Tag Archives: contest

Misty Water-Colored Memories of the Baked Goods That Were…

The National Pie Championships were this weekend! (Aww…hard to believe it’s been two years!)

I don’t see anything yet on who won what, but apparently parking was scarce: http://blogs.theledger.com/default.asp?item=2368900.

And…Dionna Hurt, who I am pretty sure gave a crust-making demo at the 2007 contest, was back again to defend her 2008 title: http://www.myfoxorlando.com/dpp/mornings/042309pie_championships.

And…apparently Dawn from Orlando won the apple category in the professional division: http://www.chef2chef.net/culinary-student-blogs/2009/04/27/finals-pie-and-possibly-no-summer-session/.

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I Lost a Super Bowl Bake-Off on a Technicality.

The technicality being, apparently, that I am a weirdo.

I’ll explain…

I know I’m not vanilla. I could, in fact, be the most neurotic person ever. People call me crazy from time to time (and sometimes there’s just enough venom behind it that it actually hurts my feelings a little). Bottom line — I’m eccentric. I get it. Countless people wrote me after Pie Day to tell me just that.

And I’m fine with it…for the most part. I don’t want to *be* vanilla. I don’t want to blend in with the crowd and be just like everybody else. I’m glad there are things that make me unique. But…at the same time, I don’t want to be a circus sideshow act. I don’t want people to think that I’m actually, legitimately should-be-institutionalized CRAZY (even though on my last birthday I declared that this was going to be the year that I try not to care so much about what other people think).

Also? I worry a lot. This was especially true on Pie Day. I wanted things to go well. I wanted everyone to have a good time. But sometimes I can be…a little manic. And even my closest friends only have so much patience. Sooo…somewhere along the line on Pie Day, I drifted from (endearingly?) neurotic to downright annoying and friends suggested I get a drink. When I was still high-strung after one, they told me to get another. And so on.

And…there were some people I simply wasn’t expecting to see at Pie Day. So when two of them showed up — we’ll call them Man A and Man B — I was thrilled to see them. I was *also* feeling no pain at that point…and perhaps greeted them more enthusiastically than was necessary. But…no harm, no foul? Better too enthusiastic than not enough?

It also happens that Man A used to bake pies. And so this was a point of conversation…and two Super Bowls ago, I had a get-together at my apartment and a friend was from Chicago and a big Bears fan and liked to bake, so she and I had a bake-off for the game that year — she baked a pie for the Bears and I did one for the Colts. Hers was blue and orange and vegan (Very festive! And healthy!), but creamy blue *and* appetizing is hard to pull off…

So…surely I referenced this victory in the course of conversation when I got to talking to Man A about *another* Super Bowl Bake-Off *this* year. And, you know, most of the time I exhibit a heck of a lot of restraint…but, like I said, no pain was felt by the end of Pie Day…and so some trash talk flowed freely…and at one point, I allegedly told Man A that I was going to “bake a pie that would make (him) rue the day (he) was born.”

Unbeknownst to me, however, Man B was listening and texting a mutual friend — Man C? — about the stupid things I was saying.  And, you know, there was no malice behind it or anything like that…but when Man C told me about it — laughing heartily, mind you — I couldn’t help but feel a little stupid and embarrassed. I wanted things to go so well on Pie Day and for people to leave thinking good things about pies and baking and — yes, I admit it — ME. Instead — admittedly, my own fault — three gentleman ended up laughing after the fact because I had too much to drink and wasn’t able to restrain the crazy. So when Man C later refused to apologize to Man A for me, I wrote A myself and said I was sorry and conceded the contest.

However, if I *was* going to bake a pie for the Cardinals…here’s my thought process:

Obviously you have to go with either the color or the bird. (The direction — as in, cardinal sign — could be clever…but would require more thought than I actually put in as I was already the loser and the bake-off was never really going to happen anyway.)

If it’s the color, I suppose you could always do red velvet cake…but that’s technically a cop-out. Or perhaps you could invent red velvet pie?

Or…you could go with a red fruit — Strawberries? Rhubarb? Both? — and give it an additional AZ spin by cutting out cacti from the extra dough to decorate the top. (Which sort of reminds me of the time I went out of my way to find a figure of a runner to decorate a cake for a stupid, stupid man who was getting ready for a marathon and I had to buy a whole set of soccer players just to get one that looked like he was running.)

Or…with the bird theme, my first thought was that nursery rhyme — 4 and 20 blackbirds, baked in a pie…When the pie was opened /the birds began to sing. /Wasn’t that a dainty dish /to set before the king? — and it turns out there is *actually* a Cajun recipe for blackbird pie…with blackbirds. Luckily, however, there’s also a birdless blackbird pie recipe. So…I’m thinking that’s the one I probably would have made.

Happy Super Bowl Sunday! Here’s hoping the Cardinals pull off an upset…although the Giants came through last year…and back-to-back underdog victories may be too much to ask for…?

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Bidding Adieu to the Old Logo…

A former coworker mocked this up when I started my blog to chronicle preparations for the pie contest in Orlando. There doesn’t seem to be a good place for it here on WordPress…so I think I have to retire it. But, thanks again, MM! I’ll try to figure out a way to commemorate it appropriately!

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