it’s autumn in Florida, not due to adjustments within the climate or the colour of falling leaves, however as a result of in all places you store pumpkins are on show, and pumpkin-flavored merchandise are on the market. Need pumpkin-flavored espresso or beer? This season is for you.
“Do you want pumpkin pie?” requested my spouse, Karen.
There are cake individuals and there are pie individuals. I’ve been a pie particular person all my life. You may have your carrot cake, and your chocolate layer, your pink velvet. I’ll all the time choose a chunk of pie, and I simply observed you can’t sort the phrase “piece” with out typing “pie.”
I’m about to record my favorites and ask you about yours, however not earlier than I share a narrative, one which I’ve been too ashamed to put in writing about till now. In the middle of a protracted marriage, there are moments you remorse. So deep is the remorse, it might not can help you overlook.
This story goes again to a infamous birthday, a while in midlife. I requested Karen if as a substitute of one other gooey birthday cake, she would get me a birthday pie. I requested my favourite, not simply accessible: coconut custard.
My eccentric selection goes again to my earliest years in New York Metropolis. If we had been out and about city, Mother would take me to a cafeteria known as an Automat, a preferred consuming expertise that will be edged out after which devoured by fast-food joints. In an Automat, every sandwich or salad or dessert was on show in an individualized glass case. You’ll simply place a nickel or two in a slot, open the little door and slide out the deal with. In my case, a chunk of coconut custard pie.
The Automat was created by a meals service firm named Horn & Hardart. In 1952, the Clarks moved from Decrease Manhattan to Lengthy Island. On particular days, we would store at Roosevelt Area, a well-known previous airfield that was transformed into an out of doors procuring heart. Proper throughout from Macy’s was a store that specialised in Horn & Hardart meals merchandise. We by no means went house with out a coconut custard pie.
Egg on my face — and extra
My birthday arrived on a Sunday afternoon, and I used to be hustled out of the eating room by my daughters. Oh boy, oh boy, I might nearly style it. The odor of lit birthday candles wafted my means, then the sound of the household singing Joyful Birthday.
I entered the room with eyes extensive and a smile as extensive as a pie plate. I look down on the pie in keen anticipation. I yelled: “That’s not coconut custard! That’s coconut CREAM!! I wished coconut CUSTARD!!!”
As I stalked out of the room, I heard surprised silence, adopted by a bitter and sarcastic reprise of the birthday tune. Karen didn’t discuss to me for the remainder of the day, and a lot of the subsequent day. How was I going to get out of this one?
My favourite pies
However first I believed it could be enjoyable to compile an inventory of my favourite pies. This begins with the disclaimer that pizza — my favourite meals — is just a pie by analogy. It might be spherical and lower into slices, however it’s savory, not candy. In my guide, despite the geometric method pi r squared, pies are spherical — and candy. Right here they’re:
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- Coconut custard: easy and silky, to not be confused with you understand what.
- Apple: essentially the most American dessert of all, greatest served heat with a small scoop of vanilla ice cream.
- Pumpkin: I assume that is tasty year-round, however I get pleasure from it greatest two hours after Thanksgiving dinner.
- Strawberry rhubarb: Not simple to seek out, however so attention-grabbing in its riot in opposition to complete sweetness.
- Cherry: My dad’s absolute favourite.
- Peach: The most effective peach pie I ever had was in Georgia, in fact. I like a spherical peach pie, discovering the cobbler too crumbly.
Please don’t be offended if I’ve left your favourite off my record. Please get pleasure from your pecan, lemon meringue, blueberry, candy potato and key lime pies to your coronary heart’s content material.
Crawling out of the doghouse
It didn’t take me lengthy to appreciate what a jerk I had been with the birthday pie incident. What made it worse is that Karen had gone to loads of hassle to get that pie. She discovered one at a store on St. Pete Seaside, solely to get caught in a site visitors jam on the previous drawbridge to Move-a-Grille. She made a loving effort, and I had profaned it.
“OK,” I stated the following night within the kitchen. “In order for you, you’ll be able to take what’s left of the pie and smash it in my face.” Perhaps I stated “smoosh” fairly than “smash.”
With out talking a phrase, Karen arrange a stool and, in entrance of the ladies, wrapped a towel round my neck, pulling it a bit tighter than mandatory.
She eliminated the pie from its carton. I closed my eyes. Coconut cream is a really gooey dessert. I anticipated the mess on my kisser and up my nostril. What I didn’t count on was the double twist of her wrist. First to the left. Then to the appropriate. Then got here the howls of laughter and delight.
I swallowed a morsel. It wasn’t half dangerous.
What’s your favourite pie?