Saturday, April 10, 2010

Chocolate Cream Pie & Papa

When I was growing up, my Papa had mad skills in the kitchen. He was a cook in WWII. At 6'6.5" tall he joked that he was "too big to put on the front lines". When I went to summer camp, he was the cook. They called him "shorty". All the cabins would compete to see who would win the grand prize...Bana-splitz at the end of the week! The other cabins got lemon meringue (My favorite!) so I always tried hard to lose. Papa was always great at baking pies too! Coconut cream and chocolate cream, lemon meringue...all 4 inches deep with 3 foot golden peaks on top. I wish I would have been smart enough to remember all the amazing things he tried to teach me years ago. Tonight, though, I tried my hand at chocolate cream pie. I found the recipe in an cook book that I open all the time but never use except for 1 recipe. I could never get a recipe from Papa because it was all in his head...he could never cook for 2...he had spent too many years cooking for hundreds! lol He tried to teach me how to make pie crust once but I could never figure it out and I'm pretty sure I still suck at it! I've also always had lousey luck with Meringue and this recipe had both. Crust and Meringue...I wont' comment on the crust part till I try it. I'm also pretty sure I burnt the chocolate, but DH says it's awesome. As for the Meringue...I aced it!! I had fun baking my first pie and I'm pretty sure I could hear Papa in my kitchen - reminding me that my egg whites had to be room temperature and be sure to mix at high speed. That my butter had to be cold...then shaking his head at me when he saw that I used margerine...
Gawd I miss him.

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