Saturday, September 5, 2009

Pie Crust, A Noble First Attempt

The weather here is finally changing, making it easier to start cooking and baking again. I jumped right in with a two-recipe card recipe: Cheddar-Crust Vermont Apple Pie. I've had this recipe for years, but have been afraid to try it because of the cheddar factor. But I've kept it all this time because it intrigues me as well.

I should have known things might not go perfectly when I bought 3 apples instead of 6 like the recipe called for. But it clearly said 3/4 lb, and I weighed them...It turns out that my writing sucks and it was actually 3 1/4lb of apples...So I had to take a second trip to the store to get the rest. And buy shortening which I had thought we'd had, but apparently didn't.

It was a quick trip from the store, and I quickly wipe down all my counters before starting to set out stuff. Now I'm really getting into it. I got my mis en place, aka, my stuff all ready to start working, and I start measuring out ingredients. 2 1/2 cups flour into the bowl for the dough. Everything looks great, except it's a bit dry. Actually it's very dry. But I thought it might be the weather or something and wrapped it up, threw it in the fridge, and hoped for the best.

Now for the apples. Everything's going just fine for these, until I come to the part where I add the rest of the ingredients. "Add the last 1/4 cup of flour"...Except that I didn't have an extra 1/4 cup of flour, I'd put all of it in the dough. That would explain the dryness...Sigh...I did my best with the rolling and kneading and adding extra water, but it's tough-going and really crumbly. I manage to get it all together into some semblance of a pie, and cut the slits in it to let the steam escape.

I set the pie pan on a big baking sheet to catch any juices, and it's a good thing I did, because it oozed at least a half cup of sugary juice. Then I proceeded to wash up the worst of the dirty dishes, wipe down the counters, and shake out the flour from the towel I used to cover the counter for rolling the dough. From start to finish, this took me two episodes of NCIS to watch, so I'd estimate about 1.5 hours of prepping, assembling, and cleaning.

It looked good when I took it out, but it's too late and the pie is still too hot to taste. That'll happen tomorrow. My feet were sore by the time I was finished, but it was fun to make. And that's the most important thing, right?

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