So I figured there were going to be some pies at this event, but there was a full slip n slide's length of pies both savory and sweet. Some people made hand pies, which are awesome because you can pick them up without getting pie all over your fingers, and some people had drinks with theirs (Negronis and strawberry margaritas to name two).
The finger food that I neglected to take pictures of was great. Bacon-wrapped dates with cheese were my favorite. Chef Tagere has an sweet kitchen that I wish I got to visit every day.
As I prepared for this day... and I use the word prepared lightly, because, while I had all of my ingredients beforehand, I didn't really start cooking the pie parts till this morning. Plus I still had to all my codey code typey job stuff in between (more like most of the day I had to work and how these even came out of the oven at 5pm is a mystery to me).
So I had this idea that I'd make a sweet potato pie, but then I saw someone else was making one so I had to add stuff to it. This stuff happened to be nuts... covered in maple, but still nuts and I'm assuming there were nut allergies all over the place, because I still have half of this pie. It also didn't seem to want to set for me, the crust decided it wanted to hide under the filling and I keep rocking myself and saying "at least it tastes good" to make the day ok. I was going to put a full on pecan pie on top of the sweet potato pie, but ran out of time. Instead I toasted the pecans in a cast iron pan with butter and added them to a pan of reduced maple syrup + butter and cream.
The pie I agonized over because I couldn't seem to get the filling to taste right to me was a big hit though. I ran out of everything I normally use so I ended up throwing a whole combination of things I've never put together in a dish. Notice how I forgot to add the K in Pork and didn't notice until after I took all my pictures. I grabbed a sharpie and corrected my mistake before people started to chow down because, God forbid, I have a mis-spelling and someone throws a pie pan at my head (This is what I imagine happening when I screw up something. Replace pie pan with any painful kitchen thing).
Anyhoo... there were a metric ton of pies and I didn't get a lot of pictures, but here's one savory and one sweet:
Sweet Potato Pie w/ Maple Pecans.
I've done my sweet potato pie before (but I can't remember if I put the recipe down). Anyway it's reallllly simple.
I bake a bunch of garnet yams from Whole Foods because they're delicious. Then I put the hot yams in my blender with a stick or more of butter and cream, and I make a drinkable-right-there-if you're-a-fat-kid-like-me puree.
Then I add sugar, vanilla, cinnamon, nutmeg, a dash of cayenne, some pumpkin pie spice, salt, and enough eggs to set it. Sometimes I throw in flour too.
Dump this into your crust and bake till it sets and the middle loses its jiggle. Don't top it if you like, I normally eat it as-is.
Braised Pork Pot Pie
- 8lb bone in pork roast (you'll have a bunch of leftovers for stuff n things)
- seasonings to taste
- 1 large or 2 small Yukon Gold potatoes
- I large onion chopped
- 6 cloves of garlic smashed
- 2 bell peppers (whatever color you like)
- 4 medium carrots chopped
- salt & pepper to taste
- cornbread batter (see below)
- cheese (I used sharp and extra sharp cheddar)
So there's this cut of meat at Fresh Direct. It's called, um, "Bone in Boston Butt Pork Roast" This is an awesome cut of meat because you can really do anything to it for hours, it still likes you in the morning, and won't call the cops.
Last time I braised this pork I had some of the amazing fennel pollen salt from Porchetta to smother all over it. This time I stuck with some adobo, Berbere seasoning from Spices and Tease, cracked pepper, cayenne, two cinnamon sticks, bay leaves and garlic powder for the dry ingredients. I halved a large sweet onion, dropped a dozen garlic cloves, threw in a few sprigs of thyme in and poured an Aranciata over top the whole thing (warning if you have a smaller pan this makes the dry stuff fizzy bubble all over the place. Also I did this because last time I used tangerine juice and I was out).
Then I set my oven to 300 and stuck that sucker in there till it begged for mercy. You'll know it's done when you try to take it out of the pot and it starts to fall off the bone. This should be in about 3-6+ hours depending on how big the roast is.
I took the meat out of the pot and set it aside to cool, then placed it in the fridge. All that swishy liquid left over got poured into a small saucepan that I stuck in the freezer to separate the fat from the good stuff. Once this was done I reduced the jellied liquid to almost a smear at the bottom of the pan and added butter + cream to it.
In the pan I roasted the pork in, I sauteed a bunch of onions, garlic, carrots, red/yellow bell pepper, and one big yukon gold potato. I added over half the meat from the roast after shredding/chopping, and let that bubble for a while. I kept adding things in my pantry until it tasted "ok" to me, so I have no idea how to describe that other than it included salt, some chili powder, two drops of liquid smoke, the last drop of Worcestershire sauce out of my empty bottle, and a pinch of Mighty Edible's jerk seasoning. Once the potatoes were cooked almost through I added the reduction to it and spread the mixture in a pan.
Then the cheese shredding began and ended in about 2 minutes. I bought a large bag of shredded cheddar cheese because I knew I wouldn't have time to shred the full block of extra sharp I'd bought for the purpose. I sprinkled a bit of cheese on top of the meat mixture and reserved the rest for the cornbread.
The cornbread recipe is pretty simple.
- 1 1/3 cup cornmeal
- 1 1/3 cup corn flour (I sort of combined the two, could have left out the APF completely)
- handful of all purpose flour
- 1 package of super sweet corn kernels thawed
- 2 eggs
- 2 tablespoons baking powder
- 1/8th teaspoon baking soda
- 2 tablespoons maple syrup
- a dash of sugar
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 stick of butter
- 1 1/4th cup cream/milk (approximately)
- 1-2 cups shredded cheese depending on how naughty you're feeling.
Mix the dry stuff, mix the wet stuff, smash em together then add the corn kernels and cheddar cheese. Pour this over the pot pie filling and bake till it bubbles and the cornbread is golden brown.