by now, so I never needed the cookbooks. But I like to look at the pictures.

The real pie baker in our home, the hubby, doesn’t need a “how to bake a pie” cookbook either, but for a different reason. He knows the recipe by heart.

His mother and sister made glorious pies with perfect flaky crusts, and so did my mother and grandmother. Somewhere along the line, I missed the pie-baking gene, but I am quite good at eating them.

Grandchildren beg for one of “Paw-Paw’s” pies for their birthdays. Grown children love one when we come to visit. We take them to potlucks, funerals and to welcome a new neighbor. Sometimes, they are auctioned off at charity fundraisers, and they always bring a good amount.

I guess you could say pie is a big thing in our household, and the hubby’s homemade pie is shared freely. However, convincing the spousal unit to part with his prize recipe is quite another matter.

I tried.

All he ‘forked over’ was the recipe for the peach pie filling he baked last week. I must say, it could be the best peach pie I ever tasted. However, he was not forthcoming with his pie crust recipe.

Trade secret, he says. Dear readers, I am sorry to say you are on your own when it comes to the crust.

While they are available, find some fresh peaches and try his ‘top-secret’ peach pie recipe shown below. (Baker’s tip: the recipe calls for grenadine syrup, making the filling slightly pink in color. The sweetness of the syrup coupled with the lemon juice makes a perfectly blended sweet and tart filling.)

Ah yes, there is just something about pie.

Top Secret Sweet and Tart Peach Pie Filling:

Three-fourths cup sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
One-fourth teaspoon ground nutmeg
6 cups peaches, peeled and thickly sliced (about 3 pounds)
3 tablespoons (yes, tablespoons) of grenadine syrup
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter or margarine

In a large bowl combine sugar, flour and nutmeg; add peaches and toss until well-coated. Let mixture stand 5 minutes. Carefully stir in grenadine and lemon juice. Place mixture in pastry in pie plate spreading peaches evenly; dot with butter or margarine. Cover edges with foil. Bake in 375-degree oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil; bake for 30 to 35 minutes more or until crust is golden. Cool on rack before serving.

“You had me at fruit pies.” – Bobby Hill, “King of the Road” television show

Jul 21

There’s something about pie

“One little thing can revive a guy, and that is a homemade rhubarb pie. Serve it up nice and hot, maybe things aren’t as bad as you thought.” – A Prairie Home Companion

One thing I know about pie is that in the summertime when there is a bounty of fresh peaches, strawberries and rhubarb, eating a fruit pie is the next best thing to nirvana.

I just wish I could make one, but more about that later.

First let me mention that I found it quite odd that pie was in the news a lot this week. When does that ever happen? I can’t think of a time. This week when news headlines screamed ‘pie’, it was not because pie is a delicious dessert and overdue for accolades.

No, it was because the word ‘pie’ was trending on social media networks in which bloggers argued about whether one should throw a pie in someone’s face or not. That global discussion happened due to the fake custard pie thrown at Rupert Murdoch, media mogul, in the U.K. phone hacking hearings under way this week in London.

At least it wasn’t a real custard pie; what a waste that would be.

I agree with Rabbi Krustofski (Krusty’s Dad on the Simpsons) who said, “Pie is for noshing (eating) not for throwing.”

Since pie was in the news constantly this week, it became difficult for me to think about anything other than pie. That and fresh peaches is probably what drove me to browse through a stack of dust-covered baking cookbooks, long ago stored away and unused.

I am not the pie baker in our household, as you may have guessed by now, so I never needed the cookbooks. But I like to look at the pictures.

The real pie baker in our home, the hubby, doesn’t need a “how to bake a pie” cookbook either, but for a different reason. He knows the recipe by heart.

His mother and sister made glorious pies with perfect flaky crusts, and so did my mother and grandmother. Somewhere along the line, I missed the pie-baking gene, but I am quite good at eating them.

Grandchildren beg for one of “Paw-Paw’s” pies for their birthdays. Grown children love one when we come to visit. We take them to potlucks, funerals and to welcome a new neighbor. Sometimes, they are auctioned off at charity fundraisers, and they always bring a good amount.

I guess you could say pie is a big thing in our household, and the hubby’s homemade pie is shared freely. However, convincing the spousal unit to part with his prize recipe is quite another matter.

I tried.

All he ‘forked over’ was the recipe for the peach pie filling he baked last week. I must say, it could be the best peach pie I ever tasted. However, he was not forthcoming with his pie crust recipe.

Trade secret, he says. Dear readers, I am sorry to say you are on your own when it comes to the crust.

While they are available, find some fresh peaches and try his ‘top-secret’ peach pie recipe shown below. (Baker’s tip: the recipe calls for grenadine syrup, making the filling slightly pink in color. The sweetness of the syrup coupled with the lemon juice makes a perfectly blended sweet and tart filling.)

Ah yes, there is just something about pie.

Top Secret Sweet and Tart Peach Pie Filling:

Three-fourths cup sugar
3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
One-fourth teaspoon ground nutmeg
6 cups peaches, peeled and thickly sliced (about 3 pounds)
3 tablespoons (yes, tablespoons) of grenadine syrup
2 tablespoons lemon juice
2 tablespoons butter or margarine

In a large bowl combine sugar, flour and nutmeg; add peaches and toss until well-coated. Let mixture stand 5 minutes. Carefully stir in grenadine and lemon juice. Place mixture in pastry in pie plate spreading peaches evenly; dot with butter or margarine. Cover edges with foil. Bake in 375-degree oven for 25 minutes. Remove foil; bake for 30 to 35 minutes more or until crust is golden. Cool on rack before serving.

“You had me at fruit pies.” – Bobby Hill, “King of the Road” television show

May 06

I don’t want the pie, I’ll take the burned toast

“A mother is a person who seeing there are only four pieces of pie for five people, promptly announces she never did care for pie.” – Tenneva Jordan.

It is funny how a mother or grandmother’s selfless actions become a part of us and how we pass those on to our children and grandchildren without even knowing that we do.

For instance, the other day at breakfast when I inadvertently burned a piece of toast, I commented to the offspring, “I’ll take that burned one, that is my favorite. I really like burned toast. Really, I do. ”

Then, I stopped in my tracks taking note of what I said and paying attention to my own voice.

Almost word for word, I said what my Grandmother said to me on many an occasion in my youth, “I like burned toast, give me that piece.”

Did she? Probably not, and neither do I. Yet, from somewhere deep in the soul, deep in our DNA, a mother will announce, when there is not enough pie to go around, for example, “I don’t really like pie anyway.”

We cannot help ourselves.

Or, if we are chilly, we are certain that the child is, too, and soon enough he or she will be warm and snug in our sweater.

The odd thing to me is that when one becomes a mother, inexplicably, nature and animal instincts take over our senses, our thought processes, our responses and our temperament.

Osho Rajneesh, Indian professor of philosophy, once noted, “The moment a child is born, the mother is also born. She never existed before. The woman existed, but the mother, never. A mother is something absolutely new.”

Mothers have nothing to say about it at all really. Animal instinct happens, and when it does, mothers do not get hungry if there is not enough food to go around. Mothers are known to give it to their starving offspring instead, and strangely, they themselves do not suffer.

Mothers do not get cold if the child needs their coat.

Mothers do not mind eating burned food; they simply do not notice its taste.

Somewhere and somehow a benevolent, incomprehensible power, that many of us choose to call God, gives mothers an unexplainable innate quality, the ability to put oneself at the end of the line.

This quote from Marion C. Garretty in “A Little Spoonful of Chicken Soup for the Mother’s Soul” says it better than I. “Mother love is the fuel that enables a normal human being to do the impossible.”

At a picnic recently when there was not enough chocolate cake to go around, I blurted out from somewhere deep within my very being to one of the little kiddos at the table, “Here, take mine. I never liked chocolate much anyway. I just want the vanilla ice cream.”

There, I did it again. I can’t help myself. After all, it is what my Grandmother would have done.

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