A blog topic I never thought I venture into

Whilst I am decent in the kitchen, it has been a long journey for me to learn how to cook and feel comfortable and confident in the kitchen.  I still get touchy about it sometimes and recently the failure of my bread machine to produce dough reduced me to tears.  So, I never expected this blog to include anything remotely close to food topics, yet here it is.

I made an Apple Gruyere Pie yesterday and it was amazing!  Let me give you the back story.  We have recently been watching “Pushing Daisies” on Amazon (maybe it’s Netflix, I can’t remember at the moment).  I won’t go into the details of the show, it’s quirky and a bit odd, but entertaining in it’s own way and it centers on the exploits of “the Pie Maker”.  A few episodes back, one of the characters made an Apple Gruyere Pie.  It looked wonderful and I found myself oddly hungry for this pie.  Now, I’m not really a pie person.  I’m more of a cake and chocolate kind of gal.  My husband, on the other hand, is a pie person and he informs me that I’m quite good at it – except for fruit fillings.  They are the reason I don’t make pies much.  I get so angry because my fillings are way too watery, no matter what I try. 

My wonderful mother in law gave me a recipe many years ago (an Amish/Mennonite recipe) that makes about 5 crusts at a time.  You can wrap these crusts and freeze them for up to 3 months and they ALWAYS turn out great, nice and flaky.  I gave up on trying my hand at making my own fillings and I use pie filling canned lovingly by someone in a factory now and I’m happy to say I’ve reconciled this particular demon and I’m fine with this.

However, when I got the hankering to actually make an Apple Gruyere Pie yesterday since I had a nice, Swiss block of Gruyere in the fridge, I had trouble finding an easy recipe.  Every recipe I found referred to “Pushing Daisies” and went on to describe in detail how you had to use a particular kind of lard and 3 different kinds of apples, blah, blah, blah.  Well, I didn’t have lard nor three different kinds of apples. Nor did I have the time or inclination for so much work, so I improvised – which is HUGE for me in the kitchen (just ask my long suffering husband).

Here’s what I did – in pictures, no less:

the cheese which I grated (about 3 oz)

the crust to which I simply added the grated cheese by kneading it a few times

the filling which someone slaved over

all put together – and I did remember to cut some slits in the top and sprinkle on some extra cheesein the oven – fingers crossed at 350 degrees for 40 minutes, then out to brush an egg wash over it & remove the foil from the edge and back in for another 15 minutes

and viola! looks and smells heavenly

It was super good.  The cheese is very subtle and provides a nice balance to the sweetness of the apple filling.  My family enjoyed this warm with extra creamy vanilla ice cream.

So, that’s it…the end!





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1. a continuing process whereby an individual acquires a personal identity and learns the norms, values, behavior, and social  skills appropriate to his or her social  position.

2. the act or process of making socialistic: the socialization of industry.


Socialization – one of the single biggest reasons not to homeschool cited by experts and non-experts alike.

Makes me laugh.

True Story

Setting: a child’s birthday party

Characters: family members and friends, including two teenage girls (same age) one who is home educated and the other goes to a public high school.

During the course of the party, the home educated teen converses easily with all party attendees, from grandparents to the young children.  The public high school teen cannot take her eyes off her phone.   She has no conversation with anyone else at the party, just texts her friends and sits in the corner. 

Which one is socialized?  According to the definition, the home educated teen has acquired her personal identity and has learned the norms, values, behaviors and social skills appropriate for her social position, aka real life, as evidenced by her ability to interact with the actual people in the room appropriately.  The public school teen has not acquired a personal identity apart from her cell phone and has not learned social norms, values or behaviors required to be a member of a society, aka a birthday party.

The home educated young woman and others try to talk with the public educated teen but receive only grunts and eye rolls in reply.  Who can communicate effectively?

This story, although true, is anecdotal and I understand this.  I am not trying to oversimplify here.  I do know of home educated kids who are as backward as the day is long, but I also know kids who go to school who exhibit the same backwardness.  I also know of homeschooled kids who would possibly benefit from a school setting because, in these cases, I really do think it’s the parents who are the problem.

Socialization is a myth.