Monday, March 30, 2015
Here we go, a short recitation of my life since last Wednesday, I'm using google voice recognition because there is still an IV needle Medlock in my right hand.
Wed: the pain started around 2 though I hadn't felt well while grocery shopping at 130. but at some point I looked at my belly button and noticed the petechiae and bruising and realized that the sharp pains and nausea are not good. I called my doctor and Mama and we got to the ER around 3:45. I had probably six injections of morphine before the evening was over so bad was the abdominal pain and cramping. The doctors were concerned about the bruising around my belly button / hernia scar and so they were talking surgery.
Thur: surgery was first thing in the morning I think, but only after the painful introduction of the nasogastric intestinal tube. I don't want to talk about it. I don't remember most of the rest of the day I think the surgery took a few hours and I didn't learn until a few days later that they removed a 6 to 8 inch portion of my small intestine which had become wrapped up and even infiltrated by the mesh from my old hernia scar. Apparently they were really worried. They started the surgery laparoscopically but had to move to a full abdominal incision from my breast bone almost to my c-section scar. I'm told I still have my belly button but I have refused to look. I am think there are dozens of staples.
Friday: I think I slept most of the day Friday in a darkened room on lots of morphine and other things. All I remember is the Tube. Though at one time I also had the Foley, oxygen, and the two IVs. I remember the ancient aliens guy with the fluffy hair. at some point I also watched dangerous weather shows and something about quicksand. My beloved Mama was with me the whole time, also juggling dear Babysitter and miss K and daughter babysitter who were lifesavers. I got some beautiful red roses from Gommie and Pop which brighten the room and a sweet little purple vaze of flowers from
Saturday: I got up to walk around the ward much more on Saturday and in doing so met both of the chaplain and the therapy dog which were really important encounters for me. Chaplain I talked a little bit about her training and her experiences at the hospital and then we prayed for patience for me because by then the NG tube consumed most of my thoughts. It caused me to feel like I was choking, hindered any speaking, and in general hurt. Even medical professionals to talk to me felt bad about that tube. Goo visit on his way to spend the day with the kids and relieve mama, which was very nice. he makes a good doctor and the sympathetic friend. The kids loved having him to play with. I think this was the day there was snow my days are getting a little confused but it is snowing as I record this and I think it's lovely. I'm in the minority of one on this though. Facebook that was the night that Aunt Banana and I texted each other and she even ended up talking to my nurses; they found this very sweet and entertaining. Aunt Banana, these experiences always give me a new appreciation for the amazing and challenging work that you do. Thank you.
Sunday: This was a banner day. The Tube came out! Mama had come for a visit but was down getting lunch when they ripped the 60 millimeter tube out of my nose and throat and stomach. It was the best feeling ever to breathe and swallow and talk again hallelujah! Rejoice! Swallowing that first sip of cold water was the best thing ever followed by cranberry juice and for dinner jello and putting in sherbert and broth.
But the very best part of sunday was it the kids came for a visit after their trampoline birthday party with a friend. think they were nervous to come visit which is totally understandable so we sent them a picture of me smiling with the stuffed bunny they'd given me so I looked normal and of course we wouldn't have let them come if the tube had still been in place. We spent two hours walking in the ward, eating my dinner, meeting my nurses, using the art supplies Mama gotten me-- mama is a hospital genius--hugging and chatting and cuddling and playing on the bed. The perfect end to a good day. They'll come back this Monday afternoon and everyday after school that I am not dismissed. I'm guessing it'll be Tuesday at the earliest.
Some final notes: I am very aware of my privilege with regard to immediate quality emergency healthcare probably very well coveredby our generous insurance supplied by Mama's employer. I am in the minority even in our rich land and this saddens me even as I benefit from it.
At the same time that I'm going through this, my dear friend, teacher had knee surgery and is at home recovering I was supposed to be her escort and mail provider during this and have not been able to but I hear she is recovering well. Yay!!! Also the daughter of a person of my acquaintance has been diagnosed with a heart issue and is in the hospital as well this weekend though not I think the one I'm in. I am grateful that it was me not my children who required emergency surgery last week and I pray for good recovery and prognosis for the little girl.
Lastly there are ever so many people to be thankful for today from the hospital staff doctors nurses and techs to those people closer to us who have helped take care of the kids and those who are surrounding us in love and organizing meals, with sending emails and Facebook updates, too many to mention. I feel the blessing of their love and care and am grateful for our sacred community.
Thursday, March 26, 2015
Tuesday, March 24, 2015
The personal essay.
Yep, I'm applying for graduate school.
I mentioned my call to become a UU hospice chaplain and, after much research, I've determined that the best course for me is to pursue a Master of Divinity in order to be a fully accredited chaplain, through the Unitarian Universalist Association.
I can go to school online, with a few intensive weeks at the school, which specializes in a low-residency online program. It's also a fully recognized UU seminary. And the program takes three years, including some of the Clinical Pastoral Education credits I would need to become a chaplain.
So, I'm applying.
Nervous. Excited. School-weary. Determined.
I just need to keep the end in sight, my hospice work with dying patients and their families.
Can't wait! Wish me luck!
Sunday, March 22, 2015
9:15 a.m. We're packed and ready to go. Al the girls return to their folks, many head into the village. Mama and Bud pick us up and I get a quick shower before we head back to the Village. Bud and Mama had driven around doing some Ingress tracking and then played some games in the hotel. So not as exciting as our night, but they had a good time.
10:00 a.m. We wandered around OSV, eventually running into our GS friends. Sis and Bud enjoyed hanging out with them. I liked watching the cooking demos, as usual--apple pie in the Parsonage and maple cookies in the Fitch House. We also picked up some beer bread and maple soda in the little shop.
Then we went to the craft center, where Mama made a spile (the little wooden pegs you use to tap trees for maple sugar time) and I hand-sewed a little seed bag.
12:00 p.m. For lunch, we went to BT's Smokehouse across the street from the Village. The line was long, as was the wait. And it was amazing barbecue! We had brisket sandwiches, St. Louis ribs, pastrami on rye, smoked salmon, and all the fixin's--the very best collards ever, Texas caviar, mac and cheese, cornbread, cole slaw, and more. Even Tagalong bread pudding.
And thus, at 3:00 p.m., a little over 24 hours later, we returned home from our special sleepover. Exhausted, excited, stuffed to the gills. Sis has already asked where we're overnighting next!
Friday, March 20, 2015
And while I am very glad the 2' of snow all over our yard had melted down to little glacial pockets, I still love to watch the snow fall. I'm not sorry at all that it is snowing on the first day of spring.
Thursday, March 19, 2015
Tuesday, March 17, 2015
We did most of our celebrating this weekend, with soda bread and a corned beef dinner. The kids are passed the age of Leprechaun traps (I don't think they ever did that, though it's huge in the younger grades now.) And there is no pinching people who don't wear green up here--mainly because most of Connecticut is Irish and they NEVER forget to wear green.
But for us, it was a pretty ordinary day.
Tonight, we had a fundraiser at the historic house. We had a corned beef sandwich dinner and Irish music by a local trio. Lots of alcohol, including Irish coffee with either Jameson's or something like Bailey's. I hung out with dear friends, including Mrs. S and family, and talked about all manner of things. I also caught up with some of our board members and docents. My main job this even was accompanying the videographer, my neighbor Mr. J from up the street, who is making a video of our little house to be used for marketing and education. He got some great shots of the house filled with happy, celebrating people.
We also had a raffle. Board members procure items through donation or purchase. I made an afghan. It was fun to watch the winner receive it; she was so excited. I even spoke to her later. She had spoken to her 90+ year old mother who was down in the dumps so she was going to send it to her. I'm so glad she liked it.
I brought home some extras to Mama, who had her own solitary party--just the way she likes to celebrate St. Patrick's Day.
In an interesting twist, there was a solar storm with Aurora Borealis possibly predicted for our latitude (it reached a 7.33 Kp; we're between 7 and 8, probably closer to 8.) So Mama and I went outside--to look for green in the sky! But didn't see any green sky, even for St. Patrick's Day.
Monday, March 16, 2015
Saturday, March 14, 2015
In prepping this email about all things pie, I exchanged several email with my Aunt T, the family baker. She confirmed some directions AND sent more recipes (now in the Heritage Pie section below.)
Here are some of the recipes we're considering, my compendium of pie (with a few incomplete recipes and a few I'm thinking about trying).
Custard Pie from Bammie and Aunt T
1/2 cup cocoa
1/2 cup flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
3 egg yolks
3 tablespoons butter
1 teaspoon vanilla
1 cup sugar
Coconut Custard: The custard pie recipe Aunt Quilt uses, this time chocolate. She made Coconut Custard for Gommie's birthday, just omit cocoa and add 2 handfuls of coconut to the custard and then sprinkle more on top of the meringue (which is just 3 whites and 6 T sugar whipped)
No instructions, and I can't recall if you cook it over double boiler or how long you bake it. I've emailed my aunt for the directions.
**need to get amounts; photo of recipe is cut off
1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 cups boiling water
grated rind of two lemons
4 tablespoons lemon juice
Mix sugar, starch, flour, salt. Add egg yolk and cream together. Add boiling water. Cook til thick stirring constantly. Take from fire. Add lemon juice and rind. Cook a few minutes longer. Pour into pre-baked pie shell.
Makes 2 crusts
1 teaspoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup shortening
1/2 cup or 8 tablespoons (1 stick) butter
1/3 + 1 tablespoon ice water
from Joy of Cooking
*Grammy and Aunt T's Original Oil Crust:
oll out other crust and cover plate. Puncture to allow steam release, dab with pats of butter, sprinkle with sugar and cinnamon.
TRIED and TRUE
shortcrust pastry dough made with 3 cups flour and 3/4 cup butter
2 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 large onion, peeled and chopped finely
2 1/2 cups good, strong Cheddar, coarsely grated
1/4 lb potatoes, peeled, steamed, and diced
2 large eggs
4 tablespoons heavy cream
a bunch of parsley, chopped
salt and pepper
beaten egg for glaze
Preheat oven to 425F Divide the dough into two balls, keeping one a little larger than the other. Melt the butter in a pan and gently fry the onion until softened and translucent, then let cool. Throw the onions into a bowl with the grated cheese, potato, eggs, cream, parsley, and the seasoning, and mix everything together with your fingers.
Roll out the larger ball of pasty and line a shallow greased 9" tart pan. Tip the cheese and onion mixture into the pie crust. Moisten the edges of the crust and cover with the rolled out top piece, crimping the edges together carefully. Brush beaten egg over the top and bake in the oven for 30 minutes until crisp and golden brown. You can sweat leeks instead of onions, or add buttered apple slices instead of potato.
Tamasin Day-Lewis, Tarts with Tops On, or How to Make the Perfect Pie
4 tablespoons butter
4 cups stock (I used vegetable)
salt and pepper
Preheat oven to 350F.
Melt butter in a large saucepan. Then add flour. Cook until brown (i.e. brown but not burnt--if it burns, toss it out and start roux again. You can't get rid of that bitter burnt roux taste). Allow to boil so "gravy" will thicken. Add vegetables and cooked chicken to heat through. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Spray inside of 9" pie plate with cooking spray. Roll out and lay down bottom pie crust. Fill with vegetables, chicken, and "gravy." Top with remaining pie crust. Vent. Put pie plate on cookie sheet to prevent spillover. Bake for approximately 1 hour or until crust is brown and filling is bubbly.
2 refrigerated pie crusts, at room temperature
appx. 3 potatoes, diced
appx. 4 carrots, diced
appx. 4 stalks of celery, diced
1 can corn kernels
1 cup green peas, frozen
4 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons oil
4-5cups stock (I used vegetable)
salt and pepper
Boil potatoes in salted water for 10-15 minutes, until just tender. Meanwhile, boil carrots, celery, and corn in vegetable stock. When potatoes are just tender, add them to carrots, etc. Also add frozen peas (no need to defrost or cook ahead of time because they'll just get mushy. I only heat the corn ahead of time to drop the canned flavor and sweeten the broth). Simmer.
Preheat oven to 350F.
Then make a roux with flour and oil. When roux is done (i.e. brown but not burnt--if it burns, toss it out and start roux again. You can't get rid of that bitter burnt roux taste), add approximately 4-5 cups stock from vegetable pot. Allow to boil; the "gravy" will be thick. Drain the vegetables and then add them to "gravy." Salt and pepper to taste.
Spray inside of 9" pie plate with cooking spray. Roll out and lay down bottom pie crust. Fill with vegetables and "gravy." Top with remaining pie crust. Vent. Put pie plate on cookie sheet to prevent spillover. Bake for approximately 1 hour or until crust is brown and filling is bubbly.
Notes: You can, of course, add chicken or other vegetables. Miss L sprinkles her crust with nutmeg, which is good but makes me hunger for a fruit pie instead. And I imagine you could add cheese to that vegetable "gravy" for added flavor. Or you could add herbs, but since the kiddos don't like flecks of things in their food, I didn't add any. Next time I'll add some minced garlic to the vegetables. Mama suggests a splash of Worchestershire sauce. Miss L also purees some of her vegetables to thicken her "gravy." She uses the bag of frozen vegetables (squash, zucchini, carrots, cauliflower, broccoli) from the warehouse store as the mainstay of her pot pie.
Apple Butter Pumpkin Pie
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
3/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
3/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg
1/8 teaspoon ground ginger
3 eggs, slightly beaten
3/4 cup evaporated milk
1 unbaked 9-inch pie shell
Sweetened whipped cream, for garnish
Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
Combine apple butter, pumpkin, sugar, salt and spices in a bowl. Stir in eggs. Gradually add milk and mix well. Pour into pie shell. Bake for about 40 minutes or until set.
Now this is my signature apple pie, made for all holidays. And as my paternal grandmother always used to say, “Apple pie without cheese is like a hug without a squeeze!” Mama Hungry didn’t believe until she tried it; now she won't eat pie without it.
¾ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon nutmeg
6 sliced, peeled apples
¼ cup flour
½ teaspoon cinnamon
pie crust and crumb topping
Peel and slice apples, soaking in water and lemon juice to prevent browning. Heat oven to 425°F. Mix sugar, flour, nutmeg, and cinnamon. Stir in apples. Cover with crumb topping. Cover edge of pie with aluminum foil, shiny side out. Bake 40-50 minutes, removing foil for last 10 minutes.
1 cup flour
½ cup firm margarine
½ cup packed, crumbly brown sugar
Mix with fork and sprinkle on top of pie.
Miss B's Swedish Apple Pie
N.B. We have also added 1/2 cup or more of oats to the batter, to make it more like a crisp; use the full amount of butter in that case.
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons lemon juice
16 oz sour cream
- Add whole strawberries to the cooled mixture, save some for garnish. Pour into baked pie shell. Top with sour cream and garnish with fresh whole strawberries, if desired.
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 nine-inch baked pastry shell
- Add whole strawberries to the cooled mixture, save some for garnish. Pour into baked pie shell. Top with whipped cream and garnish with fresh whole strawberries (though, we like it even better with a dollop of sour cream!)
From the reusable farm basket . . . and it was good (and much like the strawberry pie we made last month). As usual, Sis liked the crust and Bud prefers his berries "plain."
3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 cup water
4 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
1 tablespoon lemon juice
baked, 9-inch pie shell
-Mix sugar and cornstarch in saucepan, add water, and 2 cups berries. Cook over medium heat, stirring until mixture is thick, clear, and boiling. Remove from heat, stir in lemon juice, cool. -Place remaining 2 cups of raw blueberries in pie shell. Top with cooked blueberry mixture. -Chill. Serve with 1/2 sweetened yogurt - 1/2 sweetened sour cream sauce, if desired.
Just a note—Crème de Menthe gets much stronger with age!
Italian Ricotta Pie
Original recipe makes 2 deep-dish pies
2 cups white sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla extract
3 pounds ricotta cheese
1/4 cup miniature semisweet chocolate chips, or to taste(optional)
4 cups all-purpose flour
5 teaspoons baking powder
1 cup white sugar
1/2 cup shortening, chilled
1 tablespoon shortening, chilled
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 tablespoon milk (optional)
Beat the 12 eggs, 2 cups sugar and vanilla extract together in a large bowl. Stir in the ricotta cheese and the chocolate chips, if using (see Cook's Note). Set aside.
Combine the flour, baking powder, and 1 cup sugar together. Cut in 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon shortening until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Mix in 4 beaten eggs and 1 teaspoon vanilla extract. Divide dough into 4 balls, wrap in plastic, and chill for at least 30 minutes.
Preheat oven to 325 degrees F (165 degrees C). Grease two deep-dish pie plates.
Roll out 2 of the balls to fit into the pie pans. Do not make the crust too thick, as it will expand during cooking. Do not flute the edges of the dough. Roll out the other 2 balls of dough and cut each into 8 narrow strips for the top of the crust. (Alternately, you can use cookie cutters and place the cutouts on the top of the pies.)
Pour the ricotta filling evenly into the pie crusts. Top each pie with 8 narrow strips of dough or cookie cut-outs. Brush top of pie with milk for shine, if desired. Place foil on the edge of crust.
Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 30 minutes; remove foil. Rotate pies on the rack so they will bake evenly. Continue to bake until a knife inserted in the center of each pie comes out clean, 25 to 30 minutes more. Cool completely on wire racks. Refrigerate until serving.
Eagle Brand Coconut Flan Pie
Single Crust Classic Crisco Pie Crust
3/4 cup lite coconut milk
1 (14 oz.) can Eagle Brand® Sweetened Condensed Milk
3 large eggs
1/4 cup water
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup flaked coconut
HEAT oven to 400°F. Prepare recipe for single crust pie. Roll out and place in 9-inch pie plate. Press to fit without stretching dough. Flute edges. Thoroughly prick bottom and sides with fork to prevent shrinking. Bake 10 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350°F.
COMBINE coconut milk, sweetened condensed milk, eggs, water and vanilla in blender container. Process 1 minute or until blended. Add coconut. Process for 30 seconds. Pour into partially baked pie crust.
BAKE 50 to 55 minutes or until knife inserted in center comes out clean. Cool 30 minutes. Chill 2 hours.
A deep-dish 9-inch frozen crust can be substituted in this recipe. Allow to thaw at room temperature 10 minutes. Follow directions above to prick with a fork and bake before adding filling.
Blend all ingredients in a blender for a few seconds, until well mixed.
Pour mixture into a 10” greased pie plate.
Bake at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 1 hour or until centre tests firm.
Then flour will settle to form crust, the coconut forms the topping, the centre is an egg custard filling.
Black-Bottom Oatmeal Pie
From Smitten Kitchen Adapted, just a tiny bit, from Four and Twenty Blackbirds
1 1/4 cups (155 grams) all-purpose flour
1 1/2 teaspoons (6 grams) granulated sugar
1/2 teaspoon (3 grams) fine sea or table salt
1 stick (4 ounces or 115 grams) cold unsalted butter, cut into chunks
1/4 cup (60 ml) very cold water, plus an additional tablespoon if needed
1 1/2 cups (120 grams) rolled oats
1/4 cup (60 ml) heavy cream
4 ounces (115 grams) bittersweet chocolate, coarsely chopped
3/4 cup (145 grams) packed light brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon ground ginger
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
5 tablespoons (70 grams) unsalted butter, melted
1 cup dark corn syrup (see Note below for replacements)
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 teaspoons cider vinegar
4 large eggs
Make the pie dough:
By hand, with my one-bowl method: In the bottom of a large bowl, combine the flour, salt and sugar. Work the butter into the flour with your fingertips or a pastry blender until mixture resembles a coarse meal and the largest bits of butter are the size of tiny peas. (Some people like to do this by freezing the stick of butter and coarsely grating it into the flour, but I haven’t found the results as flaky.) Add 1/4 cup cold water and stir with a spoon or flexible silicone spatula until large clumps form. Use your hands to knead the dough together, right in the bottom of the bowl. If necessary to bring the dough together, you can add the last tablespoon of water.
With a food processor: In the work bowl of a food processor, combine flour, salt and sugar. Add butter and pulse machine until mixture resembles a coarse meal and the largest bits of butter are the size of tiny peas. Turn mixture out into mixing bowl. Add 1/4 cup cold water and stir with a spoon or flexible silicone spatula until large clumps form. Use your hands to knead the dough together, right in the bottom of the bowl. If necessary to bring the dough together, you can add the last tablespoon of water.
Both methods: Wrap dough in a sheet of plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour, or up to 48 hours, or you can quick-firm this in the freezer for 15 minutes. Longer than 2 days, it’s best to freeze it until needed.
Form the crust: On a floured counter, roll the dough out into a 12 to 13-inch circle-ish shape. Fold dough gently in quarters without creasing and transfer to a 9-inch standard (not deep-dish) pie plate. Unfold dough and trim overhang to about 1/2-inch. Fold overhang under edge of pie crust and crimp decoratively. If not parbaking, place in fridge until ready to fill. If parbaking, place in freezer for 20 minutes, until solid.
Par-bake the crust: [Optional, but will lead to a crispier base.] Heat oven 400°F (205°C). Line frozen crust with lightly buttered or oiled foil. Fill with pie weights, dried beans or pennies. Bake on a rimmed baking sheet for 20 minutes. Carefully remove foil and weights and let cool completely before filling.]
Heat oven: (Or reduce oven heat, if you just par-baked your crust) to 350°F (175°C).
Prepare filling: Spread oats on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in the oven for 10 to 12 minutes, stirring occasionally. Set aside to cool. Reduce the oven temperature to 325°F (165°C).
To make the black bottom, bring the cream just to a boil over medium heat in a small saucepan. Pour in chocolate pieces and whisk until melted and smooth. Scrape the chocolate into the bottom of the cooled pie shell and spread evenly. Place in freezer while making the filling.
To make the oatmeal layer, in a large bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, ginger, salt, and melted butter. Add the corn syrup, vanilla, and cider vinegar and whisk to combine. Add the eggs one at a time, whisking well after each addition. Stir in the cooled oats. Place chocolate-coated pie shell on a rimmed baking sheet and pour filling over.
Bake: For about 55 minutes, rotating 180 degrees for even color if needed halfway through. The pie is done with the edges are set and puffed slightly and the center is slightly firm to the touch but still has a little give — like gelatin. Allow to cool completely on a wire rack, 2 to 3 hours. Sever slightly warm or at room temperature.
Do ahead: The pie will keep refrigerated for 3 days or at room temperature for 2 days.
From Averie Cooks
YIELD: two 10-inch pies
PREP TIME: about 2 hours
COOK TIME: about 25 minutes for the pie
TOTAL TIME: about 5 hours, to allow for cooling
1/4 c. unsalted butter, melted
1 recipe Oat Cookie (recipe follows)
1 tbsp. light brown sugar, packed
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1 recipe Crack Pie Filling (recipe follows)
confectioners’ sugar for dusting
1/2 c. unsalted butter, softened
1/3 c. light brown sugar, packed
3 tbsp. white sugar, granulated
1 large egg yolk
1/2 c. all-purpose flour
1 c. old-fashioned rolled oats
1/8 tsp. baking powder
pinch baking soda
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
Crack Pie Filling
1 c. unsalted butter, melted
1 1/2 c. white sugar, granulated
3/4 c. light brown sugar, packed
1 1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1/4 c. corn powder (corn powder is defined as freeze-dried corn, ground to a fine powder)
1/4 c. milk powder
3/4 c. heavy cream
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
8 large egg yolks
To prepare the Oat Cookie crust, preheat the oven to 350°. In a stand mixer with a paddle attachment, cream butter and sugars on medium-high for 2 to 3 minutes until fluffy and pale yellow in color. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl with a spatula. On a lower speed, add the egg to incorporate. Increase the speed back up to a medium-high for 1 to 2 minutes until the sugar granules fully dissolve and the mixture is a pale white color. On a lower speed, add the flour, oats, baking powder, baking soda, and salt. Mix 60-75 seconds until your dough comes together and all remnants of dry ingredients have incorporated. Your dough will still be a slightly fluffy, fatty mixture in comparison to your average cookie dough. Scrape down the sides of the mixing bowl with a spatula.
Pam spray and line a quarter sheet pan with parchment or a Silpat. Plop the oat cookie dough in the center of the pan and with a spatula, spread it out until it is 1/4″ thick. The dough won’t end up covering the entire pan, this is okay. Bake the oat cookie for 15 minutes. Cool completely before using in the crack pie recipe.
To prepare the pie filling, mix the dry ingredients for the filling using a stand mixer with a paddle attachment on low speed. Be sure to keep your mixer on low speed during the entire process of preparing the filling; if you try to mix on any higher than a low speed, you will incorporate too much air in the following steps and your pie will not be dense and gooey – the essence of the crack pie. Add the melted butter to the mixer and paddle until all the dry ingredients are moist. Add the heavy cream and vanilla and mix until the white from the cream has completely disappeared into the mixture. Scrape down the sides of the bowl with a spatula. Add the egg yolks to the mixer, paddling them in to the mixture just to combine. Be careful not to aerate the mixture. Use the filling immediately.
To assemble the pies, preheat the oven to 350°. Put the oat cookie, brown sugar and salt in the food processor and pulse it on and off until the cookie is broken down into a wet sand. (If you don’t have a food processor, you can fake it till you make it and crumble the oat cookie diligently with your hands.) Transfer the cookie crumbs to a bowl and, with your hands, knead the butter and ground cookie mixture until the contents of the bowl are moist enough to knead into a ball. If it is not moist enough to do so, gently melt an additional 1-1 1/2 tablespoons of butter and knead it into the oat crust mixture. Divide the oat crust evenly over 2- 10″ pie tins.
Using your fingers and the palm of your hand, press the oat cookie crust firmly into both 10-inch pie shells. Make sure the bottom and the walls of the pie shells are evenly covered. Use the pie shells immediately or, wrapped well in plastic, store the pie shells at room temperature for up to 5 days or in the fridge for up to 2 weeks.
Place both pie shells on a sheet pan. Divide the crack pie filling evenly over both crusts (the filling should fill the crusts 3/4 way full) and bake at 350° for 15 minutes. During this time, the crack pie will still be very jiggly, but should become golden brown on top. At 15 minutes, open the oven door and reduce the baking temperature to 325°. Depending on your oven this will take 5-10 minutes – keep the pies in the oven during this process. When the oven temperature reads 325°, close the door and finish baking the pies for 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, the pies should still be jiggly in the bull’s eye centers, but not in the outer center circle. If the pies are still too jiggly, leave them in the oven an additional 5 minutes.
Gently remove the baked pies from the oven and transfer to a rack to cool at room temperature. You can speed up the cooling process by transferring the pies to the fridge or freezer if you’re in a hurry. Freeze your pie for as little as 3 hours or up to overnight to condense the filling for a dense final product – the signature of a perfectly executed Crack Pie. Just before serving finish with a dusting of confectioners’ sugar.
Adapted from Momofuku Milk Bar