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.
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.
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.