Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgving, Simplified: Profanity-Free Pumpkin Pies

The Crust that Saved Thanksgiving
Go ahead -- judge me.  I don't even care.  Every time I bake a pie, I dread making the crust.  It's always too crumbly, except when it's too sticky.  It slides around all over the counter when I try to roll the dough into a circle, no matter which fancy plastic pie baggy or silicone pastry mat or sheets of parchment paper I attempt to control it with.  And it never fits into my pie plates with enough overhang to make a cute little fluted edge like it's supposed to.  Yes, you have more choices when you make your own pie crust, and the cinnamon pecan pie crust that my molasses pumpkin pie recipe calls for is probably tastier and slightly more interesting than a plain, ordinary crust.  Then there's that whole "I made it from scratch" thing, and it's only once a year...  So this morning, I dragged out all my ingredients, and read through the recipe yet again, biting my fingernails, beads of sweat glistening on my forehead, and snarling flames shooting out from my ears and eyeballs when anyone dared to interrupt my concentration by speaking to me. 

I examined my glass pie plates, an assortment of Deep Dish Pyrex jobs ranging from 9" to 9 1/2" diameter, and contemplated dashing out to Target or Bed,Bath & Beyond in search of shallower, "standard" 9" pie plates.  Then I envisioned the hassle of parking, holiday shopping crowds, and the distinct possibility that neither store would even have the kind of pie plate I was looking for, that I'd hunt all over town for it all day long, and that I STILL would have to come home and roll out pie crust afterwards.
Well, nuts to that -- Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time to relax and count your blessings, not a time to teach your children new swear words as your pie crust disintegrates all over the kitchen counter.  I'm making my molasses pumpkin pies for Thanksgiving, but this time I'm using these delightful Pillsbury Pet Ritz frozen pie crusts from the grocery store that come already shaped in their own little disposable pie pans.  I blind-baked the crusts with my pie weights, mixed up a batch of my favorite molasses pumpkin pie filling, poured it into the crusts, and baked them as usual. 
Cinnamon-Molasses Pumpkin Pies with Profanity-Free Piecrusts
This Thanksgiving, I will be thankful that the folks at Pillsbury make pie crusts so I don't have to do it anymore.  And, if anyone in my family misses the original pecan pie crust enough to give me grief about it?  Well, they are welcome to sell their souls to the pastry devils and learn to make pie crusts on their own.
Now, with a smile on my face and a latte in my hand, I'm going right upstairs to my sewing room to make another Dresden plate. 
"Thanksgiving Pie," Norman Rockwell, 1930


Rosemary Dickinson said...

I use the ready made pie crusts too! My pie crusts never come out right. Life's too short! Happy Thanksgiving!

Rosemary Dickinson said...

I use ready made frozen pie crusts too! Mine never seem to come out right! Life's too short! Happy Thanksgiving!

Julie said...

O.M.G.! Thank you, thank you, thank you for the laughs today! I totally know your pain!! I switched to pre-made pie crusts years ago and now my family doesn't have to endure my craziness!

Actually, after all these years, I am this close to just ordering the turkey and all the trimmings from the grocery store. (Note, I said 'almost'!)

Happy Thanksgiving from my family to yours!

Jenny K. Lyon said...

I found a recipe that works, but hey, I think you've got a great idea and you're working a Dresden Plate instead of a pie-go girl!!

Lane said...

Many years ago, I found the Pillsbury all ready pie crusts in the refrigerator section. The fit all my pans and are already rolled, so all I have to do is flatten them, roll them a bit thinner than they come, and we're off to the races. I have sworn to never make a crust again. Good for you taking up the pledge. Lane