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Thursday Thirteen Ed. #125: How About A Nice Slice of Pie, Sugar?

December 27th, 2007

Dear 13ers and Usual Suspects,

It’s SNOWING again right here in RIVER CITY! Portland, Ore., is not known for our many inches of snow. We are known for our many inches of rain. Snow = winter = making a big bowl of popcorn and watching movies.

Hockey God and I watched the film “Waitress” last night. Have you seen it? I rarely see movies in theaters anymore, it’s nothing but DVDs around here. It was just a great film — tragic and funny and goofy and moving, all in the right proportions. The DVD includes a featurette about the making of the film, and a sweet memorial to the late Adrienne Shelly, the film’s writer and director.

The movie’s theme of pies made me think of my late cousin, Travis, pie-lover extraordinaire. His famous quote: “I like any kind of pie. I like ’em all — pumpkin, lemon meringue, apple, cherry, blackberry, chocolate. One kind I don’t like, though. Cow Pie.” (We were at my grandparents’ dining room table at the time, looking out at the cattle grazing in the field.) I miss you, cuz. Just because, cuz. Here are my 13 favorites pies, plus some recipes:

1) Chocolate pie with a graham cracker crust.

2) Pumpkin pie with lots of cinnamon and whipped cream.

3) “I Can’t Have No Affair Because It’s Wrong and I Don’t Want Earl to Kill Me” Pie

Also known as: Vanilla Custard Meringue, Hold the Banana


2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/3 cup brown sugar
cup melted butter
2 large eggs
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk, scalded*
1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 banana, sliced, OPTIONAL

For meringue:
3 egg whites
1/4 cup granulated sugar

1. In a medium bowl, mix graham cracker crumbs, brown sugar and melted butter until well blended. Press crumb mixture into a 9-inch pan. Preheat oven to 375F.

2. In a large bowl, beat eggs slightly. Add sugar and salt. Slowly stir in hot, scalded milk. Add vanilla. Strain the mixture into pie crust. If desired, add chunks of banana. Sprinkle the top with cinnamon.

3. Bake in a lower shelf of preheated oven for 25 to 30 minutes, or until set.

4. In a large glass mixing bowl, beat egg whites until foamy. Gradually add ¼ cup white sugar, continuing to beat until stiff peaks form.

5. Spread meringue over pie after custard is set, return to oven until meringue is slightly brown. Cool at least 15 minutes before cutting. Makes 8 servings.

*To scald milk, heat over low heat until small bubbles form around the edge of the pan; the temperature should read 180-190.

Now, where was I…

4. Apple pie with caramel topping.

5. My Grandma’s Apple Pie.

6. And her Cherry Pie.

7. And her Huckleberry Pie.

8. And her Pecan Pie. Dang, I’m hungry now. Here is her pie crust recipe. I wish you luck, because I’ve never been able to get it just right like she does, even though I’ve watched her make it enough times:

“I make pie crust from scratch. You’d have to watch me do it to get it right. It’s probably two cups flour, dash of salt, and shortening or lard. I used to use lard all the time, but it’s got more fat in it than Crisco. I don’t like the yellow Crisco, I like the white. Use a fork, break it up into crumbs. Have you a glass of ice water — and I mean ICE water, water with ICE in it. Pour a tablespoon or so in at a time — don’t dump a bunch in. The secret with pie crust is be quick. Don’t mess around, be quick with it or you won’t have a tender pie crust.”

9. I love, love, love the Blueberry Sour Cream Pie at Mom’s Cafe in Salina, Utah.

10. I will also settle for Coconut Cream Pie.

11. Or Peach Pie.

12. A nice Custard Pie will do.

13. But never, ever, ever Cow Pie.


  1. feefifoto says

    Chocolate meringue pie? Okay — chocolate ANYTHING pie.

    December 27th, 2007 | #

  2. Lelo says

    Hey! We watched that movie last night, too. I’ve got a hankerin’ for Bad Baby Pie now. :)

    December 27th, 2007 | #

  3. Vixen says

    Huckleberry?!? Gonna have to find some of those.

    Happy TT WM, I miss visiting you. I hope my laptop is ‘repaired’ when I get home from work.


    December 27th, 2007 | #

  4. Steve says

    Mile High Strawberry Pie?

    I’ll settle for peach or coconut cream, too.

    (I take it back, you can make me a pie if you want.)

    December 27th, 2007 | #

  5. Steve says

    Ah, here it is, I found it.

    December 27th, 2007 | #

  6. Tracie says

    Mmmm. I love pie! Have you seen the movie, Radio? “Where my pie?!”. :)

    I’m surprised Marionberry Pie isn’t on your list, being from the NW and all. And I loved the snow today! Too bad it’s already melting away….

    December 27th, 2007 | #

  7. WackyMommy says

    me 2.

    It is KISMET! Bad Baby Pie just cracked me up. You all who haven’t seen this movie just need to rent it. Right now.

    Fingers crossed for you.

    Hockey God,
    Vanilla cream pie, what say?

    I do love marionberries, but I love huckleberries more.

    December 27th, 2007 | #

  8. Nicholas says

    I could do with some of that pie right now!

    December 28th, 2007 | #

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