Thursday, October 06, 2005

Apple Raspberry Pie with Crushed Almond Crust

When I first started cooking, recipes existed in a galaxy far, far away. As a child I would help my mom, who always salted to taste and added ingredients as she saw fit, with the cooking. This, in my mind, was how people cooked. Mom (Sheila) owned her fair share of cookbooks, but they acted more as a reference or source of inspiration than as concrete dogma. This way of cooking is in my blood.

I mention all this because over the past few years I've wanted to make certain things that required more than good intuition. Gourmet things, like creme fraiche or pasta puttanesca (for a good time, look up the meaning of that word), which required the accumulation of several cookbooks as well as subscriptions to cooking magazines. When my husband and I recently moved to Palo Alto, in an effort to save space and as an exercise in selection, we decided to limit ourselves to four cookbooks.

While this isn't a first in my cooking experience, this week I found these two worlds collide. I found some delicious fuji apples (my current favorite), and wanted to make them into a pie with an almond crust. I found the crust recipe in my trusted Craig Claiborne, but couldn't figure out how to make the apples work with it--Craig offered no advice! And the other cookbooks were of little help. Rather than seek information online (perhaps the logical, left brain choice), I happily reverted to my old ways and rediscovered the drama that can exist in a kitchen. I can't say that this was the BEST pie ever, but it was creative and pretty tasty.


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