Wednesday, October 27, 2010

The review is in...

Last weekend I baked a Washington Apple Pie for my sorority sister from Seattle. She is possibly the nicest person I have ever met so when asked to bake her a pie that reminds her of home, I was more than happy to. I asked her to write me a review and here it is, straight from Matiland to you.

"My review of Katie's Pie: The apple pie that Katie made for me was absolutely delicious. I am from Washington State and I requested the apple pie because I missed my mommy who makes amazing pies. Katie managed to make a pie that was every bit as good as any that my mom has made. The personal touch of the heart on the top was perfect. It was sooo yummy :)"

Well there ya have it, folks, I guess it was good. I never did have a piece; had I, the pie never would have made it successfully across campus.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Meringue, please

The last pie I made was a Washington Apple Pie made with granny smith apples for one of my fellow Kappas. The jury is still out on that one, but I think the review is going to be a good one. In the meantime, I will share with you my interesting lemon meringue story.

Lemon Meringue is one of my favorite pies, hands down. I have never once even attempted to bake one. The sound of it is just very daunting. Everyone says how hard it will be so I have simply steered clear. That is,until now. I was determined today to conquer my pie fear, which, overall, I would say that I did.

I'll preface by saying, I am a die hard Packers fan. So, for those who don't know, tonight was/is (I'm currently watching it) the Packers-Vikings game, so kinda a big deal. I made the crust, in the comfort of my dorm room, right in front of the TV. Based on how it all mixed up, I'd say the crust is gonna be awesome. I prebaked the crust, but didn't quite follow directions. I didn't have aluminum foil so I didn't weigh it down; thus, the crust came out of the oven looking a little sad. Oh well, as long as it tastes good.

The lemon filling, in my opinion, and that of my helper Claire, is just as it should be. The funny looking crust and filling is sitting nicely in the fridge while I watch the end of the game. Stay tuned for an update of the true challenge of this pie...the meringue, along with a taste review and pretty pretty pictures. In the meantime, GO, PACK, GO!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

OMG Did you hear?!?

Apparently, there is an American Pie Council. Now, this is a legit, fancy website and everything. The council, referred to as APC, is "the only organization committed to preserving America's heritage and promoting Americans' love affair with pie." This is a pretty neat organization. National Pie day is January 23, not to be confused with National Pi day, March 14, 3.14. They host a national championship once a year! The chances of me becoming a member are rather high indeed, if only I wasn't a poor college student and had the money to pay the $40 fee. Hint hint, nudge nudge mama: I know you are reading this. The APC just made my day!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Pie Fact #1

Did you know that in the 19th Century, fruit pies were common breakfast items?? Well, it's true. And if you are me, they are still common breakfast items. The best thing about baking a pie is having it for breakfast the next day. Why, I even had a slice of my delicious pear apple pie before heading off to class this morning. According to my source,, fruit pies were "considered part of a good hearty meal before a hard day's work." I would have to agree with this statement. Happy Pie!

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Snickers Brownie Pie

This pie is all in the title. With a graham cracker crust, which I did make from scratch (snaps for me!), a layer of delicious brownie, a layer of cut-up Snickers bars and topped with a peanut butter whipped cream mix. Not too difficult a recipe, but my friend Grace and I definitely improvised some.

For starters, I don't have a double boiler, which, of course, was needed to melt chocolate. So we made a make-shift one. It got the job done.

Then came time to whip the cream. I, of course, didn't think about the fact that in order to have whipped cream, one must whip it. I don't own a wisk or a mixer. Clearly, not the seasoned baker you may have thought I was. I whipped it by hand using a fork. Surprisingly enough, it worked!!! And didn't take forever. Yay, me!

The reviews are in and this pie is amazing. I wouldn't call it the best pie ever, but it is pretty good. I wasn't a fan of the peanut butter topping. I think because I am not a fan of cream cheese and since I know it is in the topping, I can definitely taste it more than one would think. The graham cracker crust was so fantastic!!!!

I think I am all pied out for a couple days, but there is a Washington
Granny Smith Apple pie sometime in my future for one of my Kappa sisters from Seattle. Until then, happy pie!

Five-Spice Pear Apple Pie

Not to toot my own horn or anything, but I think I'm getting pretty good at this whole pie thing. In the span of an afternoon, I made not one...but two delicious pies. The first, a pear apple pie. By far one of the prettiest pies I have ever made. I read the recipe for the crust correctly this time, not adding too much sugar. It rolled our wonderfully and browned perfectly.

The recipe called for a crumb topping. I, however, opted for a top crust, which, if I do say so myself, was a good call.

I knew the crust was perfect when I made the first cut into it. The perfect combination of flaky and doughy. Man, that crust is what made the pie absolutely perfect! I am very much looking forward to my next double crust pie!!!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Vid and Annie's Fresh Raspberry Crumb Pie

My plan on Tuesday was to make a delicious all strawberry pie. I was very excited and headed over to the grocery store to get the berries necessary. Unfortunately, they didn't have any strawberries. Raspberries, however, were plentiful and surprisingly inexpensive. As a result, I made an all raspberry pie instead.

I made the crust from scratch for the first time ever in my life. It didn't turn out half bad. I did realize though, I mixed in 1 1/2 cups of sugar instead of only 1 1/2 tablespoons. Oops. The crust was a little sweet but still very delicious.

Then I mixed the filling. Apparently, Tuesday was not my day as far as reading the recipe goes. I added in 2 tablespoons of fresh lemon juice instead of 2 teaspoons. That oopsy I claim as not my fault. The tablespoon measurer was labeled with "T." I'm used to seeing "Tsp." Easy confusion; I am not a dumb as you may think.

Besides the two slight changes, it turned out pretty well. I got rave reviews from my wonderful roomies ,which is always a plus.

Tomorrow I am baking two pies. One will be a pear-apple to share with my wonderful roomies after we eat a "fancy" dinner-aka not eat at the dining hall or order pizza. The other pie, which I am SUPER stoked for, is going to be a snickers brownie pie. I'm making that with a friend and there is no way I am sharing it with anyone else.

Never Underestimate the Power of Pie

I would like to say that I have always been a pie person, however, that's not true. I used to hate pie. As far as desserts go, I was always a cake and ice cream girl, but not together. The cake was, and is, always lemon cake with lemon icing, the kind my Baba would always bake for my birthday. The ice cream was always either vanilla, french vanilla or rainbow sherbert. I would eat the occasional pie, as long as it was blueberry, but I wouldn't have considered myself a fan.
Sometime in high school, I realized the power pie holds over everyone. Pies make everyone happy. I, along with my mama, am a firm believer that pie can heal all wounds. When my dad has his knee replaced, my mama baked him a pie. When our close family friend fought breast cancer, we baked her a bunch of pies. When I had shoulder surgery, I got a pie. And when boys are stupid, a pie will always do the trick.
I'm a junior in college with more free time than you'd think. So what do I do? I bake pies. Why? Just cause. Pies are fun and delicious and is something that is mine, no one else's, just mine. As chance to think and create. "Operation Pie" began about two weeks ago. My mother dearest sent yours truly a pie recipe book, full of 300 different pie recipes. So this, my friends, is my documentation of all things pie. Now, I'm not going to promise I will bake all 300 hundred pies in the book. I'm very picky and probably don't even want to think about half the pies in the book. But, with the help of my friends (I can't eat all this pie by myself!) I hope to make a dent in the book but the end of the school year.

Wish me luck!