My favorite holiday has always been Thanksgiving. If that is because it falls near to my birthday or because we spent the time with family and food I am not sure, maybe it is my favorite for both these reasons. My memories are flooded with delicious pies and dry turkey, playing a good game of spoons or cards with my cousins, and as I grew older visiting with family and friends on this beautiful fall holiday. My favorite contribution to this holiday event filled with people, food, and fun was baking pies, and when we hosted, setting an extra fancy table.
A couple of years ago my in-laws were visiting for Thanksgiving, we also invited another young family and their set of parents to join us, resulting in enough people to cook up a real feast! We had not hosted a Thanksgiving meal since college and I was looking forward to making this occasion – beautiful, delicious, and memorable. When lining up the menu I chose one of my recent favorite pie dishes, Hand-Spiced Apple Pies. While this recipe took extra work, making each hand pie individually, it was worth the effort. When these little pies emerge from the oven the result is a sweet, flaky, melt in your mouth pie – that you do not have to share.
As Thanksgiving day approached I planned, prepared, cleaned, decorated, and made lists. As I began the mixing the crumbly pie crust for my hand pies I looked forward to feasting. I mixed, cut in butter, folded, rolled the crust, measured, spiced, and cooked apples, and shaped beautiful little hand pies. I then sat down to enjoy some time with our visiting family. Laughing and enjoying their presence, I all of a sudden hopped up and yelled “the pies”. I ran to the oven, a little late. The pies were crispy brown, not quite black. My work wasted and hope of an amazing dessert deflated.
The 4 of us stood there surveying the damage and decided the best thing to do is cut up a pie and give it a test try – always the best practice – eat all that sugary evidence of failure. The pies were edible, not perfect, but still enjoyable. I plated the pies and served them after the Thanksgiving feast with many apologies.
Even with the burnt apple pies we still had a fabulous time, full of fun feasting and enjoyable company. Filled with laughter and memories. The pies did not ruin the season or the day, they were just one fun part that has turned into a beautiful memory of 4 adults devouring burnt apple pies hot out of the oven.
So, enjoy life, friends, relationships, and Apple Pies, even when it is not perfect.