Friday, October 30, 2009

I Northern Spy with My Little Apple of My Eye-Phone Pie

Picture taken by an I-phone taking a picture of an I-phone taking a picture of an I-phone taking a picture of a Northern Spy Apple of My Eye Pie

Northern Spies are my favorite baking apple. I picked up a few of them at Hardeman's Orchard in Red Hook, NY for this pie made for last weekend's Saturday night dinner in the Rokeby back kitchen. I used this basic recipe:

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.

For filling, combine:
8 good size apples, cored and cut into 1/2 inch to 3/4 inch pieces.
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 cup maple syrup (I used syrup tapped last year by Marina and Lou from Rokeby maples)
cinnamon and nutmeg to taste
3 tablespoon corn starch
I added a dash of vanilla extract, as M&L had some homemade with vodka and fresh vanilla beans.

Using the crust recipe at left, roll out crust and place in greased and floured pie dish. Spoon in filling and top with top crust, fluting edges and adding a crust design (EYE!). Brush on an egg wash (Shoving Leopard Farm fresh egg!) and sprinkle turbinado sugar on top. Put the pie in the oven, 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake 35 to 40 minutes longer. Filling will bubble and crust will be golden brown when finished.
Apple of my eye!
Plate lickers in the PEZ!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Pumpkin Whoopie Inspiration: Maple-Cream Cheese Variation

Last Sunday I got home from brunch and the grocery store, all set to make pumpkin (actually butternut squash--the store had no pumpkin puree yet!) cupcakes for a pumpkin-carving party. But after peeking here and seeing Michelle's pumpkin whoopie pies, I had to divert my plans! I didn't have marshmallow on hand (and am not so much a fun of marshmallow creme in general), so I made a maple-cream cheese filling instead.

I used Michelle's recipe below for the cakes, and used this recipe for the filling:

Maple Cream Cheese Filling


3 cups confectioners' sugar
1 stick unsalted butter, softened
8 ounces cream cheese, softened
3 Tblsp. maple syrup


1. In a food processor, beat the butter until it is smooth. Add the cream cheese and beat until combined.
2. Add the confectioners' sugar and maple syrup and beat until smooth. Cover the bowl tightly and put it in the refrigerator. Let the filling soften at room temperature before using.

A hit amongst the jack o' lanterns and at the WXYC new DJ filing party the next day!

p.s. if you've never experienced the whoopie or need some background check out this post and the linked NY Times article from last year.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Pumpkin Whoopie Pie Recipe


1 c. powdered sugar, sifted
1 c. (2 sticks) unsalted butter, room temperature
1 7-oz jar marshmallow creme
2 t. maple extract
3 c. all purpose flour
2 t. ground cinnamon
1-1/2 t. baking powder
1-1/2 t. baking soda
3/4 t. salt
3/4 t. ground nutmeg
3/4 t. ground cloves
6 T. unsalted butter, room temperature
3/4 c. (packed) golden brown sugar
3/4 c. sugar
1/2 c. vegetable oil
3 large eggs
1 15-oz can pure pumpkin
1/2 c. milk
Nonstick vegetable oil spray


(1) Using electric mixer, beat sugar and butter in large bowl until fluffy, about 2 minutes. Add marshmallow creme and maple extract; beat until blended and smooth. DO AHEAD Can be made 2 hours ahead. Let stand at room temperature.
(1) Sift first 7 ingredients into large bowl. Using electric mixer, beat butter and both sugars in another large bowl until blended. Gradually beat in oil. Add eggs 1 at a time, beating to blend between additions. Beat in pumpkin. Add dry ingredients in 2 additions alternately with milk in 1 addition, beating to blend between additions and occasionally scraping down sides of bowl. Cover and chill batter 1 hour.
(2) Arrange 1 rack in bottom third of oven and 1 rack in top third of oven; preheat to 350°F. Line 2 baking sheets with parchment; spray lightly with nonstick spray. Spoon batter onto baking sheet to form cakes (~3 T. per pie to make ~23 pies), spacing apart. Let stand 10 minutes.
(3) Bake cakes until tester inserted into centers comes out clean, about 20 minutes, rotating sheets halfway through baking. Cool cakes completely on baking sheets on rack. Using metal spatula, remove cakes from parchment.
(4) Line cooled baking sheets with clean parchment; spray with nonstick spray, and repeat baking with remaining batter.
(5) Spoon about 2 T. filling on flat side of 1 cake. Top with another cake, flat side down. Repeat with remaining cakes and filling. DO AHEAD Can be made 8 hours ahead. Store in single layer in airtight container at room temperature.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Painswick Dog Pie

While browsing old folklore journals for an annotated bibliography assignment for my Folklore Theory class, I came across this brief article, published in the December 1897 volume of Folklore, a British academic journal. The article, by A.B. Gomme, remarks on the tradition of baking small porcelain dog figurines into plum pies on Painswick Feast-Day, celebrated the Sunday after September 19th (as good a day for a feast as any, I suppose!). The story goes that this Painswick, England tradition apparently came about when some travelers from Stroud came a-visiting and ordered a meat pie. There was no more meat, so the village butcher looked around for a substitute-- and his eyes finally settled on his poor dog.

There is a varying explanation, but I thought you might like to go straight to the source (particularly because it makes great use of the word "bugbear"). Here's a snapshot of the 1897 article (click to enlarge):
If anyone ever finds a porcelain Painswick dog, do send it my way, and we'll put it in a bow-wow pie next time sunday-after-september-the-nineteenth rolls around!