In my pie making adventures, I’ve tried quite a few recipes whose results were questionable (Shoofly Pie with blackstrap molasses; do not do this!) or which mysteriously morphed into something else. Such it was that I started with the notion of making chess pie and ended up with this Almond Custard Pie.
I’m not entirely sure how one thing led to another anymore, but this is a delicious almondy confection. I’m not entirely sure it counts as a pie, as the almond crust has the interesting habit of rising to the top of the pie instead of remaining on the bottom as crust.
Almond Custard Pie
A delicious almond custard which may or may not be a pie. . .
Chop your almonds up in a food processor. Once they are finely chopped, add the butter and almond extract and continue processing until well mixed. If the butter starts out soft, then the almonds should start clumping together in a loose dough.
Press your almond dough into the bottom of a pie plate, and bake in the oven for 10 minutes.
While your crust is cooking, cream together your butter and sugar until smooth.
Add in the eggs, flour, whey, almond extract, and nutmeg. Mix well.
Pour the filling into your pie plate, and bake for an additional 60 minutes.
On the whey - the first time I made this recipe, I had really thick whey from one of my cheese-making experiments.. It was a bit like soft yogurt. You can also use buttermilk, OR 1 cup of whey/milk with 1/2 cup of yogurt.
On the pie crust - 1 cup of almonds only makes enough to cover the bottom of the pie plate. I like limited crust, but if you want it to go up the sides as well, double the crust recipe.
A soul cake, a soul cake, a penny for a soul cake!
In honor of All Souls Day
These sweet biscuity-cakes are a traditional food for Halloween, All Saints Day, and All Souls Day; the cakes were given out to beggars and children who went door to door on All Hallow’s Eve. There’s not really one “official recipe” for soul cakes; I imagine that people used different combinations of sweet spices and dried fruit over the years. But this recipe is nice!
A slightly sweet and spicey biscuit, traditionally given out on Halloween.
Prepare your carrots. Finely grating them in fine, but so is cooking them down and mashing them. Put to the side.
Beat your two eggs. Add in oil, sugar, pumpkin puree, molasses, and vanilla extract. Mix well.
Mix together flour, baking soda, baking powder, salt, cinnamon, and nutmeg in another bowl. Combine your wet and dry mixtures.
Add carrots to your batter. Mix well. Pour the carroty mixture into a buttered 8x8 baking pan.
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about one hour. Make sure the cake is done by inserting a knife into the center; it should come out clean.
Its fairly common to cut the oil required in a carrot cake recipe with applesauce, but pumpkin puree works well too! Its especially practical if you've been cooking down a lot of pumpkin recently.
Blackstrap molasses actually tastes acceptable in this cake - possibly because it is not the main sweetener, it just gives the cake a nice brown color. You could probably also use brown sugar and no molasses.
This cake is good enough to be dessert for sure, especially if you ice it with cream cheese frosting. But I like to leave it plain and have it for breakfast with my morning coffee. Yum!
Rhubarb was not quite as expensive as usual at the grocery store this week, so I couldn’t resist buying a few stalks and making something rhubarb-y.
Now everyone knows that rhubarb and strawberries go great together. But rhubarb is equally good with apples! Granted, it won’t have that pretty red tint, but the apples nicely balance out the tartness of the rhubarb. And anyway, strawberries aren’t in season . . .
Peel and chop up your sweet potato. Put it in a saucepan with a bit of water and cook until tender.
If you processed your own pumpkin and were keeping it frozen like I do, you probably want to defrost it now. Better yet, throw the frozen chunks in with the sweet potatos and kill two birds with one stone.
Once your sweet potato is soft, mash it up and combine it with the pumpkin puree.
Add sugar, cinnamon, salt, ginger, nutmeg, and cloves. Stir well.
Beat your egg(s) and add to the mixture, along with your milk. If your sweet potato / pumpkin mix is still warm enough, you can chop up the 1/4 cup of butter and melt it in with everything. If not, then melt the butter in the microwave, then add it to the mixture.
Add the rum! Mix everything together well.
Pour your mixture into 1-2 casserole dishes. I use varying amounts of sweet potato and pumpkin, so it often exceeds one 8x8 dish.