Sunday, November 27, 2011

Every Day is Apple Pie Day

February is National Pie Month.
And May 13 is National Apple Pie Day.
But the holidays seem to be the time we most associate with these comforting baked goods.  Here is a little twist on the grandmommy of all pies, apple.

Mom's Sassiest Apple Pie recipe - Apple, Maple, Cheddar 

Makes: 8 servings  
Prep: 30 minutes
Bake: 1 hour
Cool: 1 hour

  • Pastry for a Double-Crust Pie
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • cups thinly sliced peeled apples (such as Jonathan or Macintosh) (5 medium)
  • 1-1/2 cups shredded white cheddar cheese (6 ounces)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • tablespoon whipping cream
  • tablespoons maple syrup
  • 1/4 cup toasted chopped pecans (optional)

  1. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. Prepare Pastry for a Double-Crust Pie. On a lightly floured surface, slightly flatten one portion of dough. Roll dough from center to edge into a 12-inch circle. Wrap pastry circle around rolling pin; unroll into a 9-inch pie pan or plate. Ease pastry into pie pan without stretching it; set aside.
  2. For filling, in a large bowl, stir together sugar, flour, cinnamon, and salt. Add apples; toss gently to coat. Add cheese and the 1/4 cup maple syrup; toss gently to combine. Transfer filling to pastry-lined pie pan. Drizzle with cream.
  3. Trim pastry even with edge of pie pan. Roll the remaining dough into a 12-inch circle. Cut slits in pastry to allow steam to escape. Place pastry circle on filling; trim pastry to 1/2 inch beyond edge of pie pan. Fold top pastry edge under bottom pastry. Crimp edge as desired. Cover edge of pie with foil to prevent overbrowning.
  4. Bake in the preheated oven for 40 minutes. Remove foil. Bake about 20 minutes more or until apples are tender and pastry is golden brown. Transfer to a wire rack. Brush with the 2 tablespoons maple syrup. If desired, sprinkle with pecans. Cool for 1 hour. Serve slightly warm. Makes 8 servings.

Pastry for a Double-Crust Pie: In a large bowl, stir together 2-1/2 cups all-purpose flour and 1 teaspoon salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in 1/2 cup shortening and 1/4 cup butter, cut up, or shortening until pieces are pea size. Sprinkle 1 tablespoon ice water over part of the flour mixture; toss gently with a fork. Push moistened dough to side of bowl. Repeat with additional ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time (1/2 to 2/3 cup total), until all of the flour mixture is moistened. Gather mixture into a ball, kneading gently until it holds together. Divide dough in half. Shape each portion into a ball.

(taken from a variety of sources including Better Homes & Gardens and Country Living)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Insuring the Perfect Carrot Loaf

In uncertain times it is natural to seek out things we can count on.  We often turn to nostalgia as it offers a level of comfort like no other.  Here is something that fits the bill to a "T."

In 1924 the Metropolitan Insurance Company of New York published its popular Metropolitan Cook Book.  Here is a recipe representative of that 'simpler time'.

Carrot Loaf

This 1924 ditty by Fred Waring & The Pennsylvanians
is entitled "Memory Lane"
  • 1 1/2 c ground raw carrots
  • 1 c boiled rice
  • 1 c ground peanuts
  • 1 egg
  • salt, pepper
  • 2 tbsp red or green peppers
  • 3 tbsp minced bacon or other fat
  • 1 tbsp onion juice
  • 1/2 tsp mustard

Mix ingredients in order and bake the loaf in a moderate oven 1 hour. Serve with tomato sauce if desired.

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