Monday, April 12, 2010
Easy Fresh Strawberry Pie
Everybody loves him.
Old ladies love him, children love him, even thugs love him.
From the first time he ever set foot in my mother's house she loved him like her own, slobbery kisses included. My sister treats him like her own brother, and trusts him with her kids, which is saying a lot. When my pops first found out that we were getting married, he called Warwick to threaten his life with promises of limb ripage (is that a word?) if he ever put a hand on me, Warwick responded with a half grin, a chuckle, and a "Yes sir. I understand sir, "then proceeded to tell me how much my dad loves me.
Me on the other hand, when people meet me they're like " Huh, she sure does make a lot of facial expressions. . . . . .why does her mouth scrunch up like that when she drinks from a bottle? . . . .boy, she talks A LOT. I wonder if she's breathing between words."
I'm a little ummmm. . . .different, to say the least. And I'm super proud of the fact that I am who I am, and I don't try to be anyone else. Usually. Well, mostly. Okay sometimes.
But definitely, when I'm around my mother-in-law, I seem to lose my mind. Only because I am convinced she's thinking a few more things about me in her head, than I mentioned above.
I love her. And, I am sure that she love's me. But, and there is a but, I am POSITIVE, that she does not feel for me, the same way that my mother feels about Warwick. Well, I say positive, I think I'm positive. It's not like I can read her mind. And it's not like she is the same woman as my mom, who wears her emotions on her sleeve (in a good way Mommy, in a good way).
My mother-in-law is emotional, I guess, but not when it comes to me. Which is good right? Who wants someone blubbering, and all crazy like, slobbering and kissing on you, and thinking you're the best thing since apple pie?
Uuuuuuhhhhh. . . . . . .. maybe I do. Again, I have problems.
So anyway, OBVIOUSLY, I have a need for this woman who gave birth to the most important person in my world, to like me. Which, as I've said before, she does, but I am still neurotic an insecure about it. So I am forced to do things like make a slightly strange Peppermint Pie for Christmas dinner (because her favorite candy is peppermint) that everybody refuses to touch. Or spout off bights of wisdom at a Sunday dinner, to prove my intellectual superiority (not). Or give her a list of "100 rules to follow" when watching my children, her grandchildren, to prove that I am a good mother. I could go on and on.
My latest transgression, where my mother in law is concerned involves my choice of pie to bring to Easter dinner.
While shopping in our local grocery store (H-E-B in case you wanna buy this pie) Shelbi and I sampled the most wonderful pie IN THE UNIVERSE. I do not say this lightly. It was a Fresh Strawberry Pie. I don't even like strawberry pie, but this one was heavenly. Fresh strawberries in cloud of a slightly dense whipped cream drizzled with glaze, and a slight crunch of nuts that were sprinkled on top. Damn! It was good. . . and. . . .. .it was on sale. $5.99. You can't even make it that cheap. I don't even have to think about this. Right? Easy, peasy.
SELF: Buy this pie. It is delicious. Everyone will love it. Strawberries are very Eastery.
EGO: Are you kidding me? Nothing in life is easy. Show your worth, girl. You better make that pie. What kinda wife are you?
SELF: A very good one, thank you VERY MUCH! Anyway, it's cheaper to buy the pie. And even if I wanted to make it, I don't have the recipe, so I can't!
EGO: How hard can it be? Just pick up some whipping cream, and go ask the baker what he did. I know it'll take you a lot longer to make than buying it. And I know that it appears as if GOD put this pie here for you on this day because you are soooooooooo busy, and could use a break, but come on, make it anyway. I'm sure your in-laws would prefer a less superior pie than the one you can buy, because you made it. Come; make life harder on yourself than it needs to be.
So, what did I do? *shakes her head in utter disappointment* I made the pie.*sigh*
Was it as good as the grocery store pie? NO.
I mean, it was good. Dare I say, really good, but the H-E-B pie was better.
Why do I torment myself needlessly trying to prove to people that I am good enough? No, seriously, why? That's not rhetorical, I really want to know. Please comment below.
Fresh Strawberry Pie
1 nine inch pastry shell
2 pounds of strawberries, washed and hulled (you’ll have extra)
8 oz. (more if you like A LOT of whipped cream) whipping cream
3 TB powdered sugar
½ cup granulated sugar
1 ½ tsp cornstarch
¼ cup water
1 TB butter or margarine
Red food coloring, optional
4 oz. of vanilla pudding (I used a snack sized pre-made pudding)
1. Bake pie crust according to manufacturer’s directions. Cool.
2. Wash and hull your strawberries making sure the do not sit in the water, so that they do not absorb the water and make your pie soggy.
3. Mash enough strawberries to make ½ cup of pulp.
4. In a small saucepan, combine sugar, water, and cornstarch. Stir continuously, and cook over medium heat until translucent and boiling. Add strawberry pulp and butter. Remove from heat. If desired add 5-10 drops of red food coloring. Cool.
5. Meanwhile, determine how many strawberries you’ll need to fill your crust. Slice the strawberries in half. Set aside.
6. In a medium sized bowl, whip the cream until soft peaks form. Add sugar, and continue to whip until peaks stiffen. Remove half of the whipped cream and set aside for garnish.
7. Fold vanilla pudding into the whipped cream. Add hulled and sliced strawberries. Pour into pie crust.
8. Place approximately 10 (depending on the size) whole strawberries in the center of the pie. Cover with cooled glaze.
9. Spread the remaining whipped cream around the edge of the pie. Sprinkle with crushed nuts. Serve.