Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thorsday Book Review - And Pie!

Let me say in advance that no chipmunks were harmed in the making of this post.

Remember a couple of weeks back, when I told you about the Wall Street Journal reviewing books about pie for me?  Oh, they reviewed them for their other readers, too, or so they claim, but it was really all for me.  And remember that my dearly beloved told me to buy them?  And remember that they were less expensive at Amazon than the WSJ said they'd be?  So, here's the first one.

THE UNITED STATES OF PIE
by Adrienne Kane

The author is the wife of a professor at Yale.  When they moved to New Haven, she didn't know anyone, and so, noting that she was romping around cooking like a lunatic, or something similar, he suggested that she look in the Yale Library for cookbooks.  She was amazed to find a collection of cookbooks, and evidently proceeded to check out many of them.  From this came the idea for a cookbook filled with pie recipes, and this book was born.  The book is divided into 4 sections, one for each quadrant of the US, and has a selection of recipes from each region.  Some are obvious, such as apple pie from the Northeast, and pecan pie from the South.  Others are a little bit of a surprise, like Concord Grape Pie.  There is background for each pie, along with a short chapter about each region's pies, and stories of her visits to those regions. She also gives recipes for 6 different pie crusts, but, being pie-crust-phobic myself, I'm going to stick to the crust that my dearly beloved dubbed The Best Pie Crust Ever!  This book is good reading, even if you don't want to make these pies.

And, to make you want this cookbook, I even made an unusual pie from it.  Remember the boys and their purchase of  "a couple of boxes" of chicken crackers?  And how they had to get 2 apples at the same time?  Well, here's where one apple went.  Adrienne says this recipe originated in Delaware, found in a community cookbook.

CHIPMUNK PIE

1 pie crust, 9" recommended, but I used a 10" pie plate

2 eggs or 1/2 cup egg beaters
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
1/2 cup flour
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp vanilla extract
pinch of salt
1 Granny Smith Apple, peeled, cored and cut in small pieces
1/2 cup chopped walnuts or pecans (or a mixture of both)


Beat the eggs with the sugars, salt and vanilla extract.  Add the flour and baking powder, and beat until combined.  Stir in the apple pieces and nuts, and pour into the unbaked crust.  Bake at 350F for 40 to 45 minutes, until nicely browned.  The pie will puff up while baking, but will deflate while cooling.  Cool to room temperature before serving.

Mark used my Pampered Chef apple peeler/corer/slicer on the apple, and quite enjoyed himself; too bad I didn't get a picture of him.  But with only one apple to peel, it went very quickly.  I then cut the slices of apple into eighths so they'd cook properly in the pie.  (Naturally, since Mark helped with the pie, he told his brothers that he hunted the chipmunk for the pie.)

Because of the flour, this pie had a somewhat cakelike texture; I served it topped with whipped cream.  Dan whined about the nuts, Ryan liked it, although not as much as apple pie, and my dearly beloved said it was quite good.  I'm thinking I'll have to make it when the girls are home for a variety of opinions.

12 comments:

Nichole said...

You know I was waiting to hear about this one! :) Looks yummy.

Jan Mader said...

I'm headed for the kitchen!

~~louise~~ said...

Now you're talking my language! I only wish it were National Pie Month or Pie Day at least but, since it contains regional recipes and you even made a pie for the occasion, in which no chipmunks were harmed, I'm going to need to look into this book.

I'm thinking the absentee "voters" will say Aye!!!

Thanks for sharing, Marjie...

Two French Bulldogs said...

we never heard of a chipmunk pie! We are starving
Benny & Lily

Food, Fun and Life in the Charente said...

Ha ha, chipmunk pie, I am glad that you did not hurt any while processing this recipe :-) Diane

Mango said...

Chipmunk pie, nommy. I admit to reading more recipes than actually cooking. I think I would love to read that pie book.

Mango Momma

SissySees said...

The book sounds cute. The pie sounds too... starchy for me, but I bet Mr. Carbs - er, the Knight - would love it.

(And the apple peeler/corer/slicer has GREAT appeal with some males. The Knight pouts if I use it without giving him the chance to do so.)

altadenahiker said...

Well, I read a book of quilting stories and I don't quilt. So why not pie? It's a great title.

gMarie said...

That sounds like a fun pie. ::sigh:: how I wish I could bake ::sigh::

g

grace said...

my mom JUST got this book from the library and she was telling me about some of the interesting pies she'd seen in it, and this is the very first one she mentioned! i thought it sounded great, and now i know it is. :)

Gloria said...

I love pie Marjie and I love this book:)

Blond Duck said...

I love it for the name alone.