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Obstacles and opportunities


I’ve been having a pie crust problem lately. No, it’s not the calories. It’s not even the Crisco/butter/lard dilemma.

It’s the quantities. It used to be that a cup of flour and 1/3 cup fat was enough for a single-crust pie, and double that made a two-crust pie.

It’s not working out that way anymore. Every pie I make, I run out of dough, and find myself patching and hoping and making do. I suspect it’s the flour.

Happened again the day before Thanksgiving.

I planned to make an apple pie and a pumpkin pie. Three cups flour, one cup fat. Made enough for two crusts. One for the pumpkin––great.  But what about my planned two-crust apple pie?

I took a poll, and making a streusel topping won out over making more pie crust. 

I have two streusel recipes–one calls for oats, and one doesn’t. I couldn’t find either one of them.

Frustrated, I reached for How to Cook Everything––and discovered that Mark Bittman’s streusel recipe calls for pecans! Yum! Brilliant.

The apple pie was amazing. Sure, it would have been delicious with a plain crust, too. But without running into obstacles with the crust and the missing streusel recipes, we would not have had such a special, festive pie.



2 thoughts on “Obstacles and opportunities

  1. Have you considered weighing your flour? Although I don’t cook that often, I’ve logged a lot of hours watching ‘Good Eats.’ Alton Brown always recommends weighing to get an accurate measure of flour. Otherwise, you can’t be sure how densely the flour is packed inside your measuring cup.

    • That’s a good idea, Matt. I don’t have a scale–maybe it should go on my Christmas list! I’ve also been wondering if the gluten in the flour I’m using is part of the problem–not enough gluten, too much, etc.

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