Tuesday, February 18, 2014

apple pie morning

Woke up to the most astonishing grey-blue light (actual color in the photos, no white balance manipulation) and yet more of the white stuff. The flakes were so big they looked like feathers being shaken down out of the sky.

This was a lucky break for Secondo, because it was apple pie contest day at school today, and he got home way too late from a ski day yesterday to bake.

More snow = delayed school opening = just enough time to make an apple pie.

You know I don't toot my own horn that often where cooking is concerned, but I make one heck of a good apple pie. The recipe is "Mile High Apple Pie" from Farmhouse Cookbook by Susan Hermann Loomis. I can't reproduce it here for copyright reasons, but I can tell you two guaranteed-success secrets for a fantabulous apple pie:

  1. Use several varieties of cooking apples (and never Red Delicious) for a more complex texture and taste; and
  2. Scatter little dabs of butter, about one or two tablespoons worth, on your apple pie mixture before you put the top crust on, because everything is better with a little more butter.
Secondo managed to get a pie in and out of the oven in time, with maybe a little help from me in cleaning and cutting the apples. Another huge help was the pie crust compliments of Mr. Pillsbury Dough Boy.

Why an apple pie contest? Because it is National FFA Week, and that is just one of the events their high school chapter, led by Primo, dreamed up. Secondo's pie won in a landslide, and the favor-currying decoration on the top was just one of the reasons. It really is a tremendous recipe.

Our kitchen counter currently features a wide assortment of fruits and vegetables for the "Know Your Produce" contest tomorrow. It was supposed to be a corn-shucking contest, but my farm boy wasn't aware that whole corn is seasonal. For all he understands about growing food, he has been raised in a world where strawberries are readily available year-round. It's no surprise that he assumed corn on the cob was as well. The produce contest is a punt.

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