Tuesday, April 14, 2009

Guest Submission: Cherry-Hobo-Campfire Pie with Serendipity Shavings

The epic tale of this pie begins with an act of faith: my housemate announced that we would be having an inter-house Easter potluck/bonfire and that we all ought to make something. I'd never been to an Easter dinner before, and that fact may or may not have had something to do with the decision to make a pie, my first ever. We happened to have some canned cherries lying around the kitchen, and I went to the Bestway in search of some butter (and also to Pfeiffer's for a bike tube, but that is unrelated).

I've made lots of food and food-like things before, but never pie. I don't feel biased against pies--I happen to enjoy them very much. I just tend to make more food-for-the-week stuff, like soups. But for whatever reason, the spirit had moved me, so to speak, in the direction of a cherry pie.

I was raised Jewish, and the people who raised me Jewish live in Florida, so there was no religion or family to distract me from this pie.

Given that this was my first pie, I was very nervous about the crust falling apart. I've heard the horror stories. I checked a couple cookbooks and the general consensus is that the ingredients have to be really cold before rolling them out onto a pie tin. I thus spent as much, if not more time refrigerating the crust ingredients before starting than I would baking the pie. I heated the canned cherries with brown sugar and a thickening agent. I put the latter on top of the former, refrigerated it again just to be sure, and then baked it on 400F for 50 minutes.

At some point in this process my housemate told me that, in fact the Easter potluck had been canceled due to lack of neighborly interest, but we'd probably have the bonfire later on.

At 6:28:46 in the PM I sent out a text message about this resurrection-themed bonfire. A few minutes later I received a call from the host of this blog, although at the time I did not know that this blog existed. Emily said "word on Irving street is that there is a bonfire at your house!" I said "yes, and I made a pie." To which Emily said, "no way, did you know I have a blog about pies?". To which I said "well, it's my first pie ever so it probably isn't worth blogging about." To which, of course, she said "woah I have a whole section about first pies!"

A gang assembled in my backyard after sundown. Pie was consumed hobo-style, which is to say, passed around a campfire, eaten directly from the tin with a single shared fork.

My coincidence of having made a pie for a pie-blogger (and subsequently writing for her blog myself) was dwarfed by other serendipitous and auspicious events. Emily, it turned out, had a friend in common with Isabel, and they phoned him from beside the campfire. It was also revealed that when Iga moved to DC, her best friend Jimmy gave her the phone number of my friend Jordan, who was also present at the bonfire and pictured next to me in the photo above.

I am happy to have discovered this blog, the connections between the people described herein, and the fun to be had from piebaking.