Is it possible for a pie to hold a grudge? A banana cream pie to be exact? That's how I felt as I made this week's Tuesdays with Dorie recipe.
Now, I'll confess upfront. Pie and I don't have a love affair going on. It's not my favorite dessert. I much prefer cake. And cookies. And ice cream. But there are some pies that I like. I love french apple, and I make a great cranberry/apple every Thanksgiving that is my all-time favorite. It has a cornmeal crust that compliments the filling to perfection. And yet, I've been having such a good time making recipes that I wouldn't normally make, that I went into this week's selection with much enthusiasm and hope. The pie was not fooled.
My first inclination that trouble was brewing was with the crust. I did not take Dorie's advice and chill the rolled out dough before attempting to place it in the pie plate. My bad. I was in a hurry and wanted to get the pie done. I had rolled it out between parchment paper and the dough got too soft making it almost impossible to remove the parchment paper. There were rips and tears (both of the holey and weepy variety). So I decided to do some patchwork, figuring it would still taste the same.
So I baked my crust and look at what happened. I guess my patchwork didn't hold. sigh
Still, I was not deterred. It was going to be okay. It would still taste good even if it wasn't the prettiest pie ever made. Don't get worked up Annette. Calm down. It's going to be delicious.
I had chilled the custard while the crust was baking. When the time came to assemble the pie, I vigorously whisked the custard as Dorie told me too. I have to say, I was surprised at how gelatinous and gloppy it was. I was expecting it to be much more creamy, almost pudding-like. Maybe I wasn't vigorous enough? Maybe I should have whisked it in the stand mixer. Did anyone else have this problem? It almost wasn't spreadable.
See what I mean?
While spreading the custard, gently I might add, the crust came right up!
At this point, I almost threw in the towel and gave up. I had been beaten down in the kitchen. By a pie. It's not often that my confidence is shaken in the kitchen. Seriously. But I didn't give up. I had invited my parents over (they love pie), they were on their way and I didn't want to disappoint. And it would still taste good, even if it turned out to be a spoonful of pie instead of a nice pretty slice. So I finished it up the best that I could. Thankfully, the whipped cream topping was easy and didn't give me any trouble.
The end result? My parents really liked it. They loved the crust! We thought the custard could be a little sweeter, and I think creamier. Maybe I over cooked it? It wasn't half bad for pie. I only had a few bites and I sent it home with mom and dad where it would be much more appreciated (I was still bitter).
I have Amy of Sing for Your Supper to thank for choosing this week's recipe. Thank you Amy! You've provided me a challenge. I will master the pie.
I'm off to see how the other bakers fared this week and see if I can gather any tips for improving my crust and custard. Suggestions are welcome! If you want to put your own pie making skills to the test, you can find the recipe in Dorie's delicious book and over on Amy's blog.