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Thursday, July 3, 2014

I'm On An Adventure....A Pie Adventure

I see life as a journey--long for some, short for others.  Crazy and fabulous for many and screwed up for a lot.  Along this journey called life I like to seek adventures.  I'm not talking backpacking through the wilderness or running a marathon type of adventures.  Someday I might do those crazy things, but the types of adventures I like to take are simpler than that.  Taking me back home, back to my roots, back to the basics.  

My Pie Adventure 2014 started back in January, and someday I will tell you about that dreadful, first made-from-scratch pie crust that consisted of tears, yelling, jumping, wine and my wonderful husband running to the store to buy a pre-made crust. 

For the #pieadventure2014 I am making a different type of pie every month and making my own crust.  First mistake I made was not having more in-depth conversations with grandma about the crust.  So in the month of June, my birthday month and half way through my adventure, I decided to head home and learn some basics from Grandma in her kitchen where apparently kids not only eat for free but take free baking lessons too.

I arrived to this scene.  Fresh flowers from her yard,which she always has, along with the pie pan and recipe book open and ready for a Sunday afternoon of baking. 

She had already made the crust which had been in the fridge for two hours. 

LESSON #1:  Your pie crust HAS to be cold before rolling or it will break down into crumbles and so will your baking soul......

"Katherine" she says, "let's get started.  Now put lots of flour on the counter, LOTS."  

"Now take this rolling pin, it's my mother's, and spread it out.  Be gentle.  Stop, you are pushing too hard."  

Okay, well it's cold......

"Oh stop, I have something else we can use."  

She went into the other room in search of this questionable device in one of her many antique cupboards.  She came back with a little, plastic, simple rolling pin looking thing.  

"What is that?" I asked. 

"It's from Pampered Chef.  It works better than that heavy, old rolling pin when you are rolling out your crust."

"GRANDMA, you seriously use that?!?!  I thought you used this old, beautiful, classic rolling pin?  I can't believe this!"  (As my heart breaks like I have been cheated on.)

"Well heaven's yes, I use this.  It's better." 

Even the oldest and wisest can appreciate technology and little luxuries.  Hey, the pie still comes out the same right?

She DID use the rolling pin to get the pie into the pie pan which boggled my mind.

LESSON #2:  Use whatever method you deem appropriate to roll the crust but DO use a rolling pin to get it into the pan. 

We made a cherry pie because it's my absolute favorite and it's very American and it's almost the 4th of July.  I call grandma before Thanksgiving, Christmas and Easter to make sure she has it on her list to bake.  And she always does....not sure why I ask anymore. 

The recipe came from an old Farm Journal Cookbook.  These are pretty much staples in grandma's house.  And hilarious to read the really old ones.  Their thoughts about cooking are similar to ours but the ingredients, gadgets and methods have gotten better over time.  

 Time.....gives us opportunities for more adventures and more pies!

And more time around the table in grandma's farm house kitchen.

 Once the bottom crust had baked a little and the cherries were ready to pour in, she asked me what kind of top crust I wanted to do.  

"Well, I have been afraid to do a lattice top for fear of really screwing it up."  

"Okay then, we will do it.  It's not always easy Katherine, but I'll teach you."

And she did.  And it wasn't very pretty.

LESSON #3:  Everyone can bake a pie but it's not always beautiful.  And it's not always easy.  But it's usually pretty tasty and I think that's all that matters (especially if it's cherry and you know there is ice cream in the freezer).

If you have a good time making it or it teaches you something or someone teaches you something along the way or you spend time with someone, I think that's pretty adventurous all in itself.  

As we let the pie bake and then cool, we caught up over old cookbooks and the usual stack of cooking and home magazines grandma has saved up for me every time I come home.   

All the while my great-grandmother's rolling pin sat on the kitchen counter next to us waiting for the next adventure, pie or otherwise.  

1 comment:

  1. Katie I have that cook book and love it Glad she was there to help you. She is the Best