November 28, 2002
Drive with Pie

Today is Thanksgiving, which means today we eat pie.

I am fairly ambivalent about Thanksgiving food. Most of it (sweet potatoes, stuffing, etc.) is too heavy for me. (Cranberry sauce, however, redeems the day.) The worst, by far, is the infliction of pumpkin pie, which I've never really warmed up to. My solution, then, is to bake an apple pie, which usually satisfies everybody.

My mother always said it was difficult to make pie, so she rarely did it. I think she was referring to the crust, for which she may have had overly high expectations. I've found it's pretty easy to make the crust, certainly easier and less tedious than peeling and chopping 8 or 9 appples (a combination of Granny Smith and Macintosh).

Tip: Pre-cooking the apple slices in butter and cinnamon before you put them in the crust will soften and slighty caramelize them. You want caramelization, whether you know it or not.

My favorite part is brushing the top crust with milk and topping with sugar. And don't forget to carve a cryptic message into the crust for venting purposes. (Ours, though it may be difficult to make out, reads "This guitar kills fascists.")

Bake for 20 minutes with foil around the edges, otherwise your crusts will burn. Bake for another 20 minutes or so without the foil.

Get in the car and drive with pie for at least an hour, until you get to wherever you're going. Or, stay home and admire.

Happy Thanksgiving.

Posted at November 28, 2002 10:15 AM