Pecan Pie: It Tastes Like Home

I’ve been making the pecan pie from Craig Claiborne’s New York Times International Cookbook since the 1970’s.  I was going to say that the cookbook always falls open to that recipe, but it doesn’t–those two pages are slightly sticky with remnants of dark Karo syrup, and I have to pry them apart.

This pie has always been my son Casey’s favorite, and since this was his first ever Thanksgiving away from us, I had to bake one and mail it to him and his bride Jaclyn for their first married Thanksgiving dinner in their Chicago apartment.  Apparently it arrived in perfect shape and brought a taste of Fair Oaks to their table.

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The Happiness of Pies

Apple Pie - Crust Intact , But Not For Long...

The crust-making can be intense if you follow a pastry book recipe but the results are so satisfying.  This Apple pie came out of the oven on Thanksgiving eve and into the happy tummies of my family just before the football game on Thursday afternoon.  Yum!

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Why I Cook


Why I cook.

I love the process.  I love looking at, smelling, handling the beautiful fresh stuff—vegetables, fruit, fruity green olive oil, fat garlic bulbs in papery white skin, humid grainy bread dough.  I love finding out what will happen, tasting the result of taking juicy crimson tomatoes, slicing them into halves, sprinkling the halves with a little olive oil, basil and minced garlic and putting them in the oven for a couple of hours.  They crumple down into flattened discs—all that water has evaporated and what is left is dense rich essence of tomato.

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