Lessons learned from baking a pie

Posted on December 1, 2011


lessons learned from baking piesThanksgiving is my favorite holiday and not just because of the food focus. It’s a time to gather with family and friends and to reflect and be thankful for all the good things in my life.

This year I volunteered to bake the pies. Rather, I was volunteered. πŸ™‚
I can barely boil water, so this was going to be a challenge for me.

I’m still getting over the potato chip/tuna fish casserole concoction I was forced to make (and eat) for aΒ  junior high home ec class project.

I blame my lack of cooking skills on my many years living in New York City. I lived in the Upper East Side and was able to walk to work in mid-town. On my way back to my apartment, I passed every type of restaurant known to man. Why would anyone need to cook, when all you had to do was walk into a restaurant and order take out?

What I learned from baking pies:

1. Always have a Plan B (and a Plan C).

Or maybe I should say, NEVER leave a pan full of stuff on the stove and go into another room. I did this and when I returned to the kitchen, smoke was pouring out of the pan. Oops, mixture was totally burned. Thank goodness Mom had thought to buy double the ingredients so we could start again. If she hadn’t done that, we had a half loaf of pumpkin bread that we would have served for dessert instead. (We had just finished off the other half of the loaf before we started baking.)

2. Stay in the moment.

Or, should I say, PAY ATTENTION to what you’re doing. I was measuring out the ingredients the second time around, and I picked up a measuring cup for the sugar. I didn’t pay attention to exactly what cup I picked up and ended up putting in 1/3 of a cup instead of 1/2 cup. Who can quickly tell me how much more sugar would I need? Sounds like one of those dreaded word problems from high school algebra.

3. Enjoy the journey.

I am very goal oriented and tend to focus on the end result. Yes, it was important to produce a finished pie, but that’s not all. My Mom and I baked the pies together. My dear Mom is 89 years old and sprightly as ever, but the reality is she probably won’t be around for many more years. I treasure every moment with her. As we baked, we reminisced about past Thanksgivings. It was priceless.

The pies were a big hit. Now, I am on tap to bake them for Christmas. Oh dear.

The picture on this post is of my two pies, an apple and a pumpkin one. Notice the little Pilgrim figurines keeping watch over them.

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