Tuesday, November 19, 2019

looks bad, tastes good

Okay, the slice of pie doesn't look all that bad, but the pie as a whole still looks kind of rough. It tastes fantastic, though. If I have a complaint, it's that the crust could afford to be just a wee bit thinner. That's funny because I did make an effort to roll the pie dough pretty damn thin, but it thickened up in the oven, anyway, as you see below:

My coworkers didn't mind the look of the pie, despite its motnani (못난이, ugly, misbegotten) appearance. Taste-wise, the pie tastes like a classic apple pie, so I guess that's a win. One interesting thing I noticed as I rifled through many online apple-pie recipes was that there was very little divergence from a classic formula for pie filling, which looks something like this:

6-7 cups peeled, cored, thinly sliced apples
1/2 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
big spritz lemon juice (approx. 1 tsp.)
1 heaping tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp. ginger
1 heaping tbsp. flour or cornstarch

Recipes will vary slightly in proportions, and some will add things like cloves or allspice to the list of spices, but for the most part, what you see above is the bog-standard ingredients list for what Eric Cartman would call eppel peh.

Pride compels me to mention that I've made pie filling dozens of times—just never a complete pie before. I can eyeball the assembly of pie filling with no problem, but a nagging voice in my head made we want to check myself against the standard recipes just to be sure I wasn't screwing this whole thing up. I wasn't.

So, as Charles mentioned in a comment, I need to get back to crimping my pie shells to make a decent seal. Since I seem to be good at fork-crimping, I'll stick with that technique until, one day, I'm more comfortable with finger-crimping.

Oh, yes: did the docking and blind-baking help the pie's bottom crust at all? I'd say no; the crust doesn't appear to be any different from previous crusts for my savory pies, so as I'd written before, I'm not at all convinced these are necessary steps.

EPILOGUE, 7:27 p.m.: my supervisor stepped into the office about 45 minutes ago. I offered him a slice of pie. He bit into it, then gave me a surprised look and said this was the best apple pie he'd ever had in Korea. "You should sell this!" he exclaimed. I was actually a bit taken aback because this was a first-ever attempt, and neither the pie dough nor the filling were from recipes original to me, so the supervisor's praise didn't feel deserved. All I can take credit for is putting the thing together and seeing it to completion (more or less). That said, it's awesome to receive such a compliment, which is in the spirit of previous compliments along the lines of, "You should start your own restaurant." Yeah, baby. Call me Tart Bae.

So where da wimmin at?


Charles said...

Not surprised about the docking/blind-baking. My experience has been similar. Like I said in the previous post, it obviously matters if you are using a filling that isn't getting baked, but otherwise I don't think it's worth the trouble.

Glad to hear it came out tasty, and looking forward to trying Mark II. Truth is, pie is not fancy. Pie can be butt ugly and it just ends up adding to the "rustic charm." All that matters is: Does it taste good?

Kevin Kim said...

I can tell you've heard the joke, which I heard a few times from different chefs on the Food Network, that "If it comes out looking ugly, just call it 'rustic.'"

John Mac said...

Rustic or not, it looks damn good to me. And don't be shy about accepting taste praise, but for you, that pie would not exist! People are always telling me how great "my" brownies taste. With a little help from Betty Crocker...