Tag Archives: Pie

Strawberry Season

Strawberry season for us in New England is a few weeks away.

There really is something about sitting in a field full of strawberry plants, the sun shining down on your face, the birds singing and the smell of life in the air.

I’ve always loved quiet moments, those moments you smile to yourself because you just know they’re special. Like when the sun shines down at a certain angle and you swear you see angels coming down from heaven.

Or when you smell lilacs in the air or when you hear waves lapping on the shore, those simple pleasures in life that so many of us take for granted.

Do me a favor and go strawberry picking this year. Go when there’s not a lot of people, when your family will have a row to yourselves. Sit or squat down among the berries. Feel the warmth of the sun and listen to the birds up above, watch the wind blow the leaves all around and pick those bright red juicy strawberries.

Maybe try one of these recipes with your bounty:

Strawberry Skillet Cake

Strawberry Pie

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

Strawberry Lemonade

French Strawberry Cake

Jodi xo

 

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Perfect Peach Pie

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A perfect Saturday afternoon at the orchard provided us with plenty of peaches. We picked both yellow and white peaches and after careful consideration we have decided that white peaches are superior to yellow. Since variety is the spice of life, they both make an appearance in this fresh fruit pie.

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With the windows open and the cooler breezes blowing, the peaches are peeled and sliced.

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As the crows make their presence known in the large pine in the backyard, the crust is prepared while the ground spices and a little lemon juice mingle with the peaches.

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The final step before blanketing the speckled filling is placing cold and cubed butter all over the top.

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With fluted edges and slits for steam to escape, we are now ready to bake this beauty.

After close to an hour in the oven, the pie emerges with a golden brown crust and the scents of summer.

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Perfect Peach Pie

adapted from Joy the Baker

  • 8 peaches, peeled and cut from the core
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
  • pinch of salt
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter, cold and cubed
  • double pie crust

Preheat oven to 400F.

Peel and slice peaches. Place into a large bowl. In another bowl, whisk together flour, cornstarch, sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and salt. Sprinkle over peaches and mix to coat. Add lemon juice and stir again. Let sit while preparing pie crust.

Line pie plate with crust. Pour peach filling into plate and dot with butter. Place remaining pie crust over top, making sure to make slits for the steam to escape.

Bake for 45-55 minutes until golden brown and juices are bubbly.

Let cool on a wire rack for an hour before slicing, as hard as that is!

 

 

Coconut Cream Pie

IMG_2178I can be a bit of an overachiever. Last night, I made homemade tortillas for our chicken quesadilla dinner. Then as requested by a certain awesome kid, a spinach smoothie. Then I made a coconut cream pie.

After all those dishes and the counter space needed to do these tasks, the kitchen became a nightmare.

IMG_2167Marcy didn’t mind it though. She was hoping for some food to fall to the ground where she could clean it up for me, such a sweet pup.

The first task when making a pie is deciding on the crust. This time, I went with my tried and true basic pie crust. You will only need half the recipe, so save the other half for another day, another pie.

IMG_2160We have to blind bake this crust. Poke some holes in the bottom, line it with beans or baking weights and bake for about a half hour at 400F, removing the beans during the last 10 minutes.

While that’s in the oven, we can start on the filling. Coconut milk, whole milk and egg yolks are the basis for the filling, along with some cornstarch to thicken and a touch of sugar and butter. Toasted sweetened shredded coconut adds texture to the filling.

IMG_2178When all the elements come together, the pie needs to be chilled for at least 4 hours for the filling to set up (no jiggling.) Then the whipped cream can be made. One tip about making whipped cream: chill the bowl and the whisker. This will greatly speed up the process.

We clean while we wait.

IMG_2170Much better.

IMG_2182Now we can enjoy the fruits of our labor.

Coconut Cream Pie

  • 1/2 basic pie crust, blind baked
  • 1 1/2 cups coconut milk
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 3 large egg yolks, beaten
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 3/4 cup sweetened shredded coconut, toasted

Topping

  • 1/2 cup heavy cream
  • 2 teaspoons confectioners’ sugar

Combine coconut milk and milk in a medium saucepan. Bring to a simmer over medium heat. Remove from heat and stir in sugar until dissolved.

Combine 1/2 cup milk mixture with cornstarch and stir until smooth. Temper egg yolks with another 1/2 cup milk mixture, stirring into the egg yolks in a steady stream until tempered. Add salt.

Add both the cornstarch mixture and the yolk mixture back into the saucepan. Return to heat and cook, whisking constantly until it comes to a boil.

Reduce heat to low and continue cooking until thick, about 2 minutes.

Remove from heat and stir in butter and vanilla. Reserve 1/4 cup toasted coconut and fold in the remaining 1/2 cup into the filling.

Pour into pie shell. Place a piece of plastic wrap directly on the surface to prevent a skin from forming. Refrigerate at least 4 hours.

When ready to serve, Make whipped cream and dollop onto pie. Sprinkle with coconut.

Enjoy :)

 

Key Lime Pie

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Key lime pie originated in Key West, Florida back in the late 19th century. Key limes are more tart and much smaller than the usual limes we’re used to seeing. Spring is the season to seek out key limes in the grocery stores. And that’s just what I did.

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This recipe uses both the zest and the juice from these little gems. When the acidic juice is combined with sweetened condensed milk it creates a reaction that naturally thickens the mixture.

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We need to decide on our crust now. How about a graham cracker crust? Yes please.

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The key lime zest in the filling creates a speckled surface for the whipped cream topping. A meringue topping is also an option.

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This pie is tart and citrusy. The whipped cream adds just the right amount of sweetness and the graham cracker crust lends the perfect crunch.

Key Lime Pie

(recipe from united states of pie by adrienne kane)

  • 3 egg yolks
  • 1 14 oz. can of sweetened condensed milk
  • pinch of salt
  • 1/2 cup key lime juice (from 10-12 key limes)
  • 2 teaspoons grated lime zest (from 6-8 key limes)

Topping

  • 3/4 cup heavy cream
  • 1 tablespoon confectioners’ sugar

Preheat oven to 350F. Beat egg yolks on high until fluffy. Gradually add sweetened condensed milk. (3-5 minutes) Add salt, juice and zest. Beat 30 seconds. Pour into crust. Bake 10-12 minutes. Remove from oven and place on a wire rack until cool. Cover and refrigerate. Top with whipped cream. Enjoy :)

Graham Cracker Crust

  • 1 sleeve of graham crackers
  • 2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 5 tablespoons butter melted

Preheat oven 350F. Mix until evenly distributed. Pour into pie plate and press down evenly over bottom of plate and up the sides. Bake 8-10 minutes.

 

Lemon Meringue Pie

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I am a believer that everything happens for a reason and that is because God has a plan already laid out for each and every one of us.  We need to listen to our hearts in order to know what our purpose in life is. That inner voice is God. Listen.

As insignificant as it may seem, my passion and purpose in life is creating nourishing meals for my family. I put my heart into everything I make. The love I feel for them goes into each and every meal and nourishes them even more than the actual vitamins and minerals. My intentions and my hopes go into the preparation of each fork and spoonful.

So as simple as it might be, this Lemon Meringue Pie is a symbol. A symbol of my love, of my purpose in life, of The Creator’s plans for me.

 

Here is a recipe for an amazing pie that has to cool before you can eat it, as hard as that is, it’s completely worth it.

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About a year ago, we gained a new co-worker at my place of work. Deb has become a great friend to me in that time. She is hilarious, generous, kindhearted and authentic.

It is thanks to her that you see this recipe, since she brought in her very last piece of Lemon Meringue Pie for me to try. It was amazing and I had to make it myself.

Lemon Meringue Pie

Recipe from All Recipes

  • 1 cup sugar
  • 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
  • 2 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 1/2 cups water
  • 2 lemons, juiced and zested
  • 2 tablespoons butter
  • 4 egg yolks, beaten
  • 1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
  • 4 egg whites
  • 6 tablespoons sugar

Preheat oven to 350F. Make your crust and bake until browned, about 20 minutes.

In a medium saucepan, whisk together first four ingredients. Add water, zest and juice of lemons. Cook over medium high heat, stirring frequently, until mixture comes to a boil. Stir in butter until melted.

Place egg yolks in a small bowl and gradually whisk in 1/2 cup of the hot sugar mixture. Whisk egg mixture back into remaining sugar mixture. Bring to a boil and continue to cook while stirring constantly until thick. Remove from heat and pour into baked crust.

In a large glass or metal bowl, whip egg whites until foamy. Add the 6 tablespoons gradually and continue to whip until stiff peaks form. I used an electric mixer to save on time. Spread meringue over pie, sealing the edges at the crust.

Bake in the 350F oven for 15-20 minutes or until meringue is golden brown.

 

It also helps to have the best and freshest ingredients.  These are eggs from a friend down the road.

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Freshly Picked Cherries = Cherry Pie

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Saturday. It’s a wonderful day. It’s a day full of possibilities. It’s a perfect day for picking. Cherries are in season here in Connecticut and Belltown Hill Orchards is the only orchard in the state that you can pick-your-own.

We chose mostly Bing cherries with a few Rainier thrown in for color.

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These cherries were soaking up the sun just hours before they were soaking up sugar for our pie filling. You can’t get more homemade or wholesome than that.

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Ethan enjoyed helping find the choice plump cherries.

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I found my fair share and enjoyed being enveloped by the amazing fruit trees.

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The cherries are cut in half and pitted before being covered with sugar, lemon juice and a bit of cornstarch for fullness.

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You could totally use a store bought crust but you might as well go all out and really make this pie shine.

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I used a combination of my standby crust and a recipe I found from Martha.

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I chose to use a lattice top and some dots on the side to cover up those messy edges.

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This was my first cherry pie, both eaten and made.

It was better than I thought it would be.

Cherry Pie

  • 4 cups fresh cherries, pitted and sliced in half
  • 2 Tbs. cornstarch
  • 2 Tbs. lemon juice
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • pinch of salt
  • Pie crust
  • 1 egg and 1 Tbs. water for an egg wash
  • 1 Tbs. sugar for sprinkling

Combine the cherries, cornstarch, lemon juice, sugar and salt in a bowl.  Line the pie plate with pie dough. Pour cherry filling and cover with your choice of full pie crust or lattice work. Combine egg and water and brush on pie crust, sprinkling with sugar. Bake at 400F for 50-60 minutes.

Enjoy :)

Blue Ribbon Apple Pie

Last year, I won a blue ribbon for this apple pie.

The recipe is adapted from my high school culinary teacher, Mrs. Carlisle.

Start with her pie dough.

Of course, you have to pick your own apples:

Peel, core and slice about 10 medium sized apples. In a bowl, combine them with 3/4 cup sugar, 1 Tbs. cinnamon and 1/4 tsp. nutmeg. Let the apples mingle with the sugar and spice.

Arrange the slices on top of the pie dough in the dish like this, if you have those OCD tendancies like me or just pile them in ;)

Cut 1 Tbs. butter or margarine into small cubes and dot the top of the apples.

Place the second pie dough on top of the buttered apple slices and seal the edges. You can get decorative or just use a fork. Make sure to cut slits or holes in the top to let the steam escape.

Bake in a 425F degree oven for 50-60 minutes until golden brown and juices are bubbly. If at all possible, let cool for a half hour. Slice and enjoy.

The plumpest blueberries there ever were…

Blueberries

I don’t know what it is about pyo farms that I love so much. Yesterday, we went to my favorite farm…Belltown Hill Orchards. It’s a third generation family owned farm of about 155 acres. They have pick-your-own produce from June to late October. My husband, son and I picked about 7 lbs of blueberries with wide smiles and happy bellies. The blueberries are so plump and juicy; warmed by the sun, they really are the best I’ve ever had.

We drove up a steep hill to get to where the blueberry bushes were, parked the car and stepped out into blazing sun. It was an 85 degree day but we brought our sunglasses and breathed in the enticing scent of berries in the air. We each picked up a black, plastic bucket that holds about 4 lbs of the sun ripened berries.

There was a tractor drawn wagon waiting for us to board. We hopped on and took the lovely slow and short trip to the picking bushes. There were nets enclosing the berry bushes to keep the critters out with a few tied up to allow the guests in. It wasn’t a very busy day so we had many rows to ourselves. Ethan was great at crouching down to find the secret hiding places of the best berries that others had overlooked. Some of them as big as quarters. We probably spent a good 45 minutes picking and by the end we were ready for those sweet blueberry treats that would be constructed back home in our air conditioned kitchen.

Tom declared that we had to have a blueberry pie. This has been a family tradition for the past few years. We go picking, whether it’s berries or apples, then immediately upon arriving home, we prepare the mouth watering crust and then the sweet and cinnamon spiced filling.

Here is the recipe that has been tweaked and adapted over the years. We prefer it cold, so it’s best after it’s been cooled on a rack and then popped in the fridge for a bit.

Best Blueberry Pie

Heat oven to 425F. Prepare your crust (you can use a store bought one for convenience). Line a pie plate with one layer.

Mix sugar, flour and cinnamon. Stir in blueberries. Empty into the pastry lined pie plate. Sprinkle with lemon and cubed butter.

Cover with top crust and pinch edges to seal. Poke holes to let steam escape. Bake until golden and juice begins to bubble through. About 35-40 minutes.

Enjoy!

Homemade Chicken Pie {made with love}

chicken pieMy son has had some trepidation about the launch of this blog. His biggest gripe, “You can’t just give all your best recipes away for free!” I let him in on a little secret, the reason they taste so superior to him is because of the love I bake right into them, especially for him. He seemed to accept this theory of mine. I explained to him that recipes are all over the internet and that anyone can find just about anything they are searching for. But when he saw the title of this post, his exact words were, “How dare you?!”  I hope he will feel nostalgic about his momma’s cooking when he is older :)

When my husband and I were just starting out, I would make the Bisquick recipe for chicken pot pie. I think it’s still right on the back of the box. We always liked the idea of a balanced meal in one dish. Over the years I have tried many chicken pot pie recipes but this is THE one. I make this probably three times per month. It is and will always be one of my “signature dishes.” I hope it becomes one of your family’s favorites as well.

I cooked a whole chicken yesterday and used about 2 and half cups for this pie. You could cook up some chicken breasts or use one of those rotisserie chickens at the grocery store. Turkey also works well.

Homemade Chicken Pie

Print Homemade Chicken Pie Recipe

2-3 cups cooked chicken, chopped

1/4 cup onion, chopped

1 1/2 cups carrots, chopped

1 1/2 cups potatoes, chopped

1 stalk of celery, chopped

1/4 cup frozen peas

2 pie crusts

1 cup chicken broth

2/3 cup skim milk

4 Tbs. butter or margarine

4 Tbs. all-purpose flour

salt & pepper

In a saucepan, boil potatoes and carrots.

 

In a frying pan, saute the celery and onion in a small amount of olive oil.

While the vegetables are cooking, line a pie plate with a pie crust. You can make one from scratch or use a ready made crust.

Add the chicken to the dish and drain the carrots and potatoes. Add them and the celery and onion when they have become transparent, then add the frozen peas.

In the same pan that the celery and onion were sauteed in, melt the butter or margarine. Add the all-purpose flour and stir to make a rue.

Let this cook for just a minute. Add the chicken broth and the milk. Stir this mixture until it thickens. Pour this over the contents of the pie plate and season with salt and pepper.

Cover with the remaining pie crust. Flute the edges and pierce the top to let the steam escape. Bake at 400F for 50-60 minutes until it becomes golden brown.
Enjoy!

Homemade Chicken Pie

The pie should serve 3 8 people. One 8 person serving contains 380 calories, 39 g carbohydrates, 8 g saturated fat, 18 g protein and 2 g fiber.