Lemon & Pineapple Sage Chess Pie

Lemon & Pineapple Sage Chess Pie

The history of the chess pie is debatable. Many contribute its origin to England, but those who have lived in the south their entire lives know it is as southern as peach pie.

To describe the many variations of chess pie that I have tasted, I would sum up the experience as a pecan pie without the pecans, and in their place, a little bit of cream. Just like a pecan pie, chess pie is one of the easiest pies you can make. Almost impossible to muck up.

A flaky tender crust sits at the base of the custard-like filling. And because the filling is so neutral, you can flavor the pie with almost anything.

Chess pie is sometimes referred to as buttermilk pie or vinegar pie.

For my summer version, I went with lemons and fresh pineapple sage from the garden. The custard is made using fresh lemon juice and lemon zest. I add in pineapple sage by seeping cream with it and using it throughout the recipe.

This recipe comes from my mom’s favorite community cookbook and gets an update. Here is another recipe that I did the same thing with.

I always make my own pie crust because the taste is so much better than store-bought. A ratio of half butter and half lard is my preference for fat. You are your own baker, so use any recipe for a crust that you like or even use a premade one!

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Lemon Chess Pie

Lemon Chess Pie

Ingredients

  • For Pie Crust:
  • 2 1/2 Cups of Flour
  • 1 Teaspoon of Salt
  • 1 Tablespoon of Sugar
  • 1/2 Cup of Cold Unsalted Butter, cut into cubes
  • 1/2 Cup of Cold Lard
  • 4 to 8 Tablespoons of Ice Water
  • For Pie:
  • 4 Large Eggs
  • 2 Cups of Sugar
  • 1 Tablespoon of Yellow Corn Meal
  • 1 Tablespoon of Flour
  • 3 Teaspoons of Grated Lemon Zest
  • 3/4 Cup of Heavy Cream
  • 1/4 Cup of Melter Butter
  • 1/4 Cup of Lemon Juice
  • 1/2 Cup of Pineapple Sage

Instructions

  1. First make the pie crust.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the dry ingredients for the crust.
  3. Using a pastry cutter, cut in the butter and lard. You want the crumbs to resemble various sized beans.
  4. Once the crumbs are at the desired size, pour in 4 tablespoons of the ice water.
  5. Gently begin to press the dough together to form a ball. If more water is needed ad it.
  6. Once you have a ball of pie dough formed, divide it into two.
  7. Wrap each ball in plastic wrap and allow them to rest for at least one hour in the fridge.
  8. Save the second ball of dough for another use.
  9. After the pie dough has chilled and rested, begin making your pie.
  10. Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit.
  11. Roll out one of the balls of dough, on a well floured surface, to a 12 inch circle. This is for a 9 inch pie pan.
  12. Place the pie crust into the pie pan, then form edges to your desired design.
  13. Poke holes in the bottom of the crust, then weight it down with parchment paper and pie weights.
  14. Bake the crust for approximately 15 minutes.
  15. Once baked removed the crust from oven, remove the pie weights, and set aside.
  16. Make the pie filling.
  17. Steep the pineapple sage in the heavy cream by placing the two in a small sauce pan over medium-low heat. Steep for approximately 10 minutes, and do not allow the cream to come to a boil.
  18. Reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
  19. In a mixing bowl, combine your sugar, flour, and cornmeal.
  20. Stir the eggs into the dry mixture, one at time. Mixing each until well combined.
  21. Whisk in the melted butter, lemon juice, lemon zest, and 1/4 cup of the steeped cream.
  22. Pour filling mixture into the pie crust, and bake for 1 hour.
  23. If your pie crust starts to brown, cover with foil.
  24. To finish the pie, whisk the remaining steeped cream until a medium stiffness whipped cream is formed.
  25. Spread whipped cream over the top of the cooled pie and garnish with chopped pineapple sage.
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Blood Orange Upside-Down Pound Cake

Blood Orange Upside-Down Pound Cake

Tis the season for blood oranges! I popped by Whole Foods the other day to pick up a couple of things, and per usual I ended up loading my cart with a few (and by a few I mean a lot) items that were not on my list. Upon spotting the display of citrus with skin that looks stained with red juice, I could not help but grab they few that were left. Blood oranges are one of the more beautiful fruits, so once a year when I spot them it is impossible to resist.

Due to my distraction in the fruit, I did not think far enough into the future to grab any other special items needed for baking. This recipe would have to be one I made with items I already had in my pantry….eggs, sugar, butter, and milk. Sounds familiar right…so pound cake it is!

What better way to showcase the unique color of these gothic orbs than to make it the top of a cake.

Be warned, blood oranges are more adept for baking instead of juicing. Their juice is much more tart than the naval oranges we are used to.

This cake is made in a loaf pan, resulting in a much smaller portioned cake. The buttermilk poundcake is buttery and rich, and the blood oranges on top add quite a bit of tang.

Blood Orange Top

Ingredients:

  • Two blood oranges
  • 1/2 cup of sugar

Directions:

  1. Zest a blood orange and place the zest in a small mixing bowl. Peel the blood orange, then slice the meat into rounds. Place rounds in the same bowl as the zest and set aside.
  2. With the second orange, zest it into the bowl you are going to mix your cake batter in. After zested, juice the orange and place the juice in a small sauce pan.
  3. Add your sugar into the saucepan with the juice. Cook on medium until slightly reduced.
  4. Pour reduced juice mixture over orange rounds and set aside.

Blood Orange Upside-down Buttermilk Pound Cake

Ingredients:

  • 1 cup of softened butter
  • 1 cup of sugar
  • 4 eggs
  • 1/2 cup of buttermilk
  • 1/4 teaspoon of baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon of salt
  • 2 cups of flour
  • Zest of one lemon
  • Zest of one blood orange (from above)

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a bread loaf pan and set aside.
  2. Add your butter and sugar into the bowl with your zest (from above). Cream together until smooth.
  3. Add your eggs, one at a time, until fully incorporated. Mix in baking soda, salt, and lemon zest.
  4. Mix in flour and butter, alternating each until fully combined. Set aside.
  5. Arrange your oranges slices in a single layer on the bottom of your greased pan, then pour the reduced juice over the slices.
  6. Slowly pour your batter into the pan, as to not splatter the reduction.
  7. Bake on middle rack for one hour. Let cool fully before inverting cake from the pan.