A Confession and a Pie-fecta

OK. *sigh* It’s time to tell the truth about yesterday’s chocolate cheese pie. It really did smell good and look good–even for a cold pie. I said that I would wait, but alas, I lied. Here’s the evidence:

This was the slice I ate last night. I just couldn’t wait. It did indeed taste “like melted chocolate ice cream” as the recipe promised. But really, look at it. Shameful. That’s what you get when you just can’t be patient.

Now you know you can think of a time when you just should’ve waited. I’m impatient, and sometimes I get in trouble when I just won’t wait for things to turn out the way they should. Like this:

They both tasted good, but the second one was just more beautiful to behold. Sometimes, getting your way will be all right, but waiting it out and doing things right will really be what’s satisfying. It was true for this pie.

All right, at this point, I would encourage you to get a snack or a drink. It was a wild night at the pie lady’s house…

tri·fect·a/trīˈfektə/

Noun:
  1. A bet in which the person betting forecasts the first three finishers in a race in the correct order.
  2. A run of three wins or grand events.

I don’t know if I’d call the pies that happened in my kitchen tonight “grand events,” but they were “three finishers,” so to speak. Only tomorrow will tell how grand the events are. Seriously. I’m waiting ’til tomorrow. Here we go.
First was a Lemon Ice Box Pie which required my first attempt at a graham cracker crust. OK. I should have read ahead. A rolling-pin would have worked much better. Therefore, my crust looks sort of…well…artistic. Yeah, that’s it.
The crust got made and I filled it with some yummy lemon filling. TOTALLY guessed at the amount of lemon juice I put in that thing. Reminder: too lazy to squeeze lemons.  And another thing, there was a “beaten egg whites” step whereby you made some meringue-like stuff (church lady cookbook does not explain this AT ALL) and put it on top of the pie. Well, I started whippin’ up those two egg whites. I whipped and whipped. And whipped. But, no. Apparently, one SHARD of yolk was in there or something, because it looked like this:   It may be hard for you to tell from the photo, but verily I say unto you, “This substance is not meant for the top of a pie or anything else anyone wants to eat.”
Enter whipped cream. I just put the rest of the whipped cream I had in the  fridge on top of that Lemon Ice Box Pie. I mean, so what? Whipped cream comes from an ice box, right? So here’s the finished “pie.”  Not attractive. I’m hoping for that situation where ugly stuff tastes good. One of those pies a food critic might call “homey” or “rustic.” A pie with a “nice personality.” Pie number one got done.
 Onward and upward. The next contestant in our pie-fecta was Peachberry Pie. Or maybe Blue-peachy? Bleachy? Yuck. Peachberry it is. So I STILL had blueberries from that GIANT frozen bag>
DANGIT< SOMETHING JUST HAPPENED THAT MADE MY CAPS LOCK STUCK ON>OH WELL< I GUESS IF IT”S WORTH SAYING< IT”S WORTH SHOUTING?
Whew, it fixed itself. Blueberries, canned peach slices, sugar, and flour went into the shell. Then I attempted to use this cool top crust cutter with trees in it. Well…the fruit looked beautiful in the uncooked shell, but you’ll see how it worked out in the end.
Before I show that, I’ll fill you in on the third part of our gruesome threesome of pies. It, too, was from a church lady cookbook and it was named….wait for it……………..Good Pie.
I’ve got some serious admiration for a church lady who can name her entry “Good Pie.” That is confidence, people. In front of God and everybody. So here’s how the Good Pie went down. It called for some stuff I didn’t exactly have. I had a little bit of dark Karo syrup left, but not enough, so I called up the hill to my father-in-law. He searched the pantry and found some, so I sent my kids up the hill to get it. Thanks, Tom!
The other missing ingredient (sort of) was “raw oatmeal.” Here was my solution:
 I know good and well that this is probably not “raw oatmeal,” but it IS cinnamon roll flavor, and we had two whole packs left. VOILA! So I just dumped it in. I held my breath and crossed my fingers and hoped that it would indeed be “good.” That church lady probably would’ve put my name on the prayer list by now, for sure. Oh well, I have found that church ladies often need something to do…might as well be prayin’ for me. Keeps them out of trouble.
This one didn’t have too many ingredients, and here’s how it looked uncooked:
It smelled terrific. We’ll see tomorrow how it tastes. Here’s what my kitchen looked like after THREE pies:
Bowls and measuring spoons everywhere. But it sure was fun. While I waited for pies to cook, I cleaned up and had this gourmet dinner:
Note the name of the wine. I thought it was perfect for a more-than-slightly-twisted baker like myself. It made the wait quite pleasant, I must say.
All right, so here are our three finishers: Peachberry Pie, Lemon Ice Box Pie, and Good Pie.
Notice the Peachberry Pie. I tell ya, no matter what you put with blueberries, they are such stage hogs. My daughter said I should name it a moat pie instead, because of the moat of blueberry juice that seeped out around the edge. Here’s one more shot–the finished Good Pie:
I sure hope it is. I’m taking all the pies I’ve got over to the church tomorrow. I want my preschool buddies to have a Tuesday treat, and the office staff could do with some pie as well. I hope to taste a slice or two myself.
There are 17 days left ’til I turn 40, and I’ve made 33 pies so far.
Today, I’m feeling so, so thankful. Thankful for the pies, the time and the stuff to bake them, but mostly for the folks who will eat them–people who really do matter more than they know.
Today, I spent time with some folks who were down on their luck. So far down, in fact, that even pie wouldn’t have made it better. All I could offer was a prayer, a listening ear, and some time. It just didn’t feel like enough. One thing’s for sure, if you have a chance to give someone some time, a prayer, a pie, or whatever it is you’ve got to give–do it today. Don’t hesitate, because none of us gets to choose the time left in the countdown. I’ll finish today with a section of lyrics from a song by Chris Rice entitled, “Life Means So Much.”

Every day is a bank account
And time is our currency
So nobody’s rich, nobody’s poor
We get 24 hours each
So how are you gonna spend
Will you invest, or squander
Try to get ahead
Or help someone who’s under

Teach us to count the days
Teach us to make the days count
Lead us in better ways
That somehow our souls forgot
Life means so much
Life means so much
Life means so much

3 thoughts on “A Confession and a Pie-fecta

  1. Johann Reid says:

    Do hope you plan to bundle this all into a book. It will sell like hot cakes!! There are a million timid housewives out there who will take courage and leap ahead to do something they have been hesitant about. You know, all the world is not ‘oh what the heck, I’ll just give it a try’, like most of our family is. Failure does not daunt us (you get to try again), but scares much of the world to death. Love you!!!

  2. Stacey Rexrode says:

    I too have had requests for a book. You have a wonderful humor that I love to share. Mable Trice asks me every time I see her what pie you made. She doesn’t have a computer. I’ve started to print them for her.

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