Archive for November, 2012

Best. Thanksgiving. Pie. Ever!

Here it is.  The recipe I wished I’d blogged about last year, so that when I couldn’t find my paper copy of it this year, I would have just been able to pull it up online.  It’s my favorite Thanksgiving pie.  Ever!  I don’t know where my mom got it, but she used to make it every year, and when she stopped, I started.  I love this recipe, and it’s even more special to me because Thanksgiving is the only time I ever make it.  It’s also a perfect Black Friday breakfast with a cup of coffee or milk.  Mmmm, I’m drooling just writing about it.

CRANBERRY PIE

Ingredients:

2.5 c. cranberries (washed) — approx. 1 bag

1/2 cup sugar

1/2 cup chopped nuts (I’ve used walnuts, pecans, and hazelnuts, and they’re all delish!)

2 eggs

1 c. sugar

1 c. flour

1/2 c. (1 stick) butter or margarine, melted

1/4 c. shortening or Crisco, melted

Instructions:

Wash & dry the cranberries.  Preheat the oven to 350 degrees (F), and grease a 10″ pie plate.  This is an occasion where size does matter.  This recipe is written for a 10″ pie plate for a reason.  If you’re using a 9″ or smaller pie plate, you should reduce the amount of cranberries & nuts.  Assuming you do have a 10″ pie plate, the first step is to mix the first 3 ingredients together and spread them in the bottom of your greased pie plate.  For lack of a better description, yum!

Cranberries, Walnuts, and Sugar

Next, you’re going to beat the eggs in a large mixing bowl, and add the remaining 1 cup of sugar, flour, butter/margarine, and shortening/Crisco.  To make this recipe a tiny bit more health-conscious, if you prefer to avoid trans-fats, you should use butter and organic trans-fat-free shortening (pictured), since both margarine and Crisco are full of trans-fats.  Beat this mixture well, and pour it over the berry/nut mixture in the pie plate.  It will look roughly like this when it’s ready to go into the oven:

Here it is before it goes into the oven…

Bake the whole thing at 350 F for 50-60 minutes, until golden brown on top.  Let it cool, and enjoy!

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Recipe Time: Cinnamon Pecan Pound Cake

So, I’ve barely blogged this year, but here’s what happened Monday.  I went to make a recipe, and I couldn’t find my paper copy of it.  And I was just too lazy to go out to the car to get my work computer because I had *just* e-mailed it to someone earlier that day.  So I decided to wait, get the recipe at work, and make it Tuesday.  Except on Tuesday, after dinner when the chicklets went to bed, I was so tired, I fell asleep about 10 minutes later.  D’oh!

So here it is the night before Thanksgiving, and I’m giving it another shot.  Both the baking and the blogging, because my life would have been a lot easier this week if I’d done this last year.  So, here’s the first of 3 recipes I’m making for Thanksgiving this year.  I’m bringing this one to my nephew’s HS football game tomorrow morning.  It’s technically a dessert, but it’s great for breakfast too, and makes phenomenal french toast.

The recipe is Cinnamon Pecan Pound Cake from Cooking Pleasures Magazine (click the link for the recipe itself, since I assume it’s copyrighted protected.  The following pictures are mine though, from start to delicious finish.

The first thing to note is that it makes TWO loaves.  The first step is to grease & flour the pans.  I use butter and flour, but you can use a shortcut cooking spray with flour already in it, and that should work just as well.

Greased & Floured Loaf Pans

Then, here are the ingredients you’ll need to have on hand, plus all-purpose (I prefer unbleached) flour (which I just keep in a large airtight container, so not very photogenic).  Please do not use cake flour, bread flour, or any other kind of specialty flour.  And you can probably substitute whole wheat flour, but I don’t know if you’d use the same amount or not.  Feel free to experiment with this as you wish, but if you change it, please let me know how it does.  I’d love any excuse to rationalize calling this recipe “healthy.”  Thanks!

When the batter is ready, here’s how it should look in the pans before you bake it:

Prepared Batter (before baking)

Then, when your timer goes off, you’ll want to use a clean (duh!) toothpick inserted deep into the center of each loaf to see if it’s done.  If the toothpick comes out clean, then your loaf is done.  Let it cool enough to flip it out of the pan, and serve warm or cool.  If the toothpick comes out gooey or with any batter stuck to it, your loaf needs more time in the oven.  Put it back in until the toothpick comes out clean.  I usually go in 5-10 minute increments when I need to add time to a recipe.  Also, I know glass v. metal can come into play, but I can never remember which one cooks faster.  For me, the glass one cooks faster, but it’s slightly smaller too, so that could be why.

Also, if (like me), you don’t have 2 identical loaf pans, one loaf will very likely cook faster than the other.  That’s OK.  You just have to roll with it.  Your patience and diligence will be duly rewarded when they’re both done and look like this:

Yum!