Posts tagged #Pie

Pilgrim Squash Pie

Recipe: Pilgrim Squash Pie

Summary: There is a long standing debate in my family about squash vs. pumpkin pie at Thanksgiving. I'm personally grateful it's a gluttonous day and can justify both, but the debate with the New England relatives rages on. We are descendants of John Alden and Priscilla Mullins so this is no little family spat. The crux of their argument is that our country's first settlers wouldn't have had pumpkins. They had squash and therefore made squash pie. Truthfully they wouldn't have had sugar either and I personally don't think I could eat either a squash or pumpkin pie that was sweetened only with molasses. You'll find the squash similar to pumpkin in its preparation, but the final product is much lighter in flavor, texture, and color.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups squash
  • 1½ to 2 cups whole milk, cream, or evaporated milk
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • ½ cup sugar (or more to taste)
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • ¼ teaspoon nutmeg, or more to taste (I always prefer fresh grated)
  • ¼ teaspoon ginger (optional)
  • Prepared, unbaked 9" pie crust

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Mix squash, milk and eggs together.
  3. Beat in sugar and spices.
  4. Pour batter into 9" pie plate prepared with unbaked pastry.
  5. Bake at 425 for 20 minutes, then reduce heat to 375 for an additional 40 minutes, or until center is set.  (Adjust time and temperatures to work with your oven.)

Quick Notes

1. Until the advent of the internet, there weren't a lot of squash pie recipes readily available because it wasn't a recipe that was written down in anyone's secret stash or even many cookbooks. For the most part, like today's pumpkin pie bakers, modern cooks used the recipe on the can! Squash, like pumpkin, is very labor intensive to peel, chop, and cook down to a usable form even before you make the pie crust and only pilgrims without access to canned goods should have to make this pie completely from scratch.  This is not one of those instances to freak about freshness because it won't make a difference in the final product.  New England bakers can usually find the One Pie brand of canned squash at the supermarket.  Organic canned squash is also out there.  Even frozen squash is perfectly acceptable.   Midwest and west coast bakers will need a specialty store or suck it up and do it from scratch.

2. Steam the squash in the microwave or bake it and let it cool before trying to peel it. You will save yourself hours and stitches. (Yes, I've had the stitches too.)

Variations

1. Use canned or frozen squash if you can find it.

2. The kind of squash you use doesn't especially matter, but make it a winter squash. I like butternut or acorn. The acorn is a little harder to peel and yields less pulp.

3. Adjust the milk, egg, squash proportions to make your pie a heavier custard or more chiffon-like.

Cooking time:   lots to get from squash to pie

Meal type: dessert

Culinary tradition: USA (Traditional, historic)

Microformatting by hRecipe.

Posted on November 23, 2010 and filed under Desserts.

Apple Pie

Recipe: Apple Pie

Summary: Lots of steps, but what apple pie isn't??

Ingredients

CRUST:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon baking powder
  • ¾ cup shortening
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vinegar
  • Ice water

FILLING:

  • 3/4 cup sugar (white or brown depends on personal preference)
  • 1-3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • Dash salt
  • Fresh nutmeg
  • 6-7 peeled, cored, and chopped or sliced apples
  • 1 (16-ounce) jar quality applesauce
  • 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon lemon zest
  • 2 tablespoons butter, chopped into small pieces
CRUNCH TOPPING:
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • Dash salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter, at room temperature

Instructions

  1. Preheat oven to 425°.
  2. Crust:  Combine dry ingredients. Cut in shortening.
  3. Beat egg in a liquid measure. Add vinegar and enough water to equal ⅓ c.
  4. Add to dry ingredients and form dough into a ball.
  5. NOTE: I usually make this in the food processor and roll either on a silicone baking sheet or between sheets of plastic wrap. This allows you to roll it thin and still pick it up without having to add extra flour to handle.
  6. Line a 9-inch pie pan with half of dough.
  7. Filling:  Combine the sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt and lemon zest in a bowl. Stir in the apples, applesauce, and lemon juice.
  8. Spoon the apple mixture into pie pan and dot with butter.
  9. Cut remaining crust into strips; arrange in a lattice design over top of pie.
  10. Crunch topping: Combine the flour, sugar and salt in a bowl. Using a fork, cut in butter until mixture is crumbly. Sprinkle over top of crust.
  11. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce heat to 350° and continue to bake for about 45 minutes, or until crust and topping are golden brown.

Quick Notes

NOTES: I use an 8 oz bottle of applesauce and cook it down so it's thick before adding it to the apples. This is really the secret to this recipe. It makes a nice binder and gives it a really "appley" flavor.

I use a mixture of tart and sweet apples. All need to be ones that hold up well to baking (Cortland, Granny Smith, Macintosh, Gala, Braburn or Honey Crisp) The apples will affect the flavor and texture more than anything else.

Bother to buy whole nutmeg and use a plane grater to grate it.

Don't skip the salt.

Butter, not margerine, goes without saying... I double the crunch topping and paint the lattice with heavy cream or a beaten egg first so it will stick to the crust better.

Microformatting by hRecipe.
Posted on October 18, 2010 and filed under Desserts.

Pecan Pie

Recipe: Pecan Pie

Summary: You meet some of the best people through your children. That's how I met Lucia Faust.  Her kids were friends with my kids.  She is the epitome of "Lovely". It's been fun to reconnect with her and share good recipes. Thanks for this recipe, Lucia. Ben thanks you, too.

Ingredients

  • 2 cups Gold Medal flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 scant cup crisco
  • ¼ cup ice water
  • 4 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1 ½ cups light Karo syrup
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¾ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup melted and cooled butter
  • 1½ cups pecans

Instructions

  1. Turn oven temperature to 450 degrees.
  2. Sift together flour and salt.
  3. Cut in shortening with knives or pastry blender. When well blended add about ¼ cup ice water and mix together until dough holds together.
  4. Roll crust on slightly floured board turning as necessary. Roll only as much as needed to make crust the thickness and size you want.
  5. Combine eggs, vanilla, syrup, salt and sugar. Mix well.
  6. When very well blended add ¼ cup melted and cooled butter and mix well.
  7. Spread pecans in a prepared, unbaked pie crust. Pour the above mixture into pan and bake for 15 minutes at 425º then turn down oven to 350º and finish baking.
  8. Should take almost one hour. You can protect the crust w/ foil or a pie ring.
Microformatting by hRecipe.
Posted on October 15, 2010 and filed under Desserts.