Monday, November 28, 2005

Easy As Pie--Dough

This is the easiest ever pie dough (crust). If anyone has ever had problems with making a pie dough I invite you to try this. My Mom, Grandmothers, and Aunts have all been wonderful bakers and I thought I just couldn't make an edible pie until a friend at work (Jeanne) told me about this wonderful recipe that I have used for years. You can use it for sweet or savory fillings. If you are making a 1 crust pie just use half and freeze half. You can also just take the extra dough and sprinkle with cinnamon and sugar for a little extra treat. The pictures show the the steps. First--Mix 2 cups all purpose flour with a pinch of salt in a large bowl (you can omit the salt). Second--Mix 2/3 cup oil (I like canola--it is light) and 1/3 cup milk (you can use cream, half & half, skim, whatever you like). Third--mix the liquid into the dry with a fork. It will make a sticky mixture but don't panic. Form the dough into a ball. Halve the dough and form 2 dough balls. Roll each ball out between pieces of waxed paper or plastic wrap. Proceed as you would with any pie recipe. Just know that this will not be like a fancy dough with chilled butter that is kneaded and rested. It is very forgiving. If it tears in the pie plate just patch it up--it will be fine. These pictures show the making of a Cherry Pie which we had on Thanksgiving. Next post I plan on showing the Cherry Pie recipe. Hope if you try this it is successful for you. It has been very consistent for me--always flaky. Happy baking .


Sunday, November 27, 2005

Flavor of Cherry Pie

This is a favorite Cherry Pie Recipe. The previous post has the recipe for my favorite pie crust.
I adapted this filling recipe from Meta Given's Modern Encyclopedia of Cooking.

Make pastry.
The filling ingredients are as follows:
2 cans of sour red cherries (water packed)
1 cup sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
2 1/2 tablespoons of cornstarch
3 to 4 drops almond extract
1 tablespoon butter
3 to 4 drops red food coloring
Drain juice from cherries: there should be about 3/4 cup of juice. Blend sugar, salt and cornstarch in saucepan. Stir in juice gradually until smooth. Place over heat and cook and stir until clear and very thick. Remove from heat, stir in extract, butter and coloring, then the cherries. Set in pan of cold water to cool. Roll out pastry and line a 9" pie pan. Turn cooked cherries into lined pan, spreading level. Top with other half of rolled pastry. Crimp edges and put a few fork or knife holes in top pastry to vent. I like to make mine into a design. It also makes a nice crust if you brush the top with milk or cream and sprinkle with a bit of of sugar, but this is optional. Bake about 30 minutes in a 425 degree preheated oven or until golden brown. Juice should bubble up through the cuts in the crust. Remove from oven and cool on a rack for 2-3 hours before cutting. Ovens are different and yours may be different than mine. If the edges of the crust seem to be getting brown and the rest of the crust is not--cover the edges with aluminum foil to keep it from getting too dark. We had this pie for Thanksgiving this year instead of the traditional pumpkin. It is a standard at our house. If you try it I hope you like it. The crust is for you Tattum and the cherries for you Fanny.
Happy Baking,
Fran






Source of Morning Flavor

This is one of the trees that provide wonderful flavors to our meals. Abundant harvest this year. Orange Juice, marmalade, cakes, cookies, scones and savory dishes too. Recipes soon!

First Flavors

First flavors of this day were from freshly squeezed orange juice. There is an abundance of citrus in our yard this season and we will enjoy many of the flavors from these fruits. Breakfast was nice and warm--pancakes with butter and organic raspberry preserves, crisp bacon and "dino" eggs.