Monthly Archives: September 2011

Pie #44 – Chocolate Chip Cookie Pie

Before I start on my pie tangent, I feel the need to plug a singer who is working his way onto the cultural radar. His name is Marc Martel and he’s auditioning for the Queen Extravaganza which is being organized by Roger Taylor, the drummer for Queen. It’s a touring show that will hit the road next year. The tour is looking for singers and musicians to play the very best of Queen. Marc sent in a video audition where he sings Somebody to Love. It’s on You Tube, the clip is here. It is absolutely unbelievable. This guy should actually replace Paul Rogers who is currently fronting the band. End unsolicited plug for Marc…

Pie number 44 is a cookie pie. André has expressed an interest in my making a big pie that’s like a cookie and today I was feeling the mood for it. It’s very simple; prep took about 20 minutes and the total time from start to finish is just over an hour. Perfect if you are trying to watch football:)

This pie recipe is from About.com and is attributed to Linda Larsen.

It’s a cookie! It’s a pie!

The pie!:

2 eggs

1/2 cup flour

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup brown sugar

3/4 cup butter, melted

2 cups semi-sweet chocolate chips

1 9″ unbaked pie shell

Pre-heat oven to 325 degrees F. Beat eggs well in large bowl. Add flour and sugars and mix until well blended. Stir in the melted butter. Add chips . Pour into unbaked pie shell, and bake at 325F for 55-65 minutes until puffy and golden brown. Let cool at least two hours before cutting. It’s currently on a rack in my kitchen cooling. I’m ready to eat and have whip cream and ice cream to add. Go big. I love me some cookie pie!

8 to go:)

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Pie #43 – Cherry Pie with Lattice top

I took my wife to Sonoma, CA for the weekend in celebration of her 40th birthday. It was also our 5th wedding anniversary.  So it all came together quite nicely. We invited 15 of our friends to a beautiful and large home called Artisan House on the Russian River. It was truly a great weekend of fun and laughs. With a hot tub. In a small amount of spare time, I baked pie 43, a cherry pie with a lattice top.

Pie by the Russian River

The crust!:

2 ready-made pie crusts (hey, I was on vacation)

The filling!:

4 cups cherries (fresh or frozen)

1/2 tsp. cinnamon

1/4 cup unbleached flour

1 cup sugar

Thaw one of your ready-made pie crusts. You’ll cut that for your lattice.

Mix cherries, flour, cinnamon and sugar into a large mixing bowl. Pour into your frozen pie shell.

Flatten your thawed pie crust. Cut lattice from your thawed crust and weave on top of the pie. Pinch the edges to the shell.

Bake at 425F, for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 350F and bake an extra 25-30 minutes or until crust is light brown.

It was really tasty and had a nice hint of the cinnamon. It was also quite juicy and sweet. Just like our weekend! All of our friends who tried it really liked it too.

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Pie #42 – Butterscotch Meringue Pie

And so today is 9/11/2011. Ten years ago I worked at an ad agency called Foote, Cone and Belding. On that day, as I was getting ready for work, I checked my email and a friend had just posted an email to our email list. It said simply, “Plane hit WTC. On fire.” I turned on the TV and couldn’t really process what I was watching. My first reaction was “is this some kind of joke?” I called a co-worker and asked him if he was watching TV. He handed the phone to my boss who told me that the office was closed for the day. I watched everything unfold and then rode my bike into downtown San Francisco. It was practically empty. I just sat on a bench on Market Street, took in the mental pictures of that day, where I was, and tried to rationalize. No rationalization came. Still hasn’t.

I find that after 10 years there’s still a lot of things I can’t watch in relation to the attacks. It’s still upsetting, unnerving, unsettling. It was one mindf*ck of a day. And so much has changed, on so many levels.

On this anniversary, it is also week one of the NFL football season. So I’ve spent my day watching games, buying supplies for pie number 42 and typing this. Today I made a butterscotch meringue pie. So much for low carb or vegan. The sweet is back. On the anniversary of a day that is anything but.

The crust!:

One pre-made graham cracker crust (Today is lazy-time)

The filling!:

1 cup brown sugar (not packed)
2  tbsp. flour
2 tbsp. butter
1 tsp. vanilla
1 cup cold water
2 egg yolks (slightly beaten)
This recipe can also be used (without the pie crust, of course) to make butterscotch pudding.

Butterscotch Meringue Pie

Combine sugar and flour in the top of a double boiler. I used a glass bowl as the top of the boiler, with a spaghetti pot filled 1/4 full as the bottom. Bring water to a boil. Add remaining ingredients in order given, adding the water and eggs last. Mix the egg yolks with 2 teaspoons of water before adding. Cook until mixture has thickened and coats the back of a spoon. About 20 minutes. Remove from heat.Pour the mixture into a prepared 9-inch pie crust.

Meringue Topping!:
Beat 3 egg whites until stiff. While beating, gradually add 6 tablespoons of white sugar, 2 tablespoons at a time. Beat well after each addition. Add 1 teaspoon of pure vanilla. Continue to beat until stiff peaks form.Spread the meringue over the top of the pie, all the way to the edges. If you don’t spread it to the crusts to seal, the meringue may shrink.

Put the pie in a preheated 375F oven until the meringue has browned. Let cool to room temperature. Eat and enjoy.

 

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Pie #41 – Healthy Apple Cinnamon Pie

There’s a lot going on around town this long Labor Day weekend. It’s all spelled F-I-R-E. It’s really windy here and my wife and I keep a watchful eye as the wind whips and some of the surrounding area burns.  I wish all my friends in the affected areas surrounding Austin love and blessings. I hope you are alright. The only upside to the weather is that it’s a downright chilly 90F in the area today. It should be like this for the rest of the week. Which will be nice.

Pie 41 is a simple yet healthy apple cinnamon pie. The crust is a wheat flour crust/unbleached flour mix. I like the crust for this; it was manageable and easy to transfer. It was also really simple. The recipe for the crust only makes one so if you need a top for your pie you’ll need to double up on the ingredients.

The crust!:

Pie number 41, Healthy Apple Pie

3/4 cup whole-wheat pastry flour

3/4 cup unbleached flour

1/4 cup natural corn oil (Iused canola)

1 pinch salt

1/2 cup ice water

Blend ingredients together in a small bowl until it forms a flaky dough. If it seems dry, add one tablespoon of cold water at a time until it holds together.  Form into ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and freeze for one hour. Roll out one crust and transfer to a 9 in. pie dish. Place in fridge until you are ready to fill with your apples.

The filling!:

4-5 Granny Smith apples, peeled and sliced in thin wedges

2 tbsp. cinnamon

1 cup equivalent of sweetener (make sure you read the label for equivalent of sugar)

2 tbsp. wheat flour

1/2 cup margarine or butter

Pre-heat oven to 325F.

In a large bowl, peel and slice your apples. Add your cinnamon and blend into apples. Mix flour into sweetener. Place the peeled, sliced apples in the crust until it’s about 2/3 full. Sprinkle half the sweetener mix over apples. Place remaining apples slices into pan and sprinkle remaining sweetener mix over them apples. Slice the margarine and dot over the pie.

Roll out your top crust and transfer to pie. Crimp edges decoratively. Slice top to vent.

Bake for 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 hours or until the crust is light brown.

Mmmmm, delish. Sugar free apple ice cream adds to the pie as a nice garnish.

I have 11 pies to go:) It must mean that fall is almost upon us. Now if fall would only bring rain…

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