It shall be this one's duty to offer recipes and menus. These will be easy to follow, and tested to be good enough that a slave would allow his Master to serve it to Master's Guests and reflect only the best of his Master.
For far worse than Master's anger is Master's disappointment.
Thursday, September 11, 2014
Chess Pie or Transparent Pudding
Pie or Transparent Pudding
fine old pie was introduced to me as a kid by my
Elma. In the old South it was a favorite.
refrigeration, many pies would go bad. When taken from the oven, they
were put in special cabinets known as pie chests with screening over
holes in the sides allowing the air to cool. This kept the flies off.
The pie was mostly sugar which is a natural preservative. So these
pies could keep for more than a week setting in these chests or “Pie
say the name “Chess” came from the habit of dropping the final
letter of the word “Chest”. But that is just a guess. Frankly I
never saw one last long because it was so good. Even if they only
served it in a tiny sliver. Be warned as to its sweetness!
Great-grandmother's recipes were only lists of ingredients so that
she would not forget anything. slave has searched for decades to find
just the right amounts of each. This is the result.
is presented here to honor a new friend, Capt. Eric. A true gentleman
and son of the south. It might not be just the taste that he
remembers, however the chances are it has been a long time since he
has had any. Anyway, I hope he and “you all” enjoy this sliver
of the past.
cup (1 stick) butter, softened
teaspoon vanilla extract
unbaked (9-inch) pie shell
foil on your pizza stone. Set in middle of oven and let it preheat to
used a frozen pre-made pie crust which is set inside of the same
sized pie pan for strength when moving. Don't just trust those foil
the mixer, cream the sugar and butter together then add the flour.
a medium bowl, whisk the eggs, cream, and vanilla together for 30
seconds, until they are well combined.
this into the sugar as the mixer is running. (Some add a tbs of white
vinegar at this point)
that run until the filling is
smooth and there are no visible lumps. Pour the filling into the
shell. Be careful and do not
fill to the top!
the top with ground nutmeg. Place
on the foil covered pizza
stone already in the oven and
let bake for
until golden brown.
filling will swell up high and might spill over: that is the reason
for the foil! When the pie cools, it will collapse and probably
crack. This is normal for this type of pie. So keep an eye on it! If
you notice the crust is getting too dark cover it with strips of
pie will continue to cook after you take it out. So it is OK if it is
just a little jiggly when you put it on the cooling rack.
Elma Lulu Merrick Bickel Oct 22 1876 - Jan 19 1972
me introduce you to my great-grandmother Elma, as slave remembers
“Why are you on the floor, Grandma? What’s wrong? Did you fall?”
I cried out to my great-grandmother and ran to her. She raised her
head off her kitchen floor and smiled up at me.
laughed, “Oh my darling Danny, nothing is wrong. “Come over here
and look what I’m doing.” She had her carpenters pencil and a
rusty old piece of metal she called a “right angle”. She had
been drawing lines on her linoleum.
how I hold the right angle as I slowly slide the pencil down the side
just using it as a guide. “That way the line is straight.”
tongue slowly showed on her lower lip as she drew. I knew that look
well, she was building something. Being in her eighties never kept
her from doing things that were very un-grandma like.
Grandma, why are you drawing on the floor?” I did not say,
“If I had tried that, you would tell me to go find the stick.”
that was the worst part of a “Switching”. I wouldn’t want to
get a very big stick because it would hurt too much. On the other
hand if I got one too small, I would just get sent out again. Then
I'd get even more whacks on the back of my legs. Grandma would
hardly ever switch me but I knew from experience what she
eyes sparkled up at me. She knew what I was thinking. “Now honey,
there is a difference between scribbling and carefully marking a
project. “See how my lines make a pattern?”
Grandma, why draw a pattern on the floor” I asked.
I thought the floor looked rather plain. “Once I get these drawn
I’ll come back with a small brush and paint. “You’ll see. “It
will look like I have expensive tile down here, or maybe a fancy
looked around, “Would you like to help me?” Her voice lowered to
that special tone she used. This was going to be a “secret”, I
loved that tone!
looked me in the eyes and said: “Now, you don’t need to go tell
your “Ore-mom” about this until we’re done.” How did she
read my mind so well? Grandma was so much more fun than “Ore-mom”.
There were “special projects” nearly everyday up here in the
attic. This was made into an apartment for my great-grandmother.
brother and I loved having her around. We never knew what she would
do next. Some days the attic would fill with the sound of the old
reed organ she would pump with her feet. Other times, we would hear
hammering or the “rasp ah, rasp ah, rasp” of her hand saw. Life
with her around was an adventure! So I was quick to join in.
why does Ore-mom get upset when you do something up here?”
Danny, your “Ore-mom” is my daughter”, she had slowed her words
watching me pull the pencil. “Yes, some times she worries because
she loves us so much.”
Grandma, why does she have to fuss so much about everything, all the
Danny, watch what you are doing there. “Here’s an eraser, we’ll
just rub that part out. “Try not to hold the right angle so hard,
when you hold it too hard it slips. “As to Lura worrying, now
where should I start with that?, she said absent minded toward the
window. “They had a tough time when she and your “Oredaddy”
were married and your mommy was about your age. “Everybody had to
work very hard to make ends meet.”
that was a long time ago. “Why does she get mad when you are
building something up here?”
that, young man, is the type of thing I want you to think about and
come up with the answer for me, OK?”
our lines drawn, (she had me do mine over), she pried open a small
can of brown enamel. It smelled horrible! I yanked my head back and
made a face. I was used to such nice smells in her kitchen. Her
food was never fancy, but all of the love she put into it made for
some of my best taste memories. This sure wasn’t cooking. She was
stirring the enamel with an old screwdriver.
Grandma, that’s some strange soup your stirring.”
let out a cackle. It was a special kind of laugh she did when
something caught her “funny bone” that she hadn't seen coming. “I
guess your old Grandma is always stirring up something here, isn’t
was never too busy. She never had to finish her book. She never had
to ask: “Don’t you see I’m talking on the phone?”
made no difference what she was doing. If my brother or I
interrupted something, she would give us the biggest smile and use it
as a chance to show us how to do something. If that wouldn’t work,
she'd say, “pull up a chair.” Then she would tell us a story as
she kept working. She had all kinds of stories about stuff that
happened when she was young. There were times we thought she was
being boring on purpose and excuse ourselves to go off and play.
Grandma was living with us now and I could come back for cookies and
stories whenever I felt like it.
I think: “Oh, if only.”
also today, is wonderful for I get to serve my Master Indy. It truly
is a fulfillment of what I was born to do.
satisfy and restore.
nourish, support and maintain.
gratify, spoil, comfort and please,
nurture, assist, and sustain
buy slave's cookbook:
Little Black Book of Indiscreet Recipes by Dan White