Raspberry/Blueberry Custard Pie

IMG_1899There are lots of concerns with the new administration, from what will they do to promote abortion to how will they handle the ongoing leftist “protests” in Oregon that the mainstream media is finally willing to call “riots.”  And how is this any different from last summer?  It’s not.

But life goes on, even with the ongoing challenges that take me back to the ’60s when national guards were called out to the Watts riots in LA’s streets and students were shot on Kent State’s campus in Ohio.  And the USA is still the greatest nation in the world, where more people want to come than leave.  Wondering why some of the leftists in 2016 that said they would move to Canada if Trump was elected chose not to go?

Well, here in the hinterland where many of us deplorable conservatives live, there is nothing more patriotic that Red, White and Blue . . . well, off-white, anyway; kinda yellow as custard tends to be, but you get the idea.

Anyhow, Anita and I needed (? 🙄) a dessert as we had finished off the others I have baked and since I am enjoying my new-found “hobby” of baking, I decided to bake a pie with some fruit she had purchased on her last outing to the grocery store.  We both love custard, so I put together what I recently learnt about making this delicious dessert, added some fruit and voila, try this one.  It’s easy and hard to mess up!

Ingredients (which I always recommend you assemble before even turning on the oven)

IMG_1870

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 9″ pie crust
  • 1 cup milk (anything from skim to whole, your choice)
  • 3/4 cup cream (heavy, whipping, light, or half & half, your choice)
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup of raspberries/blueberries (~1/2 pound)
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground nutmeg

To blind-bake (pre-bake) the pie crust, line the chilled crust with foil or parchment paper, and fill it with pie weights or dried beans.  This prevents the crust from bubbling up and reducing the volume of filling you can put in it.  I used another pie tin weighted with a mixing bowl; worked like a charm.
Bake the crust at 375⁰F for 20 minutes.  Remove it from the oven, and gently remove the foil or parchment with the weights or beans.
Return the crust to the oven for 10 to 15 more minutes, until it is very light golden brown all over.  If the edges of the crust start to become too brown, cover them with a pie shield or strips of aluminum foil.  Remove the crust from the oven and cool completely while you make the filling.

  • To make the filling: Start by thoroughly whisking together the eggs, sugar, and cornstarch in a medium bowl.
  • IMG_1873Combining the milk, cream, and salt in a medium-sized saucepan. Heat the mixture until small bubbles form around the edges, and steam starts to wisp from the surface; this is how you “scald” milk.
  • Pour about 1/4 of the hot milk/cream over the egg mixture, stirring well.  After this is mixed, pour the  egg mixture into the remaining hot milk/cream, stirring well.
  • Pour the custard through a sieve into another bowl to strain out any possible bits of cooked egg.  Stir in the vanilla extract.
  • Gently turn the raspberries and blueberries into the mix. Some like the fruit to be throughout the pie, not just on top.  If you want to use more fruit, be sure to reduce other items in the mix to avoid making too much filling, e.g., milk, sugar or egg.  I would stick with whole milk and heavy cream if you do this.
  • Pour the warm filling into the baked, cooled crust.  Sprinkle the nutmeg evenly over the top.
  • Cover the edges of the pie with a pie shield or strips of aluminum foil to prevent over-browning.  If there is excess filling, use some silicone cupcake “tins” or a separate pie dish.  (Keep an eye on the extras as these will bake faster than the pie; how quickly depending on how much and whether you place them above or below the pie.)
  • Place the pie onto your oven’s middle rack and bake it for 35 to 40 minutes at 400⁰F, or until the custard is set at the edges but still a bit wobbly in the center. The temperature of the pie at the center should be between 170°F and 180°F.
  • Remove the pie from the oven, and place it on a rack to cool. Be careful if the pie is not fully set; this should be okay as it will stiffen as it cools.  When it’s completely cool, refrigerate until you’re ready to serve.
  • Store any leftovers in the refrigerator for several days.

Notes: the cornstarch will firm the custard up much better than recipes that lack this.  The heavy cream and 2% milk worked fine for me, but if you use lighter cream or milk, you may not get the more solid texture that Anita and I enjoy.
You can use 4 large eggs and more fruit, but you will need “extra” cups for the excess and cut the cornstarch by half or completely.  If you use a larger pie crust, you can adjust the time, but watch it closely toward the end, as the last few minutes the pie really firms up fast.  Over-baking it will make the custard slightly chalky and dry.

From the ridiculous to the sublime, next Saturday I plan to post THE MOST IMPORTANT BLOG I have ever written.  Hope you come back and check that one out.

Intermezzo: Election Embroilments Endure a Little Longer

2020-12-09 Intermezzo Election Embroilments

“A lie told once remains a lie, but a lie told a thousand times becomes the truth.”  Joseph Goebbels, the Nazi Minister of Propaganda, whose father was Jewish.

In these troubled times, it is disconcerting that there is so much confusion over the news outlets that are supposed to inform us.  Mark Twain once remarked, “If you don’t read the newspaper you are uninformed, if you do read the newspaper you are misinformed.”  How much more so when a president accuses media of fomenting fake news, and then the media cooperates by declaring an “official” winner in a disputed election, as if the Associated Press or CNN or Fox News had the prerogative to make claims that are the exclusive domain of the Electoral College.  Fortunately this will all be over soon as far as the election is concerned.  January 20, which is the only certain deadline in the Constitution, is barely over a month away.

2020-12-09 Biden vs Trump

But I fear for our Democratic Republic that the troubles that plagued Trump’s summer of 2020 will not go away whether Biden or Trump prevail by January 20, 2021.  “Trumpers” will likely not riot en masse in response to a Biden win as some of the pundits are predicting.  Conservatives tend to be more conservative than that.  Sporadic and short-lived eruptions of fringe-right groups may occur, but even most conservatives will condemn them.

On the other hand, groups of Biden’s supporters are expecting big allowances and favored treatment if he wins.  If Biden does not acquiesce, but instead attempts to “reach across the aisle” as he has in the past as a senator, even he will inflame riotous antagonism to his attempts to unify the nation.  If Trump pulls a rabbit out of the hat and wins, all hell will break loose with almost civil war arising from the factions that supported Biden.  If Biden finally prevails some on the left are calling for a “scorched earth policy” for anyone who even considered supporting Trump.

My encouragement to Christ-followers is to recognize that Father will decide which of the contenders will be sworn in as president on January 20, 2021.  Daniel said explicitly that He removes kings [presidents] and sets up kings [presidents].”  Paul reaffirmed this perspective to the Romans, “Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.  Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God.

We might ask incredulously, “Really? Lenin, Hitler, Mussolini, Stalin, Pol Pot, Mao, Xi, Putin, Bush, Obama, Trump?”  Let’s address this more fully after 2021 has begun, but suffice it to say for now, the Bible is explicit: “There is NO authority except from God.”

In spite of the troubling news about Smartmatic, Sequoia Voting Systems, and Dominion Voting Systems, when we think are in control, or they think “they” are in control, there is actually a Sovereign Ruler who can override any of our apparent tricks or decisions.  Even that democratic defender of  deterrence, the ever-honest-1/164th-Native-American Elizabeth Warren worried about the electronic voting systems as recently as December, 2019.  But she and her colleagues did not have to worry.  The international intrigue that surround the electronic voting systems will in the end only fulfill Father’s decision.

In the 18th century, Joseph de Maistre said “Democracies get the leaders they deserve.”  So it is that Jimmy Carter was our last really honest and Godly president, and he only lasted one term because of his commitment to do what really was best for the nation as a whole, instead of pandering to selfish special interest groups, as each subsequent president has increasingly done.

As long as we constantly look for our own personal advantage, for our own political goals and our own financial security we will miss what God intends for us: lives of peace, security, and blessing, but not blessing to sit back and enjoy, and let the rest of the world go to hell.  His blessings are always for the sharing of His Good News with others who are in need.

So while the election winds down to its conclusion, the pandemic keeps us from loved ones at the holidays, and wildfires burn up California while internationally alarmists warn of even greater so-called “climate-change crises,” remember Who is really in control.  And remember His love, even for His enemies, which at one time included you . . . and ME!  And follow in His steps.