Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Healing Pie

One of my very good friends recently had brain surgery (Scary, I know!). He is now on the mend though, and I would like to dedicate my Lemon Meringue Pie to him!
Stiff Peak!

When I first found out about the surgery to come I of course had to ask Garrett about his top 3 favorite pies... When Lemon Meringue was first mentioned I was worried because I had never attempted a Meringue thus far. This, however, was about to change!
Golden Goodness
I tackled the Meringue and graciously won the delicious task.
Now, let us hope that Garrett can tackle his task of being healthy again! Too bad brain surgery is not as simple as a Lemon Meringue Pie!

I would like to think that the Love I bake into my Pies is exuded out with every bite.
It held together well - Yay!

Happy Healing Pie Thoughts To You Friend!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Fall?? Summer?? What??

Summer has flown by!!!!! Heat creates a major baking issue for me--lack of appetite. I know, I know... how could I not be hungry for any baked goods at any time really? The summer sucks it out of me. BUT cooler nights have prompted me to start mixing and chopping again. (I say chopping because of the chopped almonds for the Double Chocolate Almond Biscotti I made the other evening! Mmmmmmm) Baking at night can actually be quite enjoyable. The quiet atmosphere paired with something so calming and enjoyable in itself. You can't help but fall asleep peacefully that night after creating something as beautiful as Zucchini Muffins, Double Chocolate Almond Biscotti, or really anything that tickles your fancy. 

So, summer can kind of suck it when it comes to baking in a non air-conditioned dwelling. That's fine though, you know why? Because the itch to bake always comes back with a vengeance. I have sugary sweet thoughts bouncing around in my head and an upcoming event to help get my Pies back in action. I plan on discussing my other sweets here too more often. Why exclude any delicious treats?!

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Pies Made Thus Far...

I thought it would be a good time to recap over what I have made and what is left to bake from my Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook! It's summer time and there are Mounds of Berries out there ready to be picked and put in a Pie! I haven't made as much progress as I had hoped at this point, but it's never too late to delve into your goals again.

Pies Baked:

Green Apple Pie
Fresh Berry Pie(s)
Berries-and-Cream Pie(s)
Canned Fruit Pie
Frozen Fruit Pie(s)
Pecan Pie
Butterscotch Pie
Two-Crust Berry Pie
Two-Crust Fruit Pie

Now I have done variations and different types of these pies. The index at the beginning of the Pie Chapter in Betty has some repeats and many other sub choices listed under the more general Pies (for example a Berry or Fruit Pie). I am trying to figure a way to organize how I have made my Pies and continue to. 
Perhaps a question to all of you readers may be: 1. Shall I bake the pies from the index and choose a variation accordingly if desired or 2. Shall I make every Pie in the chapter, all variations included???

Sunday, May 15, 2011

~Playing With Recipes~

I haven't posted in quite some time, I KNOW. Aside from my excuses, I am back in baking action and have a few things to share!

The past few days I have been in the mood to try out my own variations. I had never baked anything with puff pastry before and decided to give it a whirl. I used a pre-made pastry-which I don't plan on doing again. I wanted to see how it baked, etc, first before attempting to make my own. I rolled it out and spread on melted butter, then sprinkled cinnamon & sugar over the butter. Rolled it all up and cut it like you would for cinnamon rolls. 

Right before baking!

 Basically, it took around 40 minutes to bake at 350 degrees F and it was good, but it stuck like mad to the glass pan after it cooled down. Certainly tastey though!!

Fresh from the Oven!

 The second attempt was tonight. 

Oatmeal Chocolate Chip Cookies. A classic for sure but I wanted to try out a few flavors I have come across and see what I could create. I am going to keep it a secret for now but I did like the results. 

Thick Dough

The dough was more tastey than the baked product, in my opinion, so I think I need to pick out more flavorful perportions...Something!  My taste testers (My brother Todd and cousin Josh) seemed to enjoy them but they would never disagree with a free dessert. ha.

Not very pretty-but good.

I will definitely keep up this recipe of oatmeal cookies. It is a classic and it's fun to revamp them! It feels good writing again... Any revamped recipes of your own to share?? I would love to hear about them!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Raspberry Cream Pie! With Special Guests...

I know, I know... I haven't posted in a bit! Times are nutty, and unfortunately I am not referring to Pecans. Last week I started up school again and it was hectic to say the least...

This week a Pie was made - Raspberry Cream Pie!

The sad news... I was only able snap one shot of this Pie and it wasn't a very good one. 

One of my favorite people has been in town this week, Risa, and she insisted we make a Pie. Now, out of my kitchen I throwing this thing together with the help of my friends (Nate too) and we made a tastey and "homely" Pie.

The raspberries were frozen and we used a heavy cream (seeing as how a 30% cream call doesn't make much sense to me). We used the One-Crust Pie recipe, as per usual, from page 310. This Pie was also made as an 8inch and I am more familiar with ratios for a 9inch, which may not seem like a big difference but when you are used to "eyeballing" ingredients for a 9inch Pie it can make a big difference with an 8inch.

The results were delicious but soupy. My recommendation -- Always Use Fresh Fruit When Able To. And when you cannot use fresh fruit try to account for the water that will accumulate in your Pie and use flour and or corn starch to thicken it, as you see necessary (generally a few table spoons).

Making Pie with friends is definitely sweet and eating Pie with friends is sweeter! * Awwwww, moment *

Wednesday, March 23, 2011

Pecan Pie!

Spring has started but I still have many winter Pies on the index to make yet... I thought Pecan Pie could suit a sunny, almost spring like day, but would still fullfill the winter Pie list.

To try and include a photo of myself during this process: As requested by Braden...

On page 313 the Pecan Pie recipe states this: "Traditional recipe from Tidewater Virginia. The choice among all desserts served at world renowned Williamsburg Inn in restored colonial Williamsburg." After reading this I decided to Google the Williamsburg Inn. I don't see any mention of said Pecan Pie but it certainly seems like a beautiful place. I'll let you Google it, as well, to see for yourself.

I started out this Pie by making the one crust recipe from page 310.
Unbaked Pie Shell
Next-- Assembled the filling. This filling had me a bit apprehensive because for 1. I had never made a Pecan Pie before and 2. everything was brown at the end. The first ingredients I added was the sugar and melted butter, I did this first because it helped the sugar melt slightly and it also gave me time to mix the two together so that the butter would cool down. Seeing as I just put hot, melted butter in the bowl, I wanted to cool it first before I added the eggs in the recipe. If you don't you may end up with scrambled bits of eggs in your filling and honestly that is gross. 

Sugar and Melted Butter

The eggs were added last, after I sprinkled in salt and the dark corn syrup-that apparently only exists on the bottom left corner of isle 7 at Fred Meyers. 

 The VERY last step to the filling was of course the Pecans, chopped in half. If you buy your Pecans in bulk like I do, you may want to bring along a measuring cup and purchase about a cup and 1/4 cup of whole Pecans. When you chop them in half it reduces the mass in your cup. Also, a little side note for the Pecans: it was less expensive to buy in bulk. Not only were they natural but they didn't have any random additives or were as costly as the prepackaged Pecans on the baking isle of the store. 

Pecans added: Before being baked

 This is the first entry I have made while actually eating the Pie I am writing about. I don't know if this means the pie has improved a lot, but I would like to think so. 

I really enjoyed making this traditional Pie and am definitely looking forward to Spring and Summer Pies! Thank you for reading along-- Don't forget to follow my blog so you can see my updates.
Ta Daaa!!

Monday, March 14, 2011

Happy Pi Day!!!

In honor of Pi day, I decided to make a nice Blackberry Pie. I used a recipe that was not Betty Crocker but it is delicious nonetheless. I think the pictures tell the best story of this weeks Pie.

Before the Baking

I decided to try out a lattice topped Pie for the first time... The edges could use a little help...

I have been getting a lot inspiration the past few weeks concerning my conquest of dessert making. Pie is definitely something I hope to keep up and perfect but I do love other treats as well. I haven't really delved much into cake baking, nor decorating, but I think that may be something to try at some point? Perhaps start smaller with cupcakes? 

Nice Side View

I enjoy Pie baking because I get to piece it together and play with the visual outcome a bit, as well. If you have any thoughts, please share. In the mean time I shall keep sharing my Pies with any, and all who shall read over this kitchy blog of mine!

Finished Product!!
The lattice top here at the end leaves a little to be desired visually... I suppose some practice may help with aesthetics but the oozing Blackberries are distracting me from this delicious mess.

Monday, March 7, 2011

Blueberry Pie: "With thick, fruity juice bubbling through the crust."

Blueberry Pie! Thanks to my good friend Laurie, I was able to use some lovely frozen blueberries to make this great looking pie.

Before the top was added: Pretty Purple!

This pie was pretty simple to put together and really didn't have many ingredients either. I used the two crust recipe, as usual, on page 299.  The simplicity of the Berry Pie recipe in Betty made me a smidge hesitant, seeing as how this was my first Blueberry Pie. I hope my taste testers can give me some real pointers this time.

The tips given for a frozen berry pie were pretty much, if the fruit was sweetened when frozen, use less sugar. I'm sorry but really? I had to bake this pie for almost 20 more minutes than the recipe stated, because a few of the berries were still frozen. I would also recommend putting a little foil top on the pie, so the crust will not burn because of the extra time in the oven.

Finished product!

I am sharing this Blueberry Pie with my classmates from a Poetry Writing Class, I have been taking for the past 10 weeks. Lucky, duckies.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Yesterday, I helped put together a nice Chicken Pot Pie. 
I also had a good long talk about Baking... This got me thinking about what to do next in my food career (or what I like to pretend as my career in food). 
Chicken Pot Pie - Before Baking

I am curious about if I were to sell some of my Pies over the internet...

Would any of you like to purchase a Pie from me? Would you know anyone who would like to purchase Pies?
I am still figuring on how I would ship these Pies quickly, so as to keep them fresh! I am throwing ideas out and hopefully will get some feedback in return!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Canned Peach Pie: "Overflowing with bright, sparkly fruit and juice."

Today I made a variation of the Canned Berry Pie recipe on page 303. I also, used the two pie crust recipe from page 299. I chose the variation of using Peaches instead of a berry.
Canned Peaches taste pretty good... but not as good as canned Peaches in Pie form.

I followed the recipe according but added in less salt this time with the crust and used butter instead of shortening (I really only ever use butter, for personal preference).

The idea of cooking your Pie filling before baking it all together seems more daunting than it really is. The last Pie that called for this, the Butterscotch, was quite the ordeal. However, this nice Peach Pie was very simple. You just had to plop everything in a pot under medium-high heat and stir non-stop until it boiled up a bit.

Supposedly after this has happened you are to pour this mixture into your Pie shell and then dot with butter. After this you are to add your top crust. I kind of forgot to do the butter dotting so while my top crust was getting more and more saturated by the boiling inerds, I was cramming butter cubes through the apple-ish shaped cutouts I had made previously.
You can see the butter : )

I think it just added a little charm.

Oozing Peach goodness

Tasting this Canned Peach Pie was the best part! I rarely have a high liking for Peach flavored things but this was nice. The 3/4 cup of sugar as oppose to the full cup was a good choice and the cinnamon was a nice touch, too. I will certainly have to make this Pie again! 

(dramatic closeup)

Monday, February 7, 2011

Pot Pie.. Heaven?

This weekend I was scuffing around the Oregon Coast. While in Newport, I was able to have dinner with my awesome mates (April, Matthew, Svea) at a very nifty, dimly lit, Irish Pub. Nana's is in Nye Beach and full of great food! Seeing as how I am ALL about PIE though, I had to try out Bridget's Chicken Pot Pie. 

The Pot Pie came in a little crock with an amazing looking crust, baked juuuuuust right (little brown bits with soft, yet flaky peaks). After I jammed my spoon into the middle of the crust to break it apart, the steam escaped and I was soon able to mow down.

Now, most Pot Pies have a creamy sort of too rich but still good sauce. Bridget's Pot Pie was not too heavy at all. In fact, the filling was on the chunky side and the sauce was more of a nice touch. 
What I am trying to say is: Go to Nana's Irish Pub and eat this Pot Pie (or really anything you choose would be fine).

Having a classic Pie made well is a treat and I hope to try out my own soon.

PS: Blueberries.

Monday, January 24, 2011

Butterscotch Pie..."Glossy smooth... with the true butterscotchy flavor."

Wahooo! Yeah! Yay! Yippee!! Cream Pie! And may I add, if that title didn't catch you, I don't know what will.

I haven't had much experience with Cream Pies, and lets just say this one was a bit interesting. I made my Pie Crust from the one crust recipe on page 310 and proceeded to make the seemingly simple filling. 
Crust before baking.

Heating up, let alone boiling sugar, takes some time. Aside from this being a test of my patience, it really wasn't too bad of an experience. The random yoga I did in the kitchen to help pass the time was definitely a good choice, too. 
Melting the butter until golden brown... Yum!

Once the brown sugar was foaming and smelling delicious with the melted butter, I was to add a cup of boiling water. I did remove the pot from the heat before proceeding to this step but it spit up boiling sugar/ water at me while I was yelling. It was a learning experience. Everything after this was pretty simple, it just took a lot of time to wait for things to boil, take it off of the heat, add something, and boil again. I thought this interesting though, because to have a cream pie now you could just mix up a box of pudding and slap it in a pie crust.

Waiting to boil...

I grabbed a couple licks off the spoon before I poured out the filling into the pretty pie crust, it tasted butterscotchy... Success?? The Pie has yet to chill but once this is done I can add whipped cream and start the tastings...

All finished!

I would like to think that this pie adventure has had a good start. It was very fun reading through the ingredients and analogies within the Betty Crocker and to see my pie come out, somewhat how the description says, is pretty satisfying. I hope my taste testers and I have a good experience with this one!

Thank you Betty Crocker for making me use so many dishes for one pie that I had to run my dishwasher afterwards...

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Florrid... The word of the Day!

Cherry Pie

Gather your belongings,
Pick each thing just so.
All of your ingredients must settle,

or your creation will not grow.
The luster will catch you,
if it all came out right.

The florridity of the cut-outs,
create such a beautiful Cherry Pie.

I wrote this poem about pie today and thought I would share : )

Thank you for a very generous donation! I will keep your name private but it will definitely help with my pie conquest.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

A Collage of Pie

On pages 296 and 297 of The Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook there is a collage of pies. The pie on the top right of the collage looks like a blackberry pie with Christmas Tree cut-outs on the top! Basically, they all look perfect and I am wising to have something look anywhere near any of these pies.
Julie and Julia is playing next to me. I am hoping this will bring some sort of encouragement and inspiration to keep up my project. I wouldn't say I am stealing the idea, I would say it is helping me to stay inspired. Knowing other people think about food as much as I do makes me feel as though I belong to something. Food is everything to me. I had the best pulled pork today and made my very first coleslaw to go along with it. It was just amazing. I could never take credit for the pork but the coleslaw almost tastes like a coleslaw... almost.
I also spent the better half of my Sunday watching the Food Network... 

I feel the lack of funds in my very cute clutch bag, and bank account, make the aspirations of pie making a bit difficult. I am antsy to make a nice berry pie of some sort and maybe a nice rich bread... maybe an oatmeal bread because it has been so chilly out. Oatmeal is always better when it is chilly out.  I wonder if there are any pies out there with oatmeal in them? hmmm...

Should I add a Paypal thingy to this? Would anyone want to help? I feel weird asking even. Ponder Ponder

Saturday, January 1, 2011

2011... The Big Idea REVEALED!

Happy New Year Everyone!

Today is the first day of the new year... I am glad for the opportunity to have some new adventures. I would like to thank my mates who have followed me thus far but I am ready to REALLY have a direction with this blog -> Lengthy chat about Pie and it's greatness. 

The Big Idea:
I have decided I should learn to make pies, all sorts of pies. My Grandma Musselman's Betty Crocker Picture Cookbook, has been a great inspiration for my baking and I would like to make every Pie within the Pie Section of this cookbook (around maybe 95ish). I will then write about each pie and the good/ bad that comes with this. My goal is to have mates try out each pie, MYSELF INCLUDED, and write a review on it (if they would be so kind to) here.

To be fair, I have made a handful of pies already (this could be possible with the tiny pie recipes in Betty). This however, has given me Zero knowledge on what the difference is between a custard, cream or chiffon pie. I have no idea. But I am dying to know.

I haven't really written for anyone but myself before so I apologize for the poor structure but I feel the content is worth sharing... Unfortunately, I am lacking in the funds department so the pies will take some time to really get going on, but I am anxious none the less.

Thank you for any words! I hope everyone has a great year ahead of them, happiness and adventures included <3 Oh and I hope many delicious sweets may come your way!