"Bludgeoning hard times with a rolling pin"

"Bludgeoning hard times with a rolling pin"

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

I-can-do-it apple pie

Think you can’t make a decent apple pie? Do you feel these types of desserts should be left to the blue ribbon winners at the fair?

Well, throw those notions out just like that uncooperative batch of pie dough. Try this recipe instead!

Start with the pie crust…

Pie crust: (You’ll say, “You must be joking. This crust doesn’t hate me!”)
2 cups flour
2 teaspoons sugar
1 ½ teaspoons salt
2/3 cup vegetable oil
3 tablespoons milk

Mix the above ingredients together and work it with your hands to make a big ball of dough.

Take about half of the dough and press it evenly into a greased pie plate. Keep the remaining half nearby.

Apple pie filling:
6 apples, washed, cored, peeled and thinly sliced
½ cup butter, melted
3 tablespoons flour
½ cup sugar
½ cup brown sugar
¼ cup water
1 teaspoon cinnamon

Place the apple slices inside the formed pie crust.

In a saucepan, heat the butter and flour together to make a paste. Mix in the remainder of the ingredients (sugar, brown sugar, water and cinnamon). Bring to a boil, stirring occasionally. Turn the heat down, but keep on the stove, stirring every once in a while. Don’t keep the heat on longer than 5 minutes or so.

That is just enough time to…

Roll out the remainder of the pie crust dough on a floured surface. Use cookie cutters to cut shapes. Lay them on top of the apples in an attractive design. (Extra dough freezes well.)

Pour the stovetop mixture over the top of the apples and the cookies on top. Just pour, pour, pour--making sure not to overflow or splash.

Bake at 425 degrees for 15 minutes. Lower the heat to 350 and bake for another 40 minutes.

You might want to place a sheet of foil under the pie plate to save your oven from any overflows (mine did not overflow, however—probably depends on the size of your pie plate.)

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Not worth my time? So says Convenience.

The Mertz Log Cabin at Faust Park, Chesterfield, Missouri

I wrote the other day about how Worry paralyzes me from doing what is necessary. Let me introduce you to my other frenemy, Convenience.

Convenience says, "Kris, it's not worth your time to bake bread and mix your own orange juice." It continues, "Just pick up a loaf at the store and while you're there, grab one of those gallon jugs of orange drink, too."

Stop it, Convenience. Stop it, right now!

I see you giggling with Worry behind my back. You two are like mean girls gushing over my new sweater before glancing eye rolls at each other. I'm onto you guys.

At best Worry and Convenience are enablers. At worst, they are saboteurs. Oh yeah, those days are over. I must find new, like-minded pals.

I am learning that the spare change saved from domestic activities such as cooking from scratch add up. And, money saved is actually better than money earned because you don't have to pay taxes on it.

Implementing even more do-it-myself projects should really ca-ching" into some major dough (I regret the pun).

Are you with me?