Sunday, November 27, 2011

A Delicious Childhood Memory

Sarah Wheeler’s Butterscotch Pie

(Reputed to be the First Butterscotch Pie)

This pie was mistakenly “invented” in a bakery (the Wheeler Creamerie Exchange of Connersville) in my home state of Indiana, when Sarah Wheeler, the proprietor, scorched the cream pie she was cooking while talking with a customer.  Her sons tasted the scorched results and claimed they were delicious; thus, a new pie flavor was invented! 

This is the recipe Sarah is said to have published in 1904 for a Methodist Church cookbook:

2 ½ cups milk
2 eggs separated
¼ cup flour
1 cup dark brown sugar, firmly packed
½ cup water
1/8 tsp. salt
1 ½ Tbsp. butter or margarine
1 tsp. vanilla
1 8-inch baked pastry shell

Thoroughly combine ½ cup milk, egg yolks and flour.  Set aside.  Scald remaining 2 cups of milk over hot water.  Combine brown sugar, water and salt in skillet.  Place over low heat and bring to a gentle boil.  Cook until mixture thickens and a few bubbles break sending up not whiffs, but puffs of smoke.  Add caramelized sugar very slowly, stirring constantly, to scalded milk.  When smooth, gradually stir in egg-yolk mixture and cook, stirring constantly, over hot water until thick.  Remove and add butter or margarine and vanilla.  When fat has melted, stir it in.  Cool.  Pour filling into cooled pie shell.  Make a meringue using the egg whites, ¼ tsp. Cream of tartar and ¼ cup sugar.  Spread over pie.  Bake in hot oven (400 degrees) for 8 to 10 minutes or until delicately browned. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Cassandra’s Recipe for Apple Pan Dowdy

An Old Photo of a Family Peeling Apples Found by Cassandra in Indiana this Past Summer

“…apple pan dowdy makes your eyes light up and your tummy say, ‘howdy’…”

An easy, delicious recipe for using all those wonderful, fresh, ripe autumn apples: 

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. 

Peel, core and cut enough apple slices to fill a medium iron skillet.  (Cassandra loves her new cabinet-mounted apple peeler/corer – only $8.99 at Christmas Tree Shops!) 

Mix together ½ cup brown sugar, ½ cup butter, 2 tsp. cinnamon, and a sprinkle of nutmeg.  Pour mixture over apples. 

Add 2 more cups brown sugar over top and cover with ready-made crust (Cassandra's favorite is Mrs. Smith's frozen Oronoque Orchards™ Deep Dish Pie Crust).  Prick top and bake 1 hour at 350 degrees. 

Serve warm with vanilla ice cream, whipped cream or by pouring warm milk over the dowdy in a bowl.    

Enjoy while listening to Dinah Shore’s famous rendition of the song, Shoo Fly Pie and Apple Pan Dowdy, from the late 1940s! 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Falling Leaves

From an antique book, Falling Leaves: Songs and Sketches arranged by E. Nesbit & Robert Ellice Mack, which I recently purchased in upstate New York...

Monday, October 17, 2011

Shop Windows of Paris

(Photos taken by Cassandra)
On a recent trip to Paris during “Fashion Week,” I thoroughly enjoyed the many shopping and “window shopping” opportunities.  The French term for window shopping, faire du lèche-vitrine, translates directly as “to go window licking.” Of course the shop windows were filled with fabulous fall haute couture, but I chose to photograph some more varied items during my three days of walking the streets of Paris…

Au revoir!

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

In the Days of the Golden Rod

(All photos taken at or near Cassandra's upstate New York farmhouse.)

Across the meadow in brooding shadow
I walk to drink of the autumn's wine­
The charm of story, the artist's glory,
To-day on these silvering hills is mine;
On height, in hollow, where'er I follow,
By mellow hillside and searing sod,
Its plumes uplifting, in light winds drifting,
I see the glimmer of golden-rod.

In this latest comer the vanished summer
Has left its sunshine the world to cheer,
And bids us remember in late September
What beauty mates with the passing year.
The days that are fleetest are still the sweetest,
And life is near to the heart of God,
And the peace of heaven to earth is given
In this wonderful time of the golden-rod.

 by Lucy Maud Montgomery

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Summer Sunset

(Photos recently taken by Cassandra at her upstate New York farm...)

Sweet day of summer balm and rest,
Oh, stay thy flight!
Still wave, above yon mountain's crest,
Thy banners bright!
Still hold the portals of the west
Against the night!

Lo!  how the waving forest trees
Beckon they stay!
Hark, how the fragrant evening's breeze
Doth woo delay!
While thrushes plead across the leas,
Pass not away!

But though all nature join the cry,
Not yet - not yet!
Behind yon rocky rampart high
Thy sun will set!
Each bird will hush - each floweret's eye
With tears be wet!

E'en now beyond the purpling hill
Thy light hath past:
The woodland shadows, silent chill--
Are o'er me cast.
The while thou wingest, tireless till
Thou gild the east!

The Father knows we cannot bear
Unclouded light;
Therefore each perfect day must share
With darksome night --
Until He bring that dawning fair,

~ George S. Dwight, from The Cool of the Day, 1892

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