Pear Pie–Needs Some Adjustments

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Can you see the hidden shapes on top of the crust? I attempted to cut the vent holes with the same shape, but they stretched and lost their awesome.

I used the fantastic apple pie recipe I found online and it is almost perfect. But instead of apples I used pears from our farm. I forgot that I decreased the temperature of the oven the first time I used this recipe. So…my crust was well done and my fruit was still a little hard.

We’ll see what my coworkers think.of it today. I’m nervous and not entirely thrilled that I made such a silly irrevocable mistake.
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Update
My coworkers made it disappear easily during my eight hour work shift. Everyone agreed the crust and flavor was great.

They made some legit recommendations about a future fix. First, being if I have particularly hard fruits, I could cook them down in a sauce pan with the sugar to help soften them up.
Second, they also agreed that 375°F was high for pie and I should lower the temp.
I also hope to cut up my pear chunks into more even sizes. I think the larger pieces were the undercooked ones.

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What’s Up with Kat

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Since I’ve been back from Spain I have been trying to get my rhythm. Not too hard, but it does take time.
I tried to save the weakest chick of nine thar hatched (just before I got home). Sadly, Mr. Chicklet didn’t make it but we had some happy times before he passed.

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Been cooking with my girl. I assisted with cake decorating for a sports themed baby shower. What is even better is I didn’t mess up the cake. I didn’t do the fancy writing but icing that sucker was a task in itself!

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Picked some fresh strawberries, mashed and mixed them to make strawberry pies. Folks at work made the one pie disappear in under 30 minutes. Maybe more pie next time.

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My poppies and tiger lilies are blooming. It makes the backyard look super jolly!

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Made a fruit tart for some friends with my girl and now that I know how easy it is I really want to do one! Maybe I can borrow her tart pan sometime :-)

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We also purchased a wee soft shell turtle. We plan on letting him grow bigger and releasing him into our backyard pond. There are some sliders in there now and frogs and I don’t want Jubal to be bullied by the other creatures in the pond.

Those are the highlights of the last couple of weeks.
We have been enjoying hot days but not the too stinking hot days we are used to in June. Such a relief after last year’s scorcher.

Day 263: Dessert Improv

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Improvision is my greatest strength in cooking and my greatest weakness in baking.

I am not experienced enough to play with baking ingredients. So most of the time I have to force myself to follow the recipe.

The last few nights, Kit had gotten home and after eating supper asked what I had mmde for dinner.
He didn’t fuss when I told him I didn’t make dessert but he was bummed and I could tell.

Enter the improvised dessert. I wanted to use the Graham cracker crusts I bought a week before. Luckily,  I had some dried cranberries too. I bought a box of banana cream pudding and chopped up frozen banana pieces that I had squirreled in the freezer.

Even though it was a little random and last minute it turned out pretty decent. The real banana bits helped trick my taste buds because I hate a really fake banana flavor.

Have you ever picked out flavors and thrown them together?

Did it work? Did it flop?

Day 228: Pumpkin for Your Face

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Here were the pumpkin pies I made for Thanksgiving! They were especially delicious because I used pumpkin that Kit and I canned earlier this year. So awesome!

We still have a few more cans of pumpkin left that I may end up making pumpkin bread with.

I made my own crust too. Which is not as hard as people make it sound. It is just more time consuming.

My pie crust recipe is nothing special.

Throw a few ice cubes into a big measuring cup with about 1 cup of water in it.

In a bowl, mix 2 cups all purpose flour with 1 tsp salt and 2/3 cup shortening/lard using a pastry blender (much easier to buy this tool than using a knife and fork).

Once combined, start adding 1 TBSP ice water at a time until the mixture forms a ball. You will add 6-8 TBSP.

Divide ball in half and roll each one out to create a top and bottom crust.

The trick? I add a little extra kick to my homemade crusts. If for a sweet pie, I add 1/3 cup of brown sugar and cinnamon–if it will compliment the pie.

Savory crust for quiches, I add a touch more salt and garlic powder.

Adding a little something to your crust will ensure it won’t be completely bland. It will enhance the flavors of the dish.

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Do you like my pumpkin cut outs? I thought they looked fancy like a magazine. Same crust recipe, I let my pies cook a bit so the cut outs wouldn’t sink into the pie custard.

Day 184: Snow White Pie

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Please notice my beautiful lattice crust. Kit helped me.

Okay, this blog has very little to do with Snow White except the fact that she does not abide by even the most lax of health standards while baking apple pie from scratch.

There are no bird feet nor droppings in my pie!

We found an apple tree on our property and Kit believes it might be a wine sap variety.
Red peel, sweet and wonderful to bake with too!

I have a ton more apples I need to put up and freeze. This has been an awesome year for apples!

How did it do after baking?

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Perfectly!!
The original recipe said to bake it for an hour on 375, which was way too high.

It tasted even better than it looks. I made another apple pie (not quite as pretty) right afterwords because Kit loved it so much. There is one piece left in the fridge.

I have written down and will keep this pie recipe for sure.

I did use coconut oil for the crusts. It worked very well because it was partially solidified. This is definitely key, much like butter or lard having this element cool or cold will make for a more malleable crust.

Day 162: Sister Pie

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My sister had her birthday at the end of Septmber too and I loaded her down with Hello Kitty gear and a pie.

This is an apple peach cinnamon pie.
I’m not big on pie but my parents and sister said it was the bomb.

I was running short on time so I used canned pie filling (I felt bad) but I made up for it by making my own crusts.

I used two different recipes for the two crusts. The bottom used lard but it was last of my lard so I improvised and used coconut oil for the lattice top.

I have never done a lattice top before…it was challenging. I want to do a true woven lattice next time.
I kinda want to make a snow white apple pie….just once.