Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Of Food and Flowers and Pie Crust Success

 


In my garden today the Rudbeckias shine their bright faces, oblivious to all that is going on in the world. 


A fat pumpkin is growing more golden each day, maturing with a few scars and bumps as all of us do. This one has escaped the bed and sits fatly in the path between the raised beds. It will make some delicious pies and soups in a month or so. 


Zucchini is prolific, and so versatile. This week I made a Cheesy Savoury Zucchini Bread and it is delicious. I made two loaves and froze one. It's a quick bread, great with soup, or sliced and toasted and covered with cream cheese or chopped tomatoes. 


On the same site JustCrumbs, I found these zucchini tots - also delicious. I know that some people complain about too much zucchini, but I love it in almost every form, although I don't bake sweets with it. 


Dahlias are such amazing flowers, so symmetrical yet in such variety of form. This is an unknown dinner plate variety that stays in the ground year round and comes up faithfully each spring. 

Since returning from our little trip to the west coast of the Island, I've been puttering in the kitchen. With the fallen apples from our trees I canned 4 pints of applesauce. Green beans are frozen for vegetable soups. Today I'm cooking beets. Late summer is such an abundant time of year. I'm happy to report that I've had a few ripe tomatoes at long last, but the squirrels seem to like taking bites from them. Grrrr! 

Pie crust has been my nemesis for years. I've tried all the tricks - ice cold butter, grated - lard - shortening - ice water - you name it, I've tried it. My pie crusts were tough and almost inedible no matter how lightly I tried to treat the dough. A couple of months ago I watched one of Canada's premier bakers offer her take on successful pastry. It's revolutionary. Anna Olsen is a genius! She mixes a small amount of vegetable oil into the flour before cutting in the butter. I was skeptical given my past attempts at pastry, but it works. Success! Hooray! 

My most recent pastry bake was a Peach Cherry Galette. Pastry rolled to an approximate 16 inch circle, topped with peeled and cut peaches, pitted cherries, 1/2 cup sugar and 1/4 cup flour, leaving a wide border for folding in. Brush the crust with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Bake at 375 degrees until the pastry is golden and the filling bubbly - 45-60 minutes. Towards the end of the baking I sprinkled some leftover almond praline over the fruit. 

There will be more pies in the future and I think my husband will be quite happy about that! 

Edited to add: I've lived in a few different countries and found that flour differs considerably. The quantity of ingredients that Anna provides work well in Canada. 

Have a most wonderful day!


30 comments:

  1. What a delicious looking galette. I remember how different flour was in France, it took me a while to adapt recipes.
    Your Dahlia does look so like my Cafe au Lait, tall and with huge flowers. I'm going to try the courgette /Zucchini recipe , it is so good to have a savoury change.
    Autumn seems to have rushed in here. The seasons are all running in together.

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  2. Thank you for the link to zucchini tots! I wrote down the recipe. They look delicious!
    The galette is beautiful. The peaches here have been great this year. A peach galette piled high with real whip cream is in my thoughts.
    Pie crust, I knew woman that puts milk in her pie crust, making it right in the pan. Amazing to watch, her pie crust was always perfect.

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  3. it looks delicious. Getting a good pie crust is not as easy as it looks.

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  4. First photo... We call them "Black Eyed Susans"....

    Yes, look to nature, for calming views...

    🍂🍁🍂

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  5. Not nice of me to brag but....

    I have always been able to make delicious pie crusts.

    ~smile~

    🍂🍁🍂

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  6. I’m definitely going to check out that cheesy zucchini bread. Lots to love in your garden :). B x

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  7. Such autumnal photos! Harvest and rudbeckias! Your galette looks scrumptious. I love the fall flavours.

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  8. Your lovely images have some serious fall vibes. I didn't know that you grown your own pumpkins! I heard that Starbucks released their Pumpkin Spice Latte today? I need the weather to cool down before I crack open my pumpkin chai!

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  9. Your rustic pie looks wonderful. Around here it's the menfolk that make the pie dough...either middle son or my DH. I'm going to take a peek at the zucchini quick bread recipe. Something different from the usual sweet loaf.

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  10. Lots of delicious goodies here. I'm going to go back and check out the recipe for the savory loaf. Congrats on finding the right pie crust recipe! Hope the rest of the week goes well.

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  11. Lovely post as always and I will definitely be trying your pastry recipe tip as although I have been cooking for more than half a century I have never been able to make good pastry even though my other baking has been fine and I plan to include your courgette recipe to my repetoire soon too. Thanks for that and thanks too for the lovely photos and your words about the pumpkin having grown with a few bumps and scars along the way as do we all!!

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  12. Delicious bakings! In the previous years I grew giant pumpkins, if I remember correctly the biggest one weighed over 40 kilos! I made jam with apricots, it was really tasty. Your late summmer flowers please the eye. Wishing a fine week Lorrie.

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  14. The galette looks amazing, delicious. I love the idea of the zuchinni cheesy bread with soup, wonderful. So nice to see the dahlias, such a welcome sight in any garden.

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  15. Yeah for the pie crust success! Thanks for the recipe for the zucchini cheese bread!

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  16. Hello from Ontario. Today's post is a real treat. I have already looked up Anna's recipe and also found one for a 'mix in the pan' pasty mentioned above by Salty Pumpkin Studio. I too,
    have always struggled with pastry. Thank you for the inspiration!

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  17. It is a thrill to conquer something that has been a challenge, doesn't it? Yay for delicious pies from your kitchen!

    Love your redbeckia and your orange pumpkin . . . all the late summer/Septembery feels!

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  18. Hello :) i wrote down you zucchini tots recipe and will share it
    Have a wonderfilled day Pattitatts

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  19. Certainly a 'delicious post' Lorrie. I love zucchini too, in fact any member of the squash family really. Anxious for some good eating pumpkins come fall, and of course fresh butternut and acorn squash from local farms - the store-bought ones are not so flavorful at this time of year.
    Your flowers are so pretty - love the dahlia.
    The pastry tip sounds interesting - I must give that a go!

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  20. The cheesy zucchini bread sounds delicious. I have a large pile of them waiting to be used, so tomorrow I will give your bread a try. At the moment I have overload with so many different fruits and veg to be used - lots of plums, tomatoes, runner beans and strawberries. Why do they all come at once?

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  21. Hello! Just came across your cute blog! LOVE your photos and take on the beauty of life! The pies sound delicious! Cheers from Connecticut!
    I have my own blog if you're interested,
    www.theartofhomegrown.com

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  22. I’m on vacation right now but you have me thinking about baking! The rustic pie and the bread both look so yummy!

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  23. Good morning, Lorrie. Your photos are so lovely and the recipes sound delicious. I am going to make the zucchini tots this weekend. We love zucchini and all that can be enjoyed by it. I had a neighbor in Virginia who would batter and deep fry the zucchini blossoms. They were outstanding.
    Happy you had success with pie crust. I can tell you it is not one of my favorite things to tackle. Sometimes it is great and other times dreadful. Even when I do it the same way.
    Enjoy these remaining summer days!

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  24. Oh those sweet rustic gallettte
    s!

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  25. Your galette looks amazing. I'm off to look at Anna's pie recipe video.

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  26. Okay... I love your dahlia and am wondering how to grow them in my garden. The black eyed Susans are so pretty at this time.. and you have the correct name for them. Those Latin names... I got a list of them from the landscaper and I had to google them to see what they were. It is a great feeling to be able to get that crust right. Just a small hint from one baker to another ;) since too much water makes for a tough crust, the oil adds that liquid you felt you needed, without toughening it. I am so often tempted to add more water if it doesnt hold together, but most of the time it gets there if I keep moving that fork in circles. You are so right about the flour being different in different countries.

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  27. Your dahlia picture looks like an oil painting! Your photos are always outstanding. I want to try the zucchini recipes, they look yummy. Pie crusts like to dare us to succeed, don't they? I've never heard of this method but will try it. A little ice cold vodka mixed with water usually assures me of a tender crust but I've had that fail too. Yours looks wonderful!

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  28. Lorrie - thanks for your visit to my blog today! And hallelujah for some tried and true zucchini recipes - we still have a fat, long zucchini from our friends and your recipes are a God-send! Happy you found pastry success at long last! Enjoy your weekend!

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  29. What a wonderful post, Lorrie! First the reader is greeted by the cheerful Rudbeckias and the chubby pumpkin - and then your baking... Once more I have to say that your family members must be happy people, with all those beautiful, tasty and healthy treats you make.
    Have a lovely weekend!

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  30. I had to smile about your pie crust comments. So many tell me they can't make pie crust. I grew up with women that made pies, so guess it is in my blood. I told my grandson recently that I was going to teach him to bake an apple pie. We have a date this coming Friday to bake our first pie. I figured I had better start now while he was young and I could still do it.

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