Sunday, April 22, 2012

Easter pies and evil ovens

It's the kind of morning where I am hearing Tubthummper playing in my head -

"I get knocked down
but I get up again
you're never gonna keep me down "

Be it a temperamental oven, illogical policies with business institutions or making pie crusts, I will not give up !!! I was reminded of this trait yesterday when my oven failed once again, after spending an afternoon creating a home made Pizza. Second weekend in a row. This time it is personal. In the mean time, I am reflecting on the good times of the past with this beast, when we worked in harmony to create such tasty dishes as this, a Easter Ricotta Pie
  It's something like a pineapple cheesecake in a pie crust, and very sweet ! When surfing for Easter goodies I found this recipe at and adapted it slightly for my own kitchen, who does not own a food processor and had to create it old school. I am hoping that in posting this recipe for an Easter dish my oven will  be inspired by the theological concept of Resurrection. It does not seem to respond to the usual Repair person or threats of Voodoo dolls. Gotta keep trying, and not let it get me down !

Easter Ricotta Pie (adapted from
1-1/4 lb ricotta cheese
1/4 cup heavy cream
2/3 cup + 2 tbs sugar
2 tbs cornstarch
1/2 tbs pure vanilla extract
zest of 1 orange
3 large eggs
1 qty 8 ounce can crushed pineapple
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon (to sprinkle)
Pie crust -
1-1/2 cup all-purpose flour
4 oz chilled butter cut into chunks
1 large egg & 1 egg yolk
1/2 tsp salt
2 tbs sugar
1-1/2 tbs chilled water
    For the pie crust - cut cold butter chunks into flour and salt to make crumbs. Add egg & egg yolk, sugar and 1-1/2 tbs chilled water and mix till dough forms. Flatten the dough ball into a smooth disk and wrap in plastic cling wrap. Chill for about 15 minutes.
    Preheat the oven to 425 deg F
    While the pie crust is chilling prepare the remaining ingredients - Ricotta cheese - Measure the ricotta cheese by weight and place in a strainer over a bowl to catch excess liquid. 
    Crushed pineapple - Empty the can into a sieve. Press down to remove all excess juice & discard the excess juice.
    Orange - Using a zester, zest the rind and set aside.
    Eggs - Crack into a bowl and discard shells.
    In a mixing bowl add the ricotta cheese, cream, pineapple, pure vanilla extract, orange zest, sugar, cornstarch and eggs. Mix till smooth
    Liberally flour a clean working surface with about 1/4 cup all-purpose flour. Roll out 3/4ths o the dough evenly, giving a quarter turn as you go, to a diameter 2-1/2" larger than the base of the spring foam pan.
    Press the crust into the spring form pan and dock in spots (poke holes into) with toothpick
    Add filling, and use remaining ¼ of pie crust to form lattice topped crust
    Place on a baking sheet and sprinkle with cinnamon if desired
    Place the baking sheet and pan in the hot oven and bake for 15 minutes. 
    Reduce oven temperature to 350 deg F
    Bake for an additional 35-40 minutes until the pie is lightly puffed up and the pie is slightly jiggly in the center when gently shaken.
    Remove the sheet and pan from the hot oven and allow to cool. Remove the pan sides.
    The pie can be served at room temperature or chilled in the refrigerator once it has reached room temperature. Slice and Serve chilled or room temperature.

    Today I am going to attempt intimidation with my oven. Play with a meat mallet and pound some meat paper thin and then transform it into a braciolle and simmer it on the stove top to make it jealous  and get the idea that if it does not behave, it misses out. I get knocked down, but I get up again, you're never gonna keep me down ....

1 comment:

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