Country Club Plaza Bed and Breakfast Pie Contest

In the October issue of the Southmoreland newsletter
we challenged our guests to submit a recipe for a pie contest and include a bit of history behind the recipe or a
brief explanation of why it’s a favorite.  With many submissions to choose
from it was a challenge to select a winner and alas we decided to proclaim a

The winners of the Pie Contest are
Kim Mitchell
for her Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Pie
Annie Herzig for Pear Gruyère Pie

Kim says “This is an Amish recipe that was
tweaked.  When I had my Kitchen/Deli store, this was my #1 pie.  I
would guess that I’ve made 1500 of them or more.  I’ve never given the
recipe out when asked before, but since your place is an absolute favorite of
mine and my daughters, well, here goes”. 
Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Pie

1 stick of butter melted (must be butter – no substitute!)
2 eggs
¾ c. quick oats
¾ c. brown sugar
¾ c. white syrup (Karo corn syrup)
2 handfuls of semi-sweet chocolate chips (milk chocolate chips will melt and blend in the other ingredients)
¾ c. chopped walnuts – optional  I stopped using nuts because of nut allergies and my Sr. customers got them caught in their dentures……

Mix all together; pour into unbaked pie shell; bake 1 hr. at 300 or 40 minutes at 350.  The pie will be a little wiggly when done – it will set up as it cools.  Serve with whipped cream.  Absolutely delightful if served warm.

 Annie wrote “This recipe
was inspired by a short-lived tv show called Pushing Daisies, about a pie maker
who found he could raise the dead simply by touching them (even rotten
fruit—hence baking perfect pies) with a touch of his finger. The show is
colorful, quirky and quite fairy tale-ish, making it feel very nostalgic. Pie,
too, is very nostalgic for many people, I think. Anyway, this was one of the
pies Ned, the pie maker created. I knew I had to try it someday when they
mentioned it on the show. Any combination of savory and sweet is right up my

Pear Gruyère Pie

Gruyère Pie Crust:
2 1/2 c. unbleached all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 tbsp. sugar
20 tbsp. unsalted butter, cut into 1 in pieces
3 oz. Gruyère, grated finely
6-7 tbsp. ice water

Whisk together the flour, salt, sugar and grated gruyere in a large mixing bowl. Using a food processor, mix butter and flour/cheese mixture until the largest butter chunks are the size of large peas.

Remove flour/cheese/butter mixture from food processor return it to the large mixing bowl. Sprinkle ice water over flour in increments of one tablespoon, toss with fork after each addition. Be careful not to add too much water. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight. Or if you are in a rush, toss the dough in the freezer for about an hour, when it’s solid yet still gives slightly under your touch, it’s ready to go.

Spiced Poached Pear Pie Filling:
3 lbs. Bartlett pears
1/4 c. white sugar
3/4 c. port wine
1 1/2 c. water
2 tsp. cornstarch
2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp. ginger
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
1/4 tsp clove
1 cinnamon stick
1 egg, lightly beaten (for crust)

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F.  Add sugar, wine, water, vanilla, cinnamon stick, ginger, nutmeg and clove into a large stock pot or dutch oven. Bring to a boil. Put an empty medium bowl into the freezer to chill. Peel and halve pears. Scoop the core and seeds out and then cut the halves in half. Once liquid mixture has come to a boil add cut pears. Simmer for about 20 minutes until the pears are tender. Using a slotted spoon remove the pear quarters from the poaching liquid and put them into the chilled bowl. Return the poaching liquid to a boil and reduce until you have about 3/4 of a cup of syrup. Add 2 teaspoons of cornstarch to the syrup to thicken the syrup further. Pour the syrup into a measuring cup and chill. In the meantime, roll out crust into two circles, one a bit bigger. Place one in pie dish. Remove the pears from the chilled bowl layer them into the bottom of the pie. Pour the syrup on top of the pears. Top with the smaller crust. Seal the crusts together using a fork or your fingers. Brush the top of the pie with the beaten egg, and make three parallel slits in the top crust to allow steam to escape. Or if you are feeling fancy pantsy, feel free to make decorative cutouts.

Put the pie in the oven, bake 30-40 minutes or until the crust is golden and you can see the filling bubble up between the slits in the crust. Cool and serve with vanilla ice cream.

Both Pies were made for our Thanksgiving Pie Fest and each lady will receive a
$50 Southmoreland Gift Certificate. Thanks to everyone who participated.

Mark Reichle and Nancy Miller
Southmoreland on the Plaza

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