Sunday, November 10, 2013

Mom's Incredible Apple Pie




It's impossible for me to make a pie without thinking about Mom.  I made an apple pie today, and every motion of my hand is something she taught me.  Before I could walk, I was watching her roll out the dough, and while I was still in pigtails, she was including me in the process, giving encouragement and patiently correcting my blunders.  Making a pie is like stepping back into Saturday night in Mom's kitchen.

I can still see Mom as she slips her apron off the peg in the closet and ties it around her waist.  In her big white mixing bowl, she cuts Crisco into the flour mixture with two knives, sprinkles in a little ice water, and gathers the dough into a ball.  Humming a tune, she presses it flat and rolls it out thin.

She glances at me over her shoulder.  "When I'm in a good mood," she says thoughtfully, "the pie crusts turn out, and when I'm in a bad mood, they don't."  Judging from the results, Mom wasn't in a bad mood very often.


pie apples

Mom had a varied resume when it came to pies; there was rhubarb (my favorite), and blackberry and lemon meringue, cherry, pumpkin and mincemeat.  This night's project was one of her specialties, her Incredible Apple Pie.  The fruit had to be firm and tart, and this time of year in Washington state, where I grew up, such apples were abundant.

Mom peals the apples, and I help.  "When I was young," she tells me, smiling, "my sisters and I used try to get the whole peal off in one long spiral.  We'd see who could get the longest one."




Mom slices the apples thin, adds sugar and spices, a top crust, and pops her masterpiece in the oven.  When the pie is nicely browned, she takes it out of the oven and leans down to listen.  It's bubbling, so it's done.

The aroma is mouth watering, and for her children who can't wait 'til Sunday dinner, there are scraps of pie crust with cinnamon and sugar.  Oh, what bliss!




Mom's been gone for a long time now.  
If there are pies in heaven, and it's hard to imagine otherwise,
she certainly has her apron on.





12 comments:

Nancy Claeys said...

A sweet post and beautiful pie. xo

pens and needles said...

Aren't you thankful she taught you the art of pie making -- because you obviously got it! Sweet memories -- I, too, got scraps of crust dusted with sugar and cinnamon and crispy, and I still use mine up that way. If the grands aren't here, I eat them all! Nov 21 is Tie One On Day, when apron wearers are encouraged to bake something from scratch and give it to someone who could use a home-baked dose of love. I'm going to participate -- why don't you make a pie that day and give it away?? :)

Connie Smiley said...

What a cool idea, Janet! I'd never heard of it. I've marked it on my calendar.

Ginney Camden said...

What a great memory! I can almost smell the pie as it comes from the oven. It made me remember the aprons that my great grandma used to crochet. I have several of them. Lovely but not very practical but I wear them occasionally when I bake and I think of her.

Sandra said...

What a lovely post about your mum's apple pie and how you love to bake it and think of her!
I love that last photo too with the changing leaves and sun-rays.
I can just about smell your pie from here. I love the decoration!

Lisa Gordon said...

What a beautiful post, Connie, and how fortunate you are to have these wonderful memories of your mom.

Madge Bloom said...

What a wonderful memory of your mom, isn't it interesting the simple things we sometimes remember most and best...

Cathy H. said...

A beautiful tribute to your mother! I remember when my mom made pies she always sprinkled the left over strips of crust with sugar and cinnamon and made tiny little cinnamon rolls!

susie @ persimmon moon cottage said...

Wonderful post! I could almost smell the cinnamon and apples as I looked at your pictures. That was a pretty apple pie.

Your photo of the autumn woods with the sun light in the trees is beautiful.

Mary Howell Cromer said...

Absolutely precious post share. The pie looks so good and your telling about of your momma and learning from her, made my own thoughts of mother baking come to me. I so remember her hands, they were beautiful...mine are not. I would watch her hands bake and sew and clean and I am remebering so much from just this post...thank you~

bailey-road.com said...

What wonderful memories. Your apple pie looks delicious too!

Carolyn Tunison said...

This is a sweet memory! Whenever I make a pie or pick wild blackberries, I think of those great pies we used to make in Cannon Beach! Then we'd invite our friends over to help eat them! Now, I have a hill of them in my back yard in Seaside, so I think of those good times often.

Carolyn Loughary