Tuesday, February 26, 2008

past pies

so, i haven't been too crafty lately. i also haven't been very productive in the kitchen either. this year for lent i gave up sweets (candy, candy bars, cookies, cake, cupcakes, pie, muffins, scones, pumpkin loaf, even cinnamon raisin bagels), and when you can't eat a baked good the drive to put in the effort to create it wans. not that i'm a practicing catholic. i was raised catholic, but i'm really an agnostic now - but that is beside the point. i decided to dig-up some past projects to keep the posts flowing.

pineapple-raspberry pie
i had my first experience with berry picking in the greater dc metro area, and i needed a pie to go with fresh berries. this little guy is what i came up with. it reminded me of rhubarb pie. i think the tartness and texture of the pineapple is to thank for that. the trick with this pie was the recipe though - i had to invent my own. the majority of the berry pie recipes i found were for frozen style pies or the kind that gel/solidify without being baked. that's not how i role. if i'm going to make a pie, i'm going to bake it. the whole thing. not just the crust.

grapefruit meringue pie
so i thought to myself one day, self, why do they only make lemon meringue pies when there are so many other types of citrus fruit out there? good question, huh? well, i decided to experiment. my friend lindsay served as my sous chef (baker) as we tackled this challenge (she is the one holding the pie - and we dirtied her kitchen, not mine, in the process). it turns out that you can substitute almost any type of citrus fruit for the juice and zest in a lemon meringue pie recipe. i don't know what specific recipe i used for this pie, but i imagine any solid recipe would do. if you need one, paula dean's is probably good. i would, however, recommend using 1/2 lemon juice and 1/2 orange juice if you are making an orange meringue pie. otherwise it is too sweet and candy like. how do i know this? well, i tried to make mike and dave an orange meringue pie for their birthdays (which failed due to my electric mixer breaking mid-meringue; you can't meringue by hand, it just doesn't work. this has also contributed to my lack of baking of late), and i didn't like the filling at all. we ended up throwing a good portion of it out. which makes me sad. very sad.

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