Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Strawberry-Mango Pie

Do you see that there? The above picture? What does that look like to you? Delicious, perfect, awesome pie, right? Now scroll down a few entries and take a look at that failurepie. This, my friends, is why you don't try to help your sexy awesome ex-girlfriend (who has great hair, by the way, just throwing that out there) do a basketweave pie crust and claim to know what you're doing. Because you don't, because LOOK AT THAT UP THERE. Just LOOK at how AMAZING that basketweave looks. That is how it is done, my friends. That pie is a thing of beauty and grace that could have only been crafted by the hands of an angel such as myself. I mean --
Does that basketweave not bring a tear to your eye? Does it not want to make you weep like a little schoolgirl with pigtails and a pink backpack? I'm thinking it does, so don't lie.

Okay so about the actual pie, it kind of wasn't that great, but it was totes that mango's fault. I blame the mangoes for this pie getting a B instead of an A. The problem was that they simply weren't ripe enough. I also elected to use champagne mangoes, because the guy at Whole Foods seemed to know what he was talking about, and actually let my friend and me try one. Mostly it was just because he was obviously hitting on my friend, who is way hot, but that's beside the point. He also let us try a passion fruit, which was quite an odd experience, but that's also beside the point. My point in the pointless tangents is that it's really great to have hot friends because you sometimes get free things out of it. So thanks, Kristin. Anyway.
So the champagne mangoes were not ripe enough, and also a little too tart for the pie, which I added hardly any sugar to anyway, so bottom line, the pie was just not sweet enough, and the mango chunks too tough. Next time I would use regular mangoes (whichever kind that grocery stores besides Whole Foods sell) and a little more sugar thrown in there.
I'm formatting my recipes differently, thanks to feedback from the one person who actually reads this thing, so let's get down to biz:
1/2 C. cold shortening
Ice water (6 T. plus more)
2.5 C. flour
1 T. salt
2 T. sugar
3/4 C. frozen margarine
As I've discussed in this blog in the past, it is pretty important to get as much stuff for your pie crust as possible cold before starting and do it as fast as you can, kneading as little as possible. This is you get little pockets of shortening in your crust that burst in the oven and make the crust all flaky goodness. I literally put everything that went into or touched the crust in the fridge first. The bowls, the utensils, etc.
Start by dropping the shortening in pieces into the ice water.
Mix together the dry ingredients. Cut in the shortening and margarine until the mixture is like cornmeal -- gritty, with small pebbles of the shortening and margarine (these pebbles end up being the flakiest parts).
Sprinkle the 6 T. water over the mixture and gently fold with a spatula just until a dough ball forms. Don't knead it any more or the crust will be tough and not deliciously flaky like pie dough deserves to be.
Divide the dough into two balls and flatten into 4-inch wide disks. Dust with flour and refrigerate on a cookie sheet for 30 mins. Meanwhile, get your filling together. When the dough is ready, roll out to be 1/8 inch thick. Place one in the bottom of the pie pan. Take the other and cut it into strips. I could go into great detail about how to do a latticework top like my thing of awe-inspiring beauty up there, but I think I'll do a pictorial on that at some later date. If you want to cheat, just lay half the strips one way, then lay the other half on top of them going the other way.
2 mangoes cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 T. flour
1 t. brown sugar
10-15 sliced strawberries
Toss the mangoes with the flour and brown sugar. Pour into crust. Arrange the strawberries on top of the mangoes. You can make it look really pretty and leave the pie open-faced if you're intimidated by my lattice work up there and are afraid to attempt a top crust yourself. It's okay, I understand.

Cover with tin foil. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes.

Served with vegan coconut milk ice cream, which seriously is better than regular ice cream

Next up: Earl Grey cupcakes

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