Not the lovely mathematical kind, but the lovely buttery kind. While I do love math (I mean, who doesn’t?!), I love pie more. I must admit though, shortcrust has been a bit of a challenge for me. While my sister makes pies that look like a picture from a cookbook, with crust that is heavenly, mine have not measured up. I struggle greatly to make a crust that comes together. I suspected that I was missing some sort of gene that would allow me to do this. My mom was never a pie maker, so I don’t really have any historical data to go on. Maybe she is missing the gene also. Who knows. But this last summer, I had put my sister to the test. We had spent the afternoon picking blackberries. We all asked that she make us a pie to go with dinner. And lo and behold, her crust wouldn’t come together. AHHA! It wasn’t me. We blamed it on the heat, but I think there must be something about her recipe not working in my house. I swear to it. It took at least 3 tries to get a crust to work. She was now walking a mile in my crust-less shoes.
Anyway, just when I thought I was suffering from some sort of retardation, it all came together. This week, I wanted to make a brocoli cheese potpie. This is my oldest son’s favorite. I made the crust no less than 3 times before it worked out. I was so frustrated that first night, after making 2 crusts and having nothing to show for it, we went for Pho. This was comfort to me when I needed it. The next day, I decided to man up and tackle it again. Finally, I could tell when the moment was right and there was my lovely crust. It even rolled out without much hassel. It was a beaut! I couldn’t bring myself to waste even a bit of it, since I had to work so hard to make it turn out. I folded it over onto itself to make a rustic looking pie. It was SOOO delicious, even if I do say so myself.
What was the secret: I gave up on using the recipes calling for shortening (including my sister’s) and switched to butter. I may be wrong, but that was the only thing I changed. Not that I needed to be convinced that butter was a better way of life, but I am now willing to buy the t-shirt.