Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Beat the Heat with Lemon Velvet Pie

My Queen-of-all-things-domestic sister created this recipe. It's such a nice change from the more traditional lemon meringue. With just a bit of stop top cooking, its a great choice for a warm evening dessert. I left off the top layer just to save on a few calories, but I know the yummy cream cheese topping would make this pie even better. Let me know if you try this one, please!

Lemon Velvet Pie

1 9" baked pie shell
1 1/2 cups sugar
6 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 tsp salt
1 1/2 cup water
2 egg yolks, beaten
2 tablespoons butter
1/3 cup lemon juice
1 teaspoon finely grated lemon rind
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 tablespoon gelatin
1/4 cup water
1 cup light cream
2 egg whites, beaten stiff
1 small carton cool whip
4 oz cream cheese

Combine sugar, cornstarch and salt. Slowly add water. Cook until thick. Add small amount to egg yolks. Mix and return to hot mixture with butter. Cook 2 minutes. Stir in lemon juice, grated rind and vanilla. Spread 1 cup of filling in bottom of baked pie shell.

Soften gelatin in 1/4 cup cold water. Stir into remaining filling until dissolved. Gradually add cream. Cool. When mixture begins to thicken, fold in beaten egg whites. Pour into pie shell. Chill.

Soften cream cheese. Mix with cool whip until smooth. Spread on top of lemon filling. Chill until served.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Guest Baker

Eli's 11 year old friend Cole follows Pie Parade so of course we invited him over to help make some Apple Hand Pies with apples from our trees. It was a fun adventure!

First the boys picked apples while I made the dough. Then they used the apple peeler/corer to make slices. After preparing 14 apples, they had to go back and pick 6 more. I guess some of the fruit never made it to the bowl! They mixed in some sugar, flour and cinnamon.

They placed some apple mixture on one side of the dough disc. Next they dampened half the edge with a wet finger.

They needed to seal the edges so all the yummy juices don't leak out during baking.

With 3 cups of flour worth of dough and most of 20 small apples, we yeilded about
24 pies.

Here is the proud baker with the delicious hand pies. Thanks for helping out Cole! Anytime you feel like baking a pie, you know where to come.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Just Peachy

I just can't get enough peaches! Even when the kitchen is hot and I don't feel much like cooking dinner, I can be easily convinced to bake a delicious peach pie. Maybe the pie will be dinner! Here is another way to enjoy peaches in pie. This recipe comes from Emeril Lagasse and Foodnetwork.com.

Ruston Peach Crumb Pie

1 1/2 cups water
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 1/4 teaspoons cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon nutmeg
pinch of black pepper
2 pounds peaches, peeled, pitted and cut into wedges (about 3 cups)
1/2 cup flour
1 cup ground pecan pieces
1/2 stick butter, cut into small pieces
1 unbaked 9 inch pie crust

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. In a saucepan, combine the water, brown sugar, cornstarch, salt, 1 teaspoon of cinnamon, 1/2 teaspoon of grated nutmeg, and pepper. Whisk until smooth. Place the pan over high heat and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to medium and simmer for 2 minutes. Remove from the heat. Place the peaches in a mixing bowl and pour the syrup over the peaches. Toss well and cool for 10 minutes. In a mixing bowl, combine the remaining cinnamon, remaining nutmeg, sugar, flour, pecans, and butter. Using your fingers, work the mixture together until it resembles a coarse crumb-like mixture. Pour the peaches into the prepared pie shell. Sprinkle the topping over the top of the peaches. Bake for 1 hour, or until the crust is golden. Serve with vanilla ice cream.

My notes: I loved the pecans in the crumb topping. The amount of syrup and topping was too much to cover my 9" pie so next time I'll cut a few extra peaches and use the 10" plate.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Peach Paradise

The peaches have been outstanding this summer. I have made more than a few double crust peach pies and just couldn't pass up the opportunity to browse the recipe sites for a new way to use peaches. This is a peach custard and it turned out a million times better than plain custard. I love how the peaches rise to the top of the custard and keep their pretty color. This recipe comes from COOKS.COM.

Peach Custard Pie

1 cup sugar
4 tablespoon flour
2 eggs
1 cup milk

Mix sugar and flour, then add eggs and milk. Place sliced peaches in raw pie shell until shell is covered. Pour custard over peaches, dot with butter and sprinkle nutmeg over top of pie. Bake at 425 degrees for 20 minutes, reduce temperature to 325 degrees and continue baking until custard is set.

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Buttermilk Dilemma

Every once in a while I buy a carton of buttermilk. I need it for my Italian Cream Cake (yes, I do make cake on occasion) and it's yummy in whole wheat banana pancakes. The dilemma is what to do with the rest? I was in a frenzy a while ago trying to find pie recipes that use buttermilk. I was not disappointed! I apologize for the horrible photo, but this pie was awesome and super quick and easy to make. I found it on foodnetwork.com and it comes from Sandra Lee. Try it next time you have leftover buttermilk. And stayed tuned for my Lemon Buttermilk Pie recipe.

Chocolate Buttermilk Pie

1 1/2 cups chocolate chips
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt
6 eggs
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 tablespoons vanilla
1 pre-baked 9" deep dish pie crust
whipping cream or cool whip for garnish

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. Position a rack in the center of the oven.

Place the chocolate chips in a double boiler and melt over low heat, stirring constantly.

In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar, flour and salt until well combined. In a large mixing bowl, combine the eggs, buttermilk and vanilla. Add the sugar mixture and mix with an electric mixer or whisk vigorously. Bring this mixture to room temperature by microwaving for 1 minute or more on low power. Stir the melted chocolate into the warmed batter. (Warming the batter keeps the chocolate from setting as it's mixed in.)

Pour batter into the piecrust; you will have about 1 cup of left-over batter. Place pie in oven on middle rack. Bake for 1 hour and 15 minutes to 1 hour and 25 minutes, or until the pie is crisp on top and a knife inserted in the center comes out with just a bit of moist chocolate on it.

Remove from oven and cool completely. Let stand at least 1 hour before serving. If not eating immediately, refrigerate pie. This pie can be served warm or chilled. Garnish with whipped cream.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Quilting is Fun Too.

Would you indulge me for a minute? I just finished this quilt and sent it off to my Cody for his birthday. I'm so proud of him and all he has accomplished in his great life. He served a 2 year mission to Russia, which is how he earned a quilt from his mother. He is also a delight to be around, helpful in many useful ways, as smart as a whip, incredible handsome and fit and treats me like a queen whenever we're together. Even though I couldn't bake him a pie for his birthday, I know he'll appreciate the same feeling of warmth and love a quilt creates. Happy Birthday Cody! I love you.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Pie for Dinner

I would never have a problem serving a sweet and fruity pie for dinner, and believe me, it has happened. But I do love to serve Chicken Pot Pie because it tastes so good, it looks so pretty on the table, it covers all the food groups in one dish, it's easy to make ahead and everybody loves it. I especially like to make one for dinner and one to share with a friend or neighbor. But then I've never been capable of only making one pie at a time! I would love to branch out and find more savory pie recipes. Do you have one to share?

Chicken (or Turkey) Pot Pie

1 1/2 cups cooked and cubed chicken
2 potatoes, peeled and diced
1 carrot, peeled and diced
1 onion, diced
1 chicken bullion cube
1/2 tsp garlic powder
2 tablespoons flour
1 package Turkey Gravy Mix
1 cup milk
salt and pepper to taste
prepared crust for a 2 crust 10" pie
1 can tomato soup, prepared as directed

Boil potatoes, carrot and onion in 1 1/2 cups water till tender. Save 1 cup of water, then drain vegetables. To the water, add bullion, garlic powder, flour and gravy mix. When well combined, add milk and salt and pepper.

Place meat and vegetables in the prepared crust. Pour gravy mix over all. Top with remaining crust and seal edges well. Slit the top crust to allow steam to escape. Place on a baking sheet to catch spills and bake at 425 degrees for 45 minutes, taking care that crust doesn't over brown.

Serve hot with warmed tomato soup as a topping.

Monday, August 15, 2011

Birthday Pie

In our family pie is the preferred dessert over cake. Last week Josiah asked for 3 pies of his very own for his birthday, and it's not even coming for 6 months! Brookie also asked for pies for her birthday party coming up in a couple of weeks. What's amazing, is that they both asked for the exact same three: Pear Raisin, Blueberry and Apple. Of course that's a challenge because pear and apple are fall pies and bluberry is a spring pie. Luckily, in California you can pretty much get any fruit you want at any time of the year. Whew! A pie disaster averted.

This week I made a peach pie for a friend's birthday. I hope she knows how much I love her and that a birthday pie comes with hope for a wonderful, sweet and prosperous coming year.

I also made a peach pie (can you really ever make too many?) for my Mom's birthday. I was really hoping my bird would sing for the birthday girl. Not to be. But Mom loved my peach pie and I love her.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Blueberry Bliss

When I consider my favorite pies of all time, blueberry has to be somewhere very near the top. I especially like a fresh pie with blueberries that still pop when you bite into them. They are so sweet and wonderful! The perfect flaky crust adds just the right foundation for the cooked filling. A spoonful of freshly whipped cream brings everything together like a cool breeze under a shady tree on a sunny day. Nothing in the world can be too wrong if you have a beautiful blueberry pie to share with your family.

This is the best recipe I've found for Blueberry pie. It comes from the Farm Journal Country Cookbook.

Fresh Blueberry Pie

3/4 cup sugar
3 TBSP corn starch
1/8 tsp salt
1/4 cup water
2 cups blueberries
1 TBSP butter
1 TBSP lemon juice
2 cups blueberries
1 baked 9" shell
sweetened whipped cream

Combine sugar, cornstarch, salt. Add water, 2 cups blueberries. Cook over medium heat. Stir constantly till boils, thick, clear. Remove. Stir in butter, juice. Cool. Place 2 cups blueberries in shell. Cover with cooked mixture and chill.