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Wednesday, July 24, 2013

pies for sale

In June I booked my first pie job for a wedding.  Pies seem to be the new thing for weddings and I could not agree more with this fabulous idea!  Pies are so juicy and full of flavor and there are so many good pies out there to choose from.  My pie job consisted of making 6 apple pies.  One might think this a simple little task but I realized that making 6 pies can take a long time when you are making every bit from scratch (other than growing the apples)!

Prior to even taking on the job I made 4 small tester pies for the couple to taste, this in itself was an experiment as I had never actually made 2 of the pies that they requested.  So I had to make testers for my tester!  Raspberry pie, strawberry-rhubarb pie, apple pie and blueberry pie were the choices so I went to work.  The blueberry pie was decent and the strawberry-rhubarb pie was fine and I have made apple pie a hundred times so felt confident about that,  it was the raspberry pie that I had trouble with.  I was not pleased with the first tester recipe for me to taste so I used a different recipe for them and I am pretty sure it was not a hit (of course later that week I made up my own recipe and it was just perfect!).  So go figure the pie that they liked the best and asked me to make was my grandma's apple pie recipe - which like I said I had made many times before.  It is super simple and always delicious.

I split the pie making up into a couple of days because I thought it would be a little easier with the babies. Making the pie crusts was the hardest and most technical part of it all!  It was a very hot week and keeping my kitchen cool seemed next to impossible, so the crusts kept going in and out of the fridge to keep them cool.  And the trick with pie crust is certainly keeping everything cool!  By the end of the pie making I decided it took me somewhere between 6-7 hours to hand make all the crusts, peel all the apples, roll out the crusts, put in the filling and then do the lattice crust on top!

Overall it was a good challenge and we had lots of fun in the kitchen - my boys were excellent amusement and just too precious!  It sounds like the pies were a hit and thoroughly enjoyed at the wedding, but I don't think I will be becoming a professional pie baker anytime soon!

For those of you who might be interested here is my grandma's apple pie recipe:

Grandma Lil’s Apple Pie

1 pie crust
4-5 large granny smith apples                                 
 1-2 tsp. cinnamon
¾ cups sugar                                                                    
6 Tablespoons cold butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees.

Peel and slice apples very thin.  Mix ½  cup sugar with cinnamon and mix with apples in a bowl.  Dump apples into pie shell and mix pieces of butter throughout the apples.  Sprinkle extra sugar and cinnamon on top (optional).  Bake at 400 for 15 minutes and then reduce heat to 325 and bake 45 minutes or until apples look soft.  Cool and serve w/ a dollop of whipped cream or some vanilla ice cream…enjoy J

*For a topping you can just use a second shell to cover or weave strips over and under to create lattice cover.  For pie crust I usually make an all-butter pie crust with butter, salt and flour.  Sometimes a teaspoon of sugar.