Scaled Empanada?

During my college years I had a huge craving over empanadas. This is mainly because the only type of empanadas I get are those that you can buy on train stations and filled with unknown types of meats. Yumpanada. Say it again… Yumpanada…

YUM + Empanada?

I have to admit, they were pretty satisfying. The 20 pesos I spend for 4 mini empanadas is enough to last me until the next station. But somehow, I feel there’s something lacking. I have tasted better empanadas from my childhood and I wanted to taste them again but I don’t know how. Seriously, I don’t even know if it was a dream. All I have is this vague image of me biting a very flaky and tasty empanada. The crust got me hypnotized. Am I the only one who can taste in their dream?

My favorite blog is, of course, MarketManila. His posts are very entertaining and he responds to emails! I read his blogs often hoping to find tips and inspiration.

So I was casually browsing his site and I got a little bored so I searched his site a bit and found a post about empanadas. I found his empanadas a bit weird. We all know how empanadas look like right? But his has this scale-like surface!

 

DRAGON SCALE!

Yes! Scales! Although his post was about how he felt challenged by the empanadas and how he kind of failed on making them, I thought they looked great! One look and you know it’s flaky! He didn’t give the exact recipe but his pictures show how to do it. But I can’t just blind shoot there, I need some kind of guide.

So I searched google for… scale empanadas. I failed. Not until I read the comments and found that it ‘s actually called “Empanada de Kaliskis!” I hurriedly searched the net and clicked on the first link that appeared! I raged on how easy it is so I got the ball rolling immediately!

 

Picture Related

 

The recipe calls for 2 types of dough, a water dough and an oil dough. Obviously water dough has water and oil dough has oil. Duh…

 

Oil and water don't fucking mix.

 

Then closed and folded together, puff pastry style!

 

 

I'm Filipino! Not French!

Folded it a few more times and flattened it.

 

 

64 FREAKING LAYERS

If we counted it correctly, I’d say we have 64 layers of fat and dough there. Equal to 64 chestpains.

 

 

THEY SEE ME ROLLIN. THEY HATIN.

Rolled the dough into a log and cut them into half an inch disks.

 

Cross section

Cross section. How many layers?

You can see how the layers are distinctly separated by the pork fat. How many layers are there?

 

Leonidas and Vegeta fusion.

Filled it with random odds ad ends of our refrigirator.

 

 

Let's see... Pork, beef, chicken, eggs, shell, nuts, bolts, screws and the fucking kitchen sink.

Crimped it, friend it…

 

 

FAYUL!

 

Fat in fat.

The solo uncooked empanada up there was actually meant for my practice. I can’t do the rope braid pretty well so I had to do it numbers of times before I got it right. The next picture your going to see is actually the end product of my rope braid practice.

 

 

Can it get any flakier than that? 😀

 

I jumped of joy when I saw that the layers actually looked like the way it should! I was carefully watching the pot while this trial empanada was frying and got a bit worried since I can’t see any layers. But hell yeah, the god of empanada must have smiled below the pork fat laden clouds to greet this god-assisted creation!

But I heard his phone rang and he got busy. So my following empanadas did not really looked like it was made from pure fucking win. But hey, my rope crimping skills are kind of improving!

 

"A bit more," the Gods said. Then the heavens opened.

My following empanadas ranged from “They’re kinda… ok.”

 

Mhm...

To “they’re kinda oily…”

 

 

Not all that glistens is gold. Most of the time, it's fat.

To downright ugly!

 

 

DAAAAAAAAAAAYM!

What the fuck went wrong?

 

 

Beats me...

No, but seriously I think it has to do something with the temp. Probably because my following  empanadas took too long for me to make them all, the fat probably melted and fucked up the layers, the sun loves us after all. Also, I find the layers toooooooo delicate for my liking. Ye, it tastes good, very flaky and flavorful but it’s just too brittle. They layers can crash by just the force of my tongs while getting them out of the pan.

The force of my thongs.

Also, the crust is just tooooooooooo darn flaky. It became too oily. The fat from the dough melts and the fat from frying seeps in between the layers. It kinda feels like eating a whole bar of butter… not that I have done that before…

 

 

The bar has just been fucking set!

The next time, I’ll reduce the number of layers and will try to bake them to reduce the fat involved. When is that next time? Tomorrow. You know why?

 

 

BECAUSE IT'S FUCKING FRIDAY, BITCH!

 

Yesterday was Thursday, today is Friday and tomorrow is fucking Saturday. Thanks Rebecca Black for that wonderful realization.

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It all started with a Blow.

It all started with a blow torch.

I just love it on how some chefs incorporate power tools into cooking. Like how Ming Tsai used an air compressor to make Peking Duck in an hour, or how a Band Saw looks like a modern torture equipment, or how these guys whip cream.

I know, a Blow Torch is a far cry from a real powertool but it kinda resembles a mini flame thrower in my own perspective.

Minus the epicness!

I have seen versions of baked Alaska ages ago but only through pictures. It wasn’t until I trained in a hotel that I saw one of them in the flesh. They were really pretty. Imagine my eyes glistening like a heavily oiled pan. I immediately searched the net when I got home. I got the recipe and it was only made up of three parts: a cake base, a big chunk of ice cream and some meringue. The process was straightforward enough and was very easy to follow, until I got to the last part where I realized that I needed a fucking blow torch to create the signature caramelized meringue look.

Somewhat close to my reaction

At that point, I said to my self that a blowtorch is a kitchen luxury. It just blows fire like a cigarette lighter, it can do the same fucking job.

I searched more, looking for a recipe that doesn’t require a blow torch. Some recipes require the whole dish to be baked (hence the name?) but I was not too keen on baking ice cream and expect it to hold it’s shape. Until I saw a video that made me realize how stupid I am (not the first time though).

Do you ever had those moments when you just want to slap yourself? Like when you failed to see the big fucking elephant in the room until it farted?

Whaaaaaaaaaaaat??

Blow torch is an alien technology given to us by some numeric planet residents for us to learn how to make Baked Alaska because it’s their fucking Global Dish. Kids, before speculating or bashing something, try to even just visualize it first (like what you do in your alone time). I was so stupid back then to realize in how I can actually heat up the meringue with a lighter when (obviously) fire naturally rises. A blow torch, well… blows fire to a direction of your choice making it the weapon of choice for this job. Silly silly boy.

Lay off those fucking brulees. You got the job!

Ok! So now that little torchie here got the job, shall we start?

Pretty please~~!

As I said earlier, baked alaska has three parts. A bread base, ice cream and a meringue coating. I made the base just because I can (like hating). It’s the ever so boring chocolate banana bread. It has become a household favorite.

Choco Banana Bread batter. The only reason why I'm still in this house.

While baking, I made the meringue MANUALLY and… I just ran out of words to say on how tiring it is.

BEATING GOT ME HATING

I eventually got it but I feel that it can stiffen up a little more. With more elbow grease perhaps. But hey, a peak stands so it’s kinda in that stage too. A little stiffness won’t hurt. PUN PUN PUN.

Stiff peak is stiff.

I immediately cooled the cake after it cooked. Shaped it to match the size of the ice cream I molded earlier. I used Very Rocky Road for my ice cream. Why? Cause the old road was not rocky enough. Get it, get it? …eheheh.

When the road is not fucking rocky enough.

Stacked them together and watched how the ice cream melt like… like… let’s just say that it melted pretty fast. So I placed it in the freezer for a couple of hours, and pray that my meringue won’t fuck up.

Tropical weather blows sometime.

After a year in the freezer (it certainly felt like a year), I got started on dressing it up. My meringue’s giving me the stinkeye and is getting very pissed. Luckily, she was able to hold through. I got started with this…

Looks kinda like like a church?

And I ended up with…

STOP.

You didn’t see the double word on the image caption? Gotcha!

Anyway, I ended up with this PYT (that’s Pretty Young Thing for those who know MJ only as a man who liked little boys).

PYT!

GIRLY PEAKS! Be a man! Stiffen up!

I didn’t wait any longer. Still with meringue with my hands, I grabbed the weapon and torched it like a pro!

OMAYA KABOOM- Terry Crews

See that weapon in all it’s glory? You can even see the first victim behind. It didn’t stand a fucking chance.

A few seconds, a look what I got!

Aint it purdy?

Purdier up close!

And the inside?

SPREAD THEM OPEN. I WANNA TASTE IT.

Ever heard the term “I wanna be inside you.”? This is what they really meant. Don’t you just wanna be inside this PYT?

The taste? Explosive. Warm meringue with cold ice cream and a little crunch from the crust of the bread. I’m thinking of more ways to flavor this. I just made the three main ingredients of this dessert without really taking into consideration how well they harmonize with each other. But yeah, you can’t really go wrong with sweets.

This post is a few days late. In between that time frame, my family already asked me to make this again and again. Looks like a keeper eh? 😀

Here’s a bonus video that I made. This is when I was torching the meringue. Enjoy!

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Bananas, banana muffins and a kid named Edison

Banana is probably the most exploited fruit in the planet. After all, banana is one of the worlds most consumed foods, next to peanut butter.

As stated by The King himself.

Since bananas are that popular, wouldn’t it be fair to say that banana bread, or muffins for that matter has the same popularity? I wouldn’t even consider you a modern human if you have not tasted any baked products infused with bananas. They are generally adored by the public as a staple and it would be difficult to find a person that doesn’t eat bananas. He’s bananas.

Except for this kid named Edison. He was my classmate when I was in the first grade. He was like one of the stupid kids back then. We always make fun of his quiz scored because he almost always flunked them. Yeah, kids can be too cruel sometimes.

So my science teacher asked us to bring fruits. Any kind of fruit. I don’t know, maybe to shove it up our ass or something. I brought apples, Edison brought bananas.

Our teacher told us to bring out our fruits… and eat it. Maybe she had a fetish on kids eating fruits or something. I don’t know, we just ate it. This is when I saw the first fucked up thing in my life.

 

I was literally like this. Minus the spaghetti.

He was eating the banana like a corn in a cob! He was like munching it like a typewriter, from left to right. I forgot to ask him what tribe he was from because maybe if he’s a native Dumfuk, maybe I’ll reconsider.

I asked him, “Hey, why do you eat it like that?” He responded with a straight dumbfounded face: “Because I don’t like the tip. It tastes bitter.”

 

The only acceptable reaction at that time.

 

I was feeling like a smartass back then so I answered him back, “Why don’t you just cut off the tip, you’re wasting much of of the banana.” At a certain point, I believed that I managed to change his life. But nooooooo. He just looked at me and made this reaction:

Your argument is invalid.

 

And I just went on with my life. I wonder what ever happened to that guy. I don’t really recall his last name so I can’t find him in facebook. Meh, he probably still eats bananas the same fucking way.

Moving along to the real point of this post, Banana muffins.

Oh wait. Before anything else… I must say this first. Banana isn’t just ‘banana’ here in our country. If you happen to ask your local banana vendor for a ‘banana’ you’ll get a strange look and/or a very irritated response asking what KIND of banana you need. You need to be as specific as choosing your deodorant.

 

Oh don't you fuck with me, boy!

 

So here, I present you the 4 banana staples. Thank me later.

 

The Lakatan

 

The Asian cousin of the Cavendish

Lakatan or Lacatan os probably the most popular type of banana here. They are almost always present in the dining table along side with another favorite, the Mango. I can’t really say if the bruises and cuts are actually from mishandling since this is they’re like an extra feature, like a birthmark. Compared to Cavendish Bananas that are so smooth, you’ll even have a hard time telling it apart from a crayon.

Nice looking banana you got there, mate!

The second one is the Latundan.

Dundundundun!!

For plain eating, I actually prefer this kind of banana. They have thinner skin compared to the previous banana and the taste is lighter. If I didn’t have any health conditions, I can probably ate a whole bunch of this in one sitting! Oh, they’re really paler than Lakatan, it’s not just because of the quality of the picture.

The third on is Saba.

Sabanana!!

This banana right here is the most versatile of them all. Most bananas are just for eating (and a little baking) but this… I don’t even know where to start? How about some pictures?

YAY PICTURES!

Here are 6 images of different forms of Saba. I’ll try to discuss them one at a time.

1. Banana Cue. Here, when a word is suffixed by “cue”, most probably, it’s in a stick. Theoretically taken  from the word ‘barbecue’. Banana cue is just Saba cooked with caramelized brown sugar and put on a stick. Great afternoon snack with soda in a plastic bag.

 

You heard me. Don't pretend you didn't.

 

2. Maruya. It’s basically banana fritters sprinkled with (optional) sugar. I could really just stop here rather tha…

3. Turon. It’s like banana cue, but it’s first wrapped with like big wonton (shanghai) wrappers, filled with jackfruit and fried. It’s very crispy and very sweet.

I noticed that the bananas used in Turon is somewhat softer, or more ripe than the banana used in Banana cue. My theory is that, the banana’s that were bought today will be used for banana cue since they still have firmness in them. The next day, the leftovers will ripen up a bit. It will be too soft to be fried and we would not dare throw them away! It needs a casing to be fried… BAM! Turon was born.

 

Moral lesson? Shanghai Wrappers are not good condom substitute.

 

Dude, it's for your... other head.

4. Minatamis na Saba. The bananas are boiled in water and a lot of sugar. So much that it can kill a diabetic within 50 miles. This is a very versatile dessert. Can be eaten hot or cold. Added with ice and milk and you got Saging con Hielo (Bananas in Ice). Can be kept in the ref as a present for your future grandson.

 

Literally translates as 'Diabetic Poison'

5. Boiled. I can go on and on and on… you wouldn’t even care.

6. Let it ripen end eat it.

The forth is the very cute Senorita.

Senorita~ As small as your pinky!

This littlest little banana here is called the Senorita, because, you know, it’s small. This little banana is also the sweetest of them all. The flesh is very soft and very smooth.

As small as a bee. As sweet as honey!

See guys! Not bigger is not always better! I feel sorry for you though…

And as a bonus banana, the freakishly amazing Red Banana.

NO FREAKING PUN INTENDED

I have seen this many times but have not gotten the chance to taste it. It’s kinda scary actually….

I better stop here since this is turning into an Filipino Foodie Lecture most of us got when out teachers get bored during elementary.

And now, as promised… FREAKING BANANA MUFFINS.

 

Mashed Lakatan

First of all, I used Lakatan since it’s much more fragrant that any other bananas. Next time though, I’m gonna use Senorita~

The recipe calls for at least 400-500 grams of peeled and mashed bananas but I wanted mine to be more moist and soft so I added more. No one’s gonna shoot you if you do.

 

Sticky, gooey and yummy. I think it's better... unbaked.

The recipe instructs that I first mix and sift all the dry ingredients first and fold them to the wet. I say Neigh. Add them together and mix them! With respect to the original recipe, there’s a clear reason why she instructs it that way. No one’s gonna shoot me if I do. Let’s just put it at that.

 

 

Naked Nuts!

The original recipe suggested that walnuts are best for this dish. I wouldn’t disagree on that, however, walnuts are not readily available here. The only available type of nut available within the vicinity are peanuts, so I used them. Heck, no ones gonna shoot me if I did.

Just a side note though, my mom’s comment was: whenever peanuts was used in any of my baked goods, they all tasted cheap and industrial. I don’t know. She’s probably right. She’s my mom after all! 🙂

 

Spooned them in muffin pans~

 

Spooned them equally… and equally messy on a muffin pan. So I messed it up! No one’s gonna shoot me if I did!

After 25 mins… You know what’s next?

 

CAN YOU SMEELLALALALALA! -The Rock

You know what’s great about muffins? Aside from it’s really easy and really tasty?

 

Very very moist!

You don’t need to rest them! Unlike banana loaves or banana cakes that need at least 30 mins to cool before consuming to take it out of the pan as clean as possible. This, as long as your pain tolerance can handle it, pop them out of the mold! Eat them while it’s hot! Crack one open, stick your nose in and get hypnotized by the subtle smell of bananas and a hint of cinnamon.

I actually had 2 of them. No one’s gonna shoot me, right?

 

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Allium Pie (WTH?)

My smartest friend, Google, told me that ‘Allium’ is like the surname of any onion related plant. Hence the name of this pie.

Mom, dad and distant cousins.

What you’ve looking at there are white onions, red onions leeks, chopped chives (sorry, I was excited lol) and garlic. The idea here was to keep the flavor of the onions at the same time extracting the sweetness from the white part of the leeks and the garlic. The chives actually went in the pie crust to give it a more appealing look and since it will be subjected directly to the heat of the pan with the dough,I theorized  it will give a lot more aroma than just including it in the filling. Pif, smartass.

Another interesting thing about this dish is the addition of Himalayan Pink Salt.

Pink salt is pink.

We bought this a few weeks ago in Legazpi Sunday Market and it came with a flier that states its health benefits. I just don’t know how it affects my cooking aside from the feeling I get for using something pink in place of something white… Like undies.

Anyway, I made the dough fast. I hate resting stuff like my dough, it needs to be rested for 30 mins before usage. I cut the fat in first before I added the chives.

Note the plants: I'm cooking outside.

I rested the dough in the ref while I slice the onions. This is probably the most dramatic part of the process since the main problems with dealing with onions is how it can make even the toughest man cry. Fear no more because I have 2 tips to reduce the drama in your kitchen!

Wet the knife and onions itself

When you slice an onion, certain gases sprays out and activates itself when comes into contact with water (your tears). Activating it immediately with tap water reduces the chance of it reaching your eyes. Wetting the knife after a few slices also helps since the onions release those sad gases every slice.

Chew gum for goodluck!

Another tip is to chew gum as you slice it. I don’t really know the science behind this but it’s has to do something with your breathing. I’ve heard someone say that breathing in your mouth while slicing also gives the same effect. I personally haven’t tried that though…

Probably the best guy for the job. Mouth breathing and lazer slicing your onions to perfection!

After summoning the force, I sliced the onion clan with ease.

Look mommy! No more tears!

Some of you might say “Hey, where are the shallots?” I know they’re red onion’s annoying (to peel) little brother and I really planned to add them in a form I bet you’re never seen before.

Annoying baby onions in a jar!

Those are actually fermented whole shallots. They are brined with an addition of sugar and kept in the ref indefinitely. They’re sweet, salty and they still pack up a zing even after fermenting for 2 months. I was going to add them but I decided not to on the last minute. I took a bite and I realized that these little suckers are too strong for the dish. And people tend to dislike the onion zing since it stays on your mouth until probably 4 meals after, just like garlic.

Need I say more?

I cooked the onions for a while just to wilt them a bit. These are gonna be mini pies and I want to pit in as much filling as I can. Wilting them is a good idea, don’t you think?

Flame on!

While cooling the onions, I made the dough. Honestly, this was my first time making mini pies so I struggled a bit. I did not follow any recipe since I thought that they’re just like pies, only smaller. Booooooooooooy was I wrong…

Flattening the dough.

Are those moon craters?

See how irregular those holes are? I’m pretty much blind-shooting here.

Frustration

You can probably see how frustrated I was when doing this.

But nevertheless, I managed to do it. Not very pretty, but yeah, it can still hold the filling right?

Spooned the filling in the crust

What? You don't know quickmelt?

I added quickmelt cheese for another level of flavor. Quickmelt is just another one of those processed cheese type of food. I know it doesn’t sound classy like Gruyere or Romano or the ever so popular Parmaseano Regiano but we like it! The flavor is like a cross between mozarella and (real) cheddar… I think.

 

When mama cheese and papa cheese love each other so much! 😀

I don’t know how to seal the hatch for these babies. I could have just leave ’em open and bake them but I’d rather…

 

Fail lattice is fail. AGAIN.

Egg washed them and baked them for 15 mins. Now is probably the best time to think on how I can take them out of the pan since the crust is not over-reaching the top and I can’t flip them over.

Not bad, eh?

Centerfold of the Foodboy Magazine Mar 2011

The lattice didn’t do so much for the appearance, I’ll try to do better next time.

The taste? You can taste the sweetness of the white onion on the first bite and the bit of zing of the red onion before swallowing. My friends said that the first onion pie was better. I don’t know, maybe because of the cheese. More cheese was added to the first pie.

I declare this first mini pie attempt to be a success. I might do more of these pies in the near future. Filled with… chicken maybe? Or left overs? Good thing pies are forgiving and they give a great room for experimentation.  So much for pies! Let’s move on to muffins!

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Redeemed Apple Pie

Brought by the sadness of my previous failure (I had to throw the pie 😦 ), I was hyped to get started on the new apple pie.

I sliced the apples and mixed it with brown sugar and just let it sit in the pan. After 10 mins, look at what happened.

Just 10 minutes! Look how much liquid it gave off

I let it sit in the pan for another 10 mins and cooked it with some more brown sugar and a little cornstarch.

Ooey and gooey, just the way we like it! 🙂

I purposely cooked the apples a little longer since they don’t want crunchy apples in their pie. Preference, preference.

Very very thick and sticky...

By just looking at that pic, you can tell how gooey that is.

I cooled it off and placed it in my crust. Baked it and just when I was about to take it out of the oven, a friend called to tell me that they’re coming over. I was happy since there will be someone who can judge the pie for me.

We ate the pie and forgot everything… I even forgot to take pictures since I was very excited to cut in the pie. The pectin, the sugar and the starch didn’t have enough time to set the pie. I didn’t care. It was another of my ‘I DON’T CARE, SLICE THE PIE/CAKE/BREAD/CHICKEN/PORK/<insertfooditemhere> moments.

The house was filled with apply-cinnamony scent. This is the only picture I took of the pie.

I meant the pie plate...

So what’s the verdict? Am I never gonna make apple pie any other way? Well, just for Fuji apples. If I get my hands on some granny smiths, then I’ll definitely try the other method.

PS:

This is like turning into a pie blog of some sort… And tomorrow, I’m gonna do another pie. A friend and I talked a while ago about the onion pie and he said that I should do something like ‘Onion Family’ pie made of white onion, red onion, garlic, leeks and chives. I thought it was a great idea! Though for a change I would like to try to bake them into a mini pie version since there are new muffin pans in the house. Gah, I should  have kept that as a surprise!

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A long post about a simple Apple Pie

I got some left over pie crust dough from last night’s Onion Pie experiment. I could say that I had some ready made buerre manie but it would be considered injustice to the dough. He was made to hold heavy and thick fillings, and heavy and thick fillings he shall hold!

left over pate brisee

Still hung over about that Onion Pie last night, I decided to do something similar… And that would be Apple Pie.

Yes, apple pie. Probably the most baked pie in the US and the most popular pie here in the Philippines (blame it on Jolibee and Mcdo). Apples are quite cheap too. They sell for the minimum of php10 each. I got mine at 12 each.

A little history. The first time I baked Apple pie for my friends and family, they did not really went gaga over it. I heard comments like “It’s not very… creamy.” Or “Needs more of that sticky stuff.” Then it hit me. I must imitate the pie served at those fast food joints to satisfy my target market. After all, food is all about preference.

I googled Jolibee apple pie and Mcdonalds came up.

That’s the Mc Donald’s apple pie looks like.

A little side note though, it’s rumored that there are very little actual apples in that apple pie. The general public believes that Chayote is used as an extender.

No, they're not ugly granny smith apples.

Chayote is a very common vegetable here. It has a very neutral flavor so it is often eaten with shrimp and pork (this was actually our lunch this afternoon). It tends to absorb any liquid it’s simmered and take it’s taste too. That’s why they’re perfect as an ‘apple pie extender’ and when I think about it… it does have the same texture of a cooked apple… I have not tried cooking apple pies with this veggie yet (maybe I’ll try soon) and I have nothing against it. I think it’s a sneaky way to make your child eat veggies!

With that said, people still buy the fast food pies mainly because they taste good. It wouldn’t bee a good apple pie it it didn’t have sticky and gooey stuff in it. It kinda brainwashed a whole nation thinking that that’s the ‘real’ apple pie.

Or is it?

Fail lattice is fail. Not to mention the color...

I did the ‘sweet and gooey’ apple pie before and they were epic. Until now, my friend keeps telling me that he loved that pie more than any other pie I baked.

I did not have a chance to take a pic just after slicing it simply because it got devoured as soon as the filling oozed out. The pie plate was licked clean so I guess this recipe’s a keeper.  You’d think I’ll never make apple pie any other way again. I guess so but the thing is… I get too cocky sometimes and try to do too much. I wanted to do those apple pies you see when you search ‘apple pie’ on google images. That’s actually what I did on the first time but I wanted to do a version that my friends and family would love.

Now back to the present!

I made extra pate brisee cause my left over was not enough.

After cutting the fat in the dough. I used Pork Lard by way.

If you didn't know by now, adding vodka works great on pie crusts.

Vodka is used in Pie Crust as 50% of the total liquid. Since vodka is alcohol and alcohol evaporates in high temp it will result to a more flaky crust.

The less the water, the better.

Add ice cold water, little by little just to get the dough to hold together. It’s still gonna be pretty loose so you have to knead it in a lightly floured surface. Not too much though, just until the dough binds together.

The apples I used are Fuji apples. They are less tart than granny smith and less sweeter than Washington. They’re somewhere in the middle of the two. The flesh however is spongier compared to the two and obviously has more moisture content.

HARVESTED FROM THE PEAK OF MOUNT FUJI. loljk

As I said I wanted to make the granny smith method of the apple pie so I just mixed them with brown sugar and cinnamon and placed it on the crust.

Too much?

I’m aware that adding sugar will macerate the apples. I didn’t care since I proceeded on baking them immediately.

Baked the pie until the apples were fork tender.

Feels like warm apple pie...

Venting holes

This slice looks like it was made from pure win!

Not really 😦

I thought I got was I was looking for but as soon as I tasted it, I did not dare take another bite. The apples were like flavorless and very dry… Yeah, it macerated in the pan while cooking and here’s the proof.

Take note of the leaking juices and the hollow dome.

You can see how much moisture the apples lost. All the juices that leaked out resulted to the great shrinkage of the apples. Look how much space was left on the top 😦

And the apples…

As dry as a dandruff...

The apple pie is still half untouched. No one wants to eat it. I feel pity for the apples and to me also.

Granny smith apples are hard to come by here so I guess I’ll stick to these.

The sugar, water and cornstarch mixture kinda seals in the moisture of these darned apples. Well after this long and sad blog, I still have a few apples here and I’m gonna make them tomorrow. I’ll turn them into locally appreciated apple pies… gooey and sweet 🙂

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What the hell is an ‘Onion Pie’?

Ok, so me and my buds are just hanging in my house when we all got hungry. There’s usually food here whether be it raw or cooked. The thing is, all the raw foods there were frozen and will probably take a few hours to thaw. The thing to be consumed at that point was some large onions a SINGLE potato and some left over nacho cheese. My friend immediately suggested Baked Potatoes a la Wendy’s but there’s only one potato. Onion rings wouldn’t be that filling for a group of guys and it’s gonna create a mess so that’s why I came up with… Yeah, Onion Pie. ‘What the hell is an onion pie?’ asked my friend. I wittingly said, “Pie Crust with Onions” with a grin on my face. We did a quick search on google images to see if onion pies really existed. We saw some and immediately got started. We did not look for any recipes since we know we have limited ingredients. We just made do of what we had. And look what we got…

Pretty good looking pie, right?

There’s really no secret to this pie. Just sliced the potatoes and made them as a base. Sliced the onions and just dumped in. Salt, pepper, rosemary and some left over nacho cheese. And I almost forgot nutmeg. The pie crust? I did not do any measurements just scooped out estimated amounts of equal parts bread flour and cake flour (since I don’t have AP), shaved a good amount of pork lard, and water little by little. And if you didn’t know by now, vodka is best for your pie crust. Use like half water and half vodka. Since Vodka is mostly alcohol and will evaporate in high temp, it’s gonna make the crust crispier. Also, vodka is a neutral type of alcohol so it wont affect the taste of your crust. A friend told me that he did not really like the taste of onions but ironically, he got 2 slices. That made me happy since I made him realize that food is beyond meat and eggs, there’s more. he just had one comment: More cheese. Typical comment from a non vegetable eater, looking for more ingredients to mask out the veggie taste.

That’s it for now. Oh, one last thing. I wanna share this image of the fresh rosemary I picked outside for our pie. I like how it’s kinda wet. It made it look greener and vibrant. Fresh herbs love the rain 😀

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