Ooooh - another celebrity guest food blogger at Karenpie!
Duane's mom, Joan, also known as Grandma, gets the honors today. She's going to teach us how to make her famous butterscotch pie. Pies are a staple in the Kogler household and are probably Stan's (Duane's dad) favorite dessert. I asked him once what his favorite pie was and he said,
"I like two kinds of pies - hot and cold." Gotta love someone who's that easy to please!
So, can you handle the excitement? More importantly, can you handle the pie? Let's see if you're up to the task.
Here's whatcha need -
1 c. brown sugar
1 t. salt
1/3 c. flour
3 eggs, separated
2 c. milk, scalded
1 t. vanilla
2 T. butter
You'll also need ingredients for the crust and the meringue. I'll list them when we get to those parts. Be patient - my celebrity guest food blogger is nervous and temperamental. I had to give in to all kinds of whims - rose petals on the floor, chilled, mountain spring water bottled in the Swiss Alps and served in a crystal goblet, a licensed masseuse standing by in case her arm got tired from whisking - you know, the things that I usually have when I cook.
Whisk the brown sugar, salt and flour together in a large, microwave-safe bowl. Pour in the scalded milk and whisk to mix.
Begin microwaving. Cook on high, stopping every 2 minutes to stir. During this process, here's how the conversation with my celebrity guest food blogger (CGFB) went down .
Karenpie: "How long was that in the microwave?"
CGFB: "I think it was 2 minutes. Maybe two minutes and 12 seconds."
KP: "So it's been cooking a total of 6 minutes?"
CGFB: "No, more like around 4 minutes. Maybe 5 minutes. Or something like that. I don't usually think about it. I just start cooking it and looking at it every couple of minutes."
And, just to let you know, I love watching people cook like this - they know the recipe so well and they're so experienced in the kitchen, it's almost harder for them when they have to think about the recipe and explain it as they cook. My mother-in-law is one of those rare breed of cooks - a farm wife who has been cooking since she was a child. Joan told me she learned how to cook from her mom, who died when she was 15, and from a lady who hired her as a 6th-grader, to help her around her farm. Joan helped this lady can and garden, cook and gather eggs and butcher chickens. She earned $1.50 a day.
She's forgotten more about cooking than I'll ever know. Anyway, back to the pie filling -
We eventually decided it will take a total of 4-6 minutes in the microwave before you see it doing this -
It will start foaming up and thickening.
Take it out of the microwave and whisk in the egg yolks, one at a time.
Joan had an able assistant helping her separate the eggs -
"I love to break eggs!"
It was a little tough, figuring out how to separate them. Fortunately, my CGFB was a good teacher. However, at this point I started getting attitude.
CGFB: "This is the longest I've ever taken, making this pie. I'd usually be done by now."
KP: "I know, taking pictures of each little step is a hassle. Also, teaching a 7-year old how to separate eggs is a bit challenging. Can I get you some water in your crystal goblet?"
CGFB: "No. Where's that masseuse?"
KP: "Uh . . . . . ."
Once the three egg yolks have been whisked in, start cooking it in the microwave in 2-minute increments again. And again with the attitude -
Speaking slowly, as to a very small child or pain-in-the-hiney daughter-in-law -
CGFB: " I . . . am . . . using . . . the . . . microwave. I . . . am . . . pushing buttons . . ."
What? Am I a magnet for smart alecs? Sheesh.
Cook another 2 minutes on high in the microwave, after you add the egg yolks. Stir in the butter and vanilla then set it aside.
Now we're ready for the crust. This pie goes into a pre-baked crust. If you have your own tried-and-true recipe, by all means use it! Here's how Joan makes hers-
In a medium bowl, mix together-
2-1/4 c. flour
1 t. salt
2/3 c. oil- canola or vegetable is fine
1/4 c. water
Stir it up until it forms a dough ball then separate it into 2 pieces. This recipe will make two crusts.
Flatten one of the dough balls between 2 pieces of waxed paper.
Then roll it out. Joan got this rolling pin over 50 years ago. It was a wedding present from her high school home ec teacher.
Peel the waxed paper off the top and transfer the dough to your pie plate. Then peel the other piece of waxed paper off. Isn't that nifty?
Make a pretty, ruffled edge and prick the crust all over with the tines of a fork.
Bake 10 - 12 minutes at 450F or until golden brown. When it's done baking, leave your oven on so you can bake the meringue.
In another bowl, beat your three egg whites with 1/4 c. sugar. See those stiff, glossy peaks? Perfect.
Pour the butterscotch filling into the baked pie shell and smooth it out.
Spoon the meringue on top and use a spatula to get it all the way to the edge of the pie crust, sealing in the filling. The meringue will shrink as it bakes. If you don't get it all the way to the edge of the crust, you'll end up with filling showing through. Lord help us if our filling shows. How embarrassing.
You can also use your spatula to make pretty waves and swirls in the meringue. Put the pie back in the 450F oven and bake until the top is nice and golden brown - around 10 minutes. Or it might have been 15. Sigh. Just watch it, OK?
See? How pretty is that?
Butterscotch pie - a Kogler family staple.