Some things you just don’t want to do every day. Like go to the gynecologist. Or renew your driver’s license. Or make a pie crust.
To be fair, one of those things is much less stressful than the others, and also has a much greater reward. Since I’m not enough of an exhibitionist as to talk to you about my doctor’s visits and not enough of a bore as to discuss my trips to the BMV, I’m talking about pie making.
Every year, I make a list of goals for myself, and “make a pie crust” has been on that list for about three years. Somehow, even though checking it off the list only required the investment of a couple hours and a few cups of flour, I just kept not making a pie crust. People often talk about how labor intensive the process is, and those Marie Callender’s pie crusts are right there next to the refrigerated crescent roll tubes, and the whole thing seemed to rely on equal parts luck and finesse, neither of which I have much of in the kitchen. As I started my 25th year by writing the words “Make a pie crust” yet again, it started to feel like that pie crust meant something. The pie crust was effort that I wasn’t expending, creativity that I wasn’t putting to use, chances that I wasn’t taking. That damn pie crust had begun to symbolize everything that frustrated me in my life.
Do you guys know how old Lady Gaga is? She’s 25. I’m 25. Look at how much she’s accomplished and look at how much I’ve accomplished. You don’t have to write a gay pride anthem or wear a meat dress or get really into method acting for an awards show, I told myself. You just have to make some dough.
So I made a pie crust this weekend. I used Joy the Baker’s recipe for Peach Blueberry Pie because a) peaches are at the end of their season and b) every Joy the Baker recipe turns out well and stuns the crowds.
Here’s the thing about making pie crust: it doesn’t take that long, but it kind of does take that long. It’s slightly frustrating (personally, I don’t like cutting butter into flour OR rolling out dough) and it gets messy. You will get a lot of flour on your shirt; this is just something you will have to accept early on. Also, I think I did something wrong when I was mixing it up because mine seemed far crumblier than was described in the recipe. But guess what?
It’s a pie! It turned out okay, and earned such high praise as “This is actually pretty good” from one of H’s friends. The best kind of compliments are the reluctant kind that make it seem as if the compliment giver expected terrible things from you. Oh, wait. Those are the worst kind of compliments. No matter! I made a pie and it was good.
Was it better than the Marie Callender’s refrigerated pie crusts? Well…it tasted almost the same! While it will certainly make you feel about 85% more badass to make your own pie crust, probably no one will be able to tell if you just buy the refrigerated kind. You’ll lose some bragging rights, though, and then you won’t be that obnoxious girl who says things like, “Oh, a premade pie crust? No, I bake from scratch.”
One more thing to check off the ol’ to do list. If you’re venturing into the wild and wonderful world of pie baking, I’d recommend this recipe. Just try to cut your piece a little more neatly than I did.