Sunday, November 25, 2007

Portland Pies: Thanksgiving 2007

apple and maple pie, fresh from the oven

For the third year in a row, I spent The #1 Pie Day of the Year (Thanksgiving) in Portland, ME with Robert & Talya and the Portland crew. The first year I made a maple walnut pie, last year I made a cranberry pie, and this year I baked two: a maple pie and an apple pie. Talya made a delicious pumpkin.

The apple pie was pretty standard...I used Northern Spy apples and improvised the filling--brown sugar, a bit of flour, cinnamon, nutmeg, cloves, and lemon juice. For the crust decor, I cut out and added a turkey with my turkey cookie cutter.

I got the recipe for the maple pie from Epicurious, but modified it just a tad. Here's the recipe I used: 

Maple Syrup Pie 
Pie crust 
1 1/2 cups packed brown sugar
2 large eggs
1/2 cup heavy cream (I used 1/2 half and half, 1/2 whipping cream)
1/3 cup pure maple syrup, grade B
2 teaspoons unsalted butter, melted

1. Preheat oven to 350°F.
2. Roll out crust and place in pie dish. I used a turkey cookie cutter and placed cut-out turkeys all around the perimeter of the crust.
3. Whisk together brown sugar and eggs. Add cream, syrup, and butter, and whisk until smooth. Pour filling into pie shell.
4. Bake pie until crust is golden and filling is puffed and looks dry but still shakes, 50 to 60 minutes. Cool, Enjoy!

We topped ours with whipped cream. The pie is already so sweet, I would recommend not sweetening the whipped cream.

Everyone LOVED this pie, which was a pleasant surprise! Next time I'd like to try making it with all maple syrup and no brown sugar.

The dessert table, with the maple and apple pies and Talya's amazing Ukranian cookies. The pumpkin pie was on the 2nd tier of the dessert table!

High on pie, we made up a little song about them:

Friday, November 23, 2007

Dewald Thanksgiving 2008

This year's Seamonster Thanksgiving was totally fun with 7 seamonsters sharing Thanksgiving dinner and 9 seamonsters sharing drinks and dessert. We all got a little goofy on beer and heaping plates of outrageousness, and Meghan passed out again, after a full day at work in the kitchen, waking up to find all the food put away and the house quiet. Well, sort of quiet. Highpoints include EVERYTHING - mashed potatoes, stuffing, squash-apple-cheese gorgeous, turkey, sweet potato-apricot amazingness, rolls, salad, brussel sprout-fennel, a complete line up of delicious drinks, including Meghan's homemade wild grape nectar, and of course, PIES!

Many of us were way too full to fully enjoy pies, but Greg and I did manage to save pie-shaped wedges of stomach space ("pie holes" if you will) in which we delicately slid multiple pieces of pie each.

Meghan won the day with 3 pies, including these two dueling apple pies. One had Dutch heirlooms (on the left) and the other had French heirlooms (on the right). I went for the French, and the pie was perfect.

The pie line up also included a pumpkin pudding pie by Greg which was a little runny this year but absolutely the sweetest tasting thing imaginable. Meghan rounded out the pie bar with a Japanese squash pie, which was unbelievably good with a subtle flavor and great texture and beautiful sheen.

And what's for breakfast? Pie, of course! And for lunch? Apple-squash-cheese gorgeousness and turkey sandwiches!
Thank you, Meghan, Gahlord, JT, Rachel, Rachel, Greg, Tanner and JB! Thank you, farmers and bringers of food! Thank you, plants and animals! Thank you soil, rocks, wind and water! Joy to all!

Monday, November 19, 2007

Da DEEP Dish

A few weeks ago some friends and I made our way to Rokeby for the Superior Concept Monsters puppet workday--to help build puppets for the Greenwich Village Halloween Parade and to make food for the people who help build puppets.

Sara, Heather, and I were on kitchen duty, and in one mad hour of aproned girl talk, loud dance music, and cooking, whipped out a chicken pot pie, vegetable pot pie, chicken stew, chard, salad, and apple pie. Since both pie plates were being used for the dinner pies, the apple pie had to be made DEEP dish style. The deep dish, folks, is not a poor man's pie. It requires plenty of heaping fruit.

But the deep dish= deep delish= deep daze. just ask Brodie:

Unfortunately, no pictures were taken of the savory pies.

Cranberry Chess Pie

Fig Pistachio Tarte Tatin

Peppermint Pattie Tart

Whiskey & Dark Chocolate Bundt Cake

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