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Saturday, July 3, 2010

Lemonade Pie

Today is Saturday July 3rd, and to celebrate Independence Day, I started my day with a nice walk.  Our local hospital (with other local businesses) sponsors a Cancer Awareness and Treatment (CAT) 5K run and fun walk.  As a cancer survivor, I have participated for the last seven years, usually walking.  I arrived at the location of the walk at 8:15 am in time for a group photograph of all the attending cancer survivors along with a seated Oregon Senator, Ron Wyden.

After the photo’s I stretched before the walk started to try to alleviate the shin splints that occur when I really walk fast (4.5 mph and faster).  Though I knew today, I would be walking slower because I strained one of my feet during a hike last weekend.  The day was cool and sunny with scattered clouds so it was a great morning for a walk.  I finished my 3.2-mile walk at exactly 45 minutes, so just a little faster than 4 mph – not bad!  After the walk, I met up with some of our friends to watch the annual Hillsboro 4th of July parade. 

Later that afternoon we were invited to some friends for a potluck picnic.  The hosts would supply the hamburgers and hotdogs as well as drinks and asked each family to bring a dish.  I decided that a dessert was in order and started looking through my supply of new recipes I would like to try.  I just received a new issue of Cuisine at Home for August, and near the back of the issue was the recipe for Lemonade Pie.

I decided that Lemonade Pie was the perfect dessert to make for a potentially warm July day.  I had to take a trip to the store to purchase a 12 ounce can of frozen lemonade concentrate, a box of vanilla wafers, and some fresh raspberries.  Before I left home, I put a can of condensed milk in the refrigerator to cool for the pie filling.

I started by getting out our spring form pan and giving it a coating of cooking spray.  Then I started to make the crust by using our food processor to course grind 9 ounces of vanilla wafers.  Into the ground cookies, I added six tablespoons of melted butter, and then pulsed the food processor to combine the butter into the cookies.  The recipe calls for 1/4 cups of fresh mint leaves, I couldn’t find any so I left them out.  I dumped the crust into the spring form pan and used a plastic cup (with straight bottom and sides) to form the crust up the side and across the bottom of the pan in an even coating. 

I had to heat the lower oven of our range to 375 degrees because the large upper oven was busy cooking the pork shoulder.  I baked the crust for 9 minutes until it started to brown, and then removed it from the oven to cool.

The next thing to make was the raspberry sauce that swirls into the top.  I debated about using some seedless jam for this step, but my wife reminded me that I was making this from scratch, so I followed the printed recipe.  I started with dumping two pints of raspberries (12 ounces) into a mixing bowl with three tablespoons of sugar.  I used the blade attachment on our hand wand to puree the raspberries and sugar. 

Once that was finished, I set our fine mesh wire strainer over a small saucepan and poured the raspberry mixture into the strainer.  It took me about five minute using a spatula to press all the raspberry pulp through the strainer, leaving just the seeds behind.  I put the saucepan on the stovetop over medium-high heat until it boiled.  While the raspberry sauce was heating, I mixed two tablespoons of cornstarch in two tablespoons of water and stirred to combine.  Once the sauce came to a boil, I added the cornstarch solution.  Oops, I see lumps of cornstarch that didn’t get mixed swirling in the sauce.  I boiled the sauce for about two minutes while whisking trying to break up the cornstarch lumps, but I ended up removing the lumps with a spoon.  Once the sauce boiled for at least one minute, then I transferred it to a bowl, covered it with plastic wrap, and placed the bowl in the refrigerator to cool.

To start the pie filling, I got out a large mixing bowl and added two cups of whipping cream, three tablespoons of sugar, and one tablespoon of vanilla extract.  I used the whisk attachment on our hand wand to whip the cream to stiff peaks.

In another mixing bowl, I added the frozen lemonade concentrate and the chilled contents of the can of evaporated milk and hand whisked the two ingredients together.  Whisking the cool evaporated milk was like mixing tar; it was very thick and took some work to get the two mixed.

I transferred the lemonade mixture to a medium metal mixing bowl then folded in the whipped cream.  Once the pie filling was mixed, I poured it into the cooled piecrust and spread it around with a spatula to make an even layer.  Now comes the fun of dropping several spoonfuls of the raspberry sauce onto the top of the pie filling, then using a knife to swirl the sauce around the top of the pie to make a marble effect.  I covered the finished pie with plastic wrap and placed it in our freezer (for at least 8 hours) to solidify.  I was surprised that the recipe calls for making so much of the raspberry sauce as I only used about 1/4 on the pie.  I guess we will have the rest of the sauce over vanilla ice cream.

When we arrived at the picnic, I place the pie in the refrigerator to soften until it was time to serve.  When it was time for dessert, I removed the outside of the pan and used a long knife to cut individual pieces, pausing between each cut to rinse the knife under cold water.

The pie was wonderful and everyone enjoyed their piece.  The vanilla wafer crust was a nice change from the typical gram cracker crust found on other pies.  The pie filling had a sweet, yet tart flavor and the raspberry added a nice change in flavors as well as made the filling visually appealing.  Be sure to put any leftover pie back in the freezer to store until eaten, in the refrigerator it gets just a little too soft.

I was very pleased with the results of this recipe and will make it again when hosting a group of people on a warm summer day.

Adventures In Food: Author: Kerry Howell

1 comment:

  1. Great recipe, Kerry. It was fun and easy to make and visually appealing. A refreshing dessert on a hot summer day. Next time I make it I think I will increase the whipped cream and reduce the lemonade to half. It was a tad bit too sour for my taste. Thanks for sharing! I love your blog! Michelle Fox