Posts Tagged ‘Ina Garten’

There is nothing more “American” than apple pie… but when the leaves begin to turn and the air grows crisp every New Englander knows it is time for apple picking!  What is sad is the fact that this New England girl has never actually gone apple picking.  However, before I get evicted from the best place on earth, I do visit my local farm stands and orchards for all those wonderful varieties.  And for the donuts… oh, the apple cider donuts!

My Grandmother was the queen of apple pies.  Actually, she was queen of any pie really.  She was said to make two strawberry rhubarb pies… one for the dessert and one for her brother who would take his and hide it… eating it in secretive bliss without sharing a single crumb.  While she had some of the best fillings it was really her crust that was so wonderful.  Sadly, her recipe was never documented and was lost when she passed.  My guess is she used lard which would have been a standard in her era.

Now that I am living on the family land in the house where she was born… I felt it my mission to find a good crust recipe and perfect it.  There have been many recipes tried and many recipes rejected as just not “up to snuff”.  After all… I have some huge expectations to fill… or I might get haunted!  Finally, I have found a great recipe which I may eventually start to tinker with to make it my own but for now I wanted to share my find and my excitement.

Thanks to Ina Garten who published her Perfect Pie Crust recipe which yields two 10″ crusts.  I am also posting it below should the link ever fail…

Deep Dish Apple Pie! Crust from Ina Garten’s recipe.


  • 12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter
  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening
  • 6 to 8 tablespoons (about 1/2 cup) ice water


Dice the butter and return it to the refrigerator while you prepare the flour mixture. Place the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade and pulse a few times to mix. Add the butter and shortening. Pulse 8 to 12 times, until the butter is the size of peas. With the machine running, pour the ice water down the feed tube and pulse the machine until the dough begins to form a ball. Dump out on a floured board and roll into a ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Cut the dough in half. Roll each piece on a well-floured board into a circle, rolling from the center to the edge, turning and flouring the dough to make sure it doesn’t stick to the board. Fold the dough in half, place in a pie pan, and unfold to fit the pan. Repeat with the top crust.


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With the success of my Lemon Bars I thought I would try another creation from my favorite dish diva – Ina Garten aka The Barefoot Contessa

Mom and I love coconut but I wanted to take this creation to work and share the calories… so I combined the Halloween Holiday with a dessert option and viola!  Ghost Boo Cakes!!  Hopefully Ina won’t mind.

While you are shopping for the fresh ingredients required by the mix also pick up some chocolate icing or cake decorations… simply make the mix according to the package directions and then get creative for the holiday!  These were a huge hit at work and the calories were successfully shared!


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My trip to Ogunquit, Maine would not have been complete without a visit to Stonewall Kitchens.  This company has great jams, jellies and other products that not just sound mouth-watering, they really are mouth-watering! 

One chef in particular markets her products through Stonewall Kitchens… Ina Garten.  She is known on the Food Network as the Barefoot Contessa and her mixes, sauces and other products are divine – with all the butter, eggs and other ingredients that would make a nutritionist faint.  Perfect! 

In sampling all of the fine jams and relishes I came across a mix for Lemon Bars.  Now, I have made desserts from Ina’s mixes before and I was never disappointed.  I snapped up a box and waited for a friend’s cookout to unveil the creation.  It was a great success!! 

While I can’t give you the recipe… I certainly can steer you towards her mixes and encourage you to try them for yourself!  http://www.barefootcontessa.com/

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