I have the day off because it is Casmir Pulaski Day here in Illinois. I love to engage in some recreational cooking when I don't have to go to school. Immediately after Jeff left for work, I began flipping through some cookbooks, looking for a recipe. Crazily, sometimes this activity makes me nervous (why? why?), and sometimes nervousness makes me need a toilet. Except, heee! No toilets here! What to do?
Then I remembered: I wanted to make that shrimp creole recipe I saw on the Food Network during the happy days before our toilets betrayed us. I googled it, wrote down the ingredients, got on my coat, tried to calm down, scraped frost off my car's gigantic windshield, and drove to the awful Wal-mart (which housed the nearest available bathroom that was not a gas station), all within 10 minutes. Once at Wal-mart, my abdominal distress had eased up a bit, so I was able to shop for the handful of items I needed before staggering, zombie-like, into their bathroom. They didn't have seafood stock, however, just chicken and beef. I asked the guy at the seafood counter if they had seafood or shrimp stock somewhere in the seafood area, and he didn't know what stock was. Yeah. I paid, used their surprisingly pleasant bathroom, and emerged feeling a thousand times better. I found seafood stock at Schnuck's, arriving at home with plenty of time to flag down the plumbers (our house is hard to find).
They seemed nice enough: well-fed and polite with dollar signs in their young eyes. I made an apple pie
while watching them work outside. I wanted to keep my eye on
them, but I didn't want to just stand there gaping either, so this gave
me something to do as I spied on them out the kitchen window. They
finished their work in about an hour, and now we have toilets again. Never take your toilets for granted, people!
Anyway, apple pie is one of my favorite things to bake, and my mom came up with the recipe. It's unapologetically basic--no high end ingredients, no oddball spices. The crust, which is very, very bad for you, is a fragile network of flakes so meltingly tender that you just might cry. The recipe below is from a grease-stained, much used cookbook my hometown published over 20 years ago.
Notes: I like Granny Smith apples for this. I roll the crust out between plastic wrap as thin as humanly possible. This recipe seems to make just enough crust, so if your rolling technique is anything like mine, you won't have enough leftover crust to do anything super decorative or make a mini pie. The blue ink measurements are my own. I used to have a pie plate that was bigger than the standard size, and those changes made more than enough crust. So yeah, use my measurements especially if you want to make a mini pie.