I have many of my grandma’s recipes. These recipes are so dear to my heart. They bring back tons of wonderful memories. I can’t help but think back on the many, many years that I watched her cook, watched her use a half an egg shell as a measurement, use her fingers to pinch in this and pinch in that, and I don’t know how, but her homemade noodles came out the very same thickness every single time.
She usually started cooking the sweets a few weeks before Christmas. Her house was older and the upstairs didn’t have heat so she would put all the bars, fudge, pies…everything on the steps going to the upstairs. Me, my sister and cousins would head straight for those stairs when we visited grandma. If we visited before the holiday, we still went straight for the stairs because we just knew something good was there. And when we dug into it, she never once told us to wait for Christmas. She just made more.
One of the things she made was creme pie. So, a couple weeks ago, I decided to give it a whirl. Grandma’s homemade pie crust and all! So, I did the pie crust according to directions and dagnabbit if the darn thing didn’t separate on me. I rolled, added more water, rolled again, added flour, rolled again…. I even talked to it, “Please pie crust! All I want is to make you like my grandma! If I can’t do it, who will?” Then it got a little uglier with, “What is wrong with you!!!??? Stick together for crying out loud!” It was me vs. grandma’s pie crust…and this round, went to the pie crust. I ended up just piecing it together in the pie dish and in one of those ‘to heck with it’ ways. There were no perfectly even sides, no nicely pinched crust. Thursey walked by, and said, “What is that?” Sigh.
So, I went on to do the creme, the meringue topping and put it in the oven. While it was baking, I called grandma and told her my pie crust woes. Grandma, just a matter of factly said, “Shawni, you didn’t have it wet enough.” Sigh again.
So, it came out of the oven…the crust wasn’t cooked (I was suppose to cook it before the filling went in), the meringue was super high (I think the egg whites might make two pies or I beat them too long), the middle was yummy but runny (maybe I didn’t let it sit long enough to cool or didn’t thicken the creme long enough on the stove), so in short, compared to my grandma’s creme pie, mine was an utter disaster. But, the attempt brought back so many great memories and I can’t help but laugh at how my grandma advises me like….duh.
Someday, I will make grandma’s pie crust…and I will keep trying until I can tell the kiddos, “this is exactly how grandma made it.”
Have a wonderful holiday everyone! Put love into everything you do!