Hurrah! It’s Pieathalon time – I recently got the annual email from the fabulous Yinzerella of Dinner is Served 1972, reminding me that it was time to submit my suggestion for this year’s vintage pie.
This pie fest is all about a group of food bloggers around the world digging out vintage recipes, sending them off to Pie Queen Yinzeralla, who, I imagine, has a good laugh at the various challenges presented, then lets us know which pies we are to put to the test this time.
This year, I nominated a recipe from my much loved and often used back in the day Pooh Cookbook. Apparently that’s vintage these days, my childhood… There weren’t a lot of pies to choose from in the book, so I went for Pooh’s Summer Pie – can’t wait to hear how Surly of Vintage Recipe Cards got on with this one.
I have to be honest, it sounds a lot more enticing than the one that came my way via Poppy of Grannie Pantries. Thanks Poppy, zucchini pie…
This was Poppy’s take on the task ahead of me: “It’s basically a mock apple pie made with zucchini instead of Ritz crackers. I imagine that it will taste okay to people who like apple pie, but I really wonder about the texture…”
Wonder no more, Poppy. I love apple pie, this pie was not really okay and you were right to wonder about the texture. “Unpleasant” was the word use by my victims/family.
The recipe comes from Favorite Recipes 1977, courtesy of the Troy Mills Christian Women’s Fellowship, of Troy Mills Disciples of Christ Christian Church. Mrs Charles (Vera) McGuire, in her infinite wisdom, decided that the traditional apple pie needed a revamp.
1977 was almost certainly one of the years when my lovely dad grew a bumper crop of marrows, so thank goodness the fine ladies of Troy Mills were unknown to my mother, or she would no doubt have tried to revamp the revamp and serve this as a marrow pie. She tried pretty much everything to get through the annual glut. Although as marrows don’t really taste of anything, maybe it would have been ok.
Mrs McGuire didn’t offer a recipe for pie crust. In fact she didn’t really give away much information at all. I used one of the lovely sweet pastry recipes from my recent adventures at the wonderful Ballymaloe Cookery School in Cork, Ireland. I went for a 23cm/9” tart tin, which turned out to be a bit too big for the filling.
As I always struggle with US measurements, I did a bit of googling and used around 450g of courgettes. I peeled, sliced and cooked in boiling water for about 10 minutes, until they were tender. Drained them and mashed them up a bit, as that seemed like a good idea. I felt that 300g of sugar was excessive, so I mixed the courgettes with about 100g of caster sugar, added the lemon juice and flour and popped that in my pastry case. Then, as instructed, I dotted the top with “butter, cinnamon and nutmeg to taste”. Again, Mrs McGuire was playing her cards close to her chest, detail-wise. I went for 25g butter (too much, as it turned out – as evidenced by the little pool of butter floating above the filling as the pie baked), a teaspoon of cinnamon and a fairly generous grating of nutmeg. I tasted it. “Not unpleasant”, I was surprised to find. See above regarding the reactions to the finished pie.
I baked my pie at 180°C and after about 20 minutes it was looking a little brown, so I decided enough was enough.
My key findings are: this is a waste of a delicious pie crust; there is nothing wrong with a good old fashioned apple pie; it’s a pretty straightforward pie to bake but I strongly advise that you don’t; if you are going to bake a pie with zucchini/courgettes, why not make a lovely savoury one, with lots of cheese and a delicious green salad.
Can’t wait for next year!
Check out some of the other pies:
- Apricot Mallow Pie by Grannie Pantries
- Candy Apple Cheese Pie by Dinner Is Served 1972
- Chocolate Angel Pie by Culinary Adventures with Camilla
- Ham Tongue Pie by The Nostalgic Cook
- Lime Pie with Creme de Menthe by Retro Food for Modern Times
- Poohs Summer Pie by Vintage Recipe Cards
- Praline Pumpkin Pie by Dr Bobb’s Kitschen
- Sagittarius Hamburger Pie by Silver Screen Suppers
- Yul Brenner’s Pie by Book of Cookrye