GIVING THANKS! And a Persimmon, Apple, Cranberry Pie

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This Thanksgiving I thought about the word gratitude and really thought about who and what it applies to. This year has been tremendous – great things happened, mixed with a little sour. Overall it was truly a momentous year with several things : me passing the CA Bar exam, starting my career in the unknown, and finally not having to worry about school/job/work/relationships/etc. I feel freeeeee. Something that I haven’t felt in a long time. I mean truly, the bar exam took up 11 months of my life (started thinking about it and preparing for it in January), and in the meantime, graduated law school and started my career. Being this free, I really don’t know what to do with all this free time. I can’t get over not having to worry about something…or actually laugh without the restraint of not knowing if I passed or not, or smile without SOMETHING in the back of my mind. I definitely need to start looking into some new goals for 2015. If I passed the Bar exam, anything is possible.

I have a lot to think about what I am thankful for this year, and most importantly, the people in my life who have helped made it possible. Of course the immediate people in my life comes to mind first, but I realized with the outpouring of support and congratulatory messages about my passing of the Bar, that somehow I have made a mark in someone’s life enough for them to reach out. So I guess the lesson here is, never underestimate the marks you may have made on someone’s life, no matter how small. I am so touched by all this and want to make every effort to show my gratitude in this world: to family, to friends, to acquaintances, to strangers. I want you all to know that your support means so much to me and makes me so thankful we have met.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. Below are some of the things I made for Thanksgiving, including my table setting before guests arrived. And I somehow found time to make a pie. IMG_5125IMG_5143

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Pie has been a challenge for me recently. I haven’t been able to get the all butter crust right – by food processor, by hand, by fork, by pastry blender. It is still a work in progress but I needed something for my guests on Thanksgiving! So I made an all oil crust. I first heard about this crust only a week ago…I googled and googled and everyone gave me the same assurance – the crust will be flaky with the perfect crumb, but it just won’t taste like butter. I was intrigued that I have never heard of something like this and was super excited to give it a try. It turned out a success – the best success out of all the pies I have been making recently. I plan to conquer the all butter, butter/shortening type crusts in the next few months. But for now, this is the quickest and easiest route to good pie. Plus I have an abundance of persimmons, which I don’t really like that much, so putting it in sweet flaky pie makes it so much better.

Ingredients

Oil Crust

4 1/2 cups all purpose flour

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 1/3 cups olive oil (or canola, or vegetable)

8 tbsp iced cold water

Pie Filling

10 fuyu persimmons, sliced thinly

2 apples (granny smith, pink lady, fuji work best), sliced thinly

1 cup fresh cranberries

1/2 cup brown sugar

1/4 cup corn starch

1 tsp cinnamon

1/4 tsp nutmeg

1/4 tsp ginger

1. Make the oil crust by mixing the dry ingredients first, and then pouring in the oil. It will be super soft and it will look very wet.

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2. Once the crust ingredients are mixed together, split the crust contents in half and wrap each in plastic wrap. Place in refrigerator until filling is ready.

3. Make the filling. Place the sliced persimmons, apples, cranberries, brown sugar, spices and corn starch in a large pot. Heat on med heat until the fruit becomes juicy, about 10-15 min.

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4. Preheat oven to 425 deg.

5. Once the filling is done, take out your pie plate. I used a 9-10 inch pie plate. Roll out the pie crust dough between two sheets of parchment paper to prevent sticking.

6. Pat the first rolled out crust onto the bottom of the pan. Pour in filling.

7. Roll out the second crust and place on top. Make crimps, folds, whatevers to make it pretty. Make sure you cut slits in the middle before you place it into the oven.

8. Bake the pie at 425 deg. for 40 minutes. The crust will be golden brown and the filling will bubble out a little when it is done.

9. Serve! I find it best served warm.

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