Thursday, March 17, 2011

Easy as pie (pun intended ;-)

Several of you have requested that I share my pie-making technique. I finally took pictures of the process, so I can do that now. :-)

I grew up watching my mom make pies, and after I married my husband, I watched my mother-in-law make them too. But I really had no pie-making skills.

There were several reasons for that....

1) I am lazy. Plain and simple.
2) I was scared of messing up.
3) I am lazy. (Oh wait, did I already mention that?)

That about covers it though....I was lazy and scared. Once I buckled down and tried it a few times, I realized how simple it really was.
(And how rewarding! Nothin' better than a homemade pie....)

The recipe I use comes from one of my favorite recipe sources--Taste of Home. While the Taste of Home recipes are not fancy, they are easy and satisfying. They are my "go-to" recipes for basic foods. And pie crust is one of those.....

I DID have to practice several (even many) times to get the crust perfect. Now that I have the proper techniques memorized and understand the correct texture of the dough, I never have an issue. Make sure you don't give up after the first--or even second--time you try it!

Here is the recipe....

Pastry for Double-Crust

2 cups all-purpose flour
3/4 t. salt
2/3 cup shortening
6 to 7 T. cold water

1. In a bowl, combine flour and salt; cut in the shortening until crumbly.

2. Gradually add water, tossing with a fork until dough forms a ball.

3. Roll out pastry to fit a 9-in or 10-in pie plate. Transfer pastry to pie plate. Trim pastry to 1/2 in beyond edge of pie plate; flute edges.

4. Fill or bake shell according to directions.

*To make a banana cream pie, such as is pictured below, line the shell with foil. Bake at 450 degrees for 8 minutes. Remove foil; bake 5-6 minutes longer or until light golden brown.
Cool on a wire rack.

Meanwhile, mix 1 large box of instant vanilla pudding according to box instructions for pie filling. Line cooled pie crust with banana slices, then pour pudding mixture into pie shell and put additional banana slices on top for garnish.
Chill for 1 hour and then cover pie with whipped topping. Enjoy!

Do you feel....LUCKY?

I have neglected my poor little food blog for the past month......
but that does not mean that I have not been cooking!
I have lots of recipes to share with you (complete with pictures, of course!) and I will posting them rapidly. :-)

But today, we are all about Irish food.....

Last year, I decided to go all traditional on my family and I made a corned beef roast and cooked cabbage, with soda bread on the side. They were NOT FANS.

So this year I am going back to the old standby--Reuben sandwiches. Except we use turkey in our family because: 1) it is healthier and 2) it tastes better (IMO). And I am trying my hand at making my own sauerkraut, due to inspiration from an episode of Diners, Drive-ins and Dives. I will let you know how that turns out.....stand by!

Maybe next year I will just stick with a "GREEN" menu.......
my green enchiladas
cabbage and broccoli
and grasshopper pie for dessert. ;-)
What do you think?