An all too early morning was had today to celebrate Kate and Wills gettin’ hitched. I rolled out of bed, put on my fascinator and video chatted with one of my friends in London. I giggled when I turned on Twitter to find that many of my friends who were in the “I don’t care” crowd glued to the telly watching the event unfold.
The dress was gorgeous, Princesses Eugenie and Beatrice looked like the wicked step sisters, the tribute to Princess Diana was so sweet and the Queen wowed the crowd in butter yellow.
Westminster Abbey solidified it’s place in my heart as one of the most beautiful buildings in the world. I remember my first time stepping inside and just being in awe of it’s enormity and beauty.
With the royal wedding happening on Friday Pie Day, I had to do a themed pie. If you’re new to the blog, I am a bit Brit obsessed. And if you’re a grumpy so and so who hates love and pomp and circumstance, then I am sorry you will have to wade through that for this delicious pie. *wink*
For this recipe I wanted to recreate the Union Jack flag and use golden syrup approved by the Queen herself. I think it tastes like liquid brown sugar…it is amazing!
Royal Wedding Berry Pie (aka The Union Jack)
adapted from Martha Stewart’s Flag Berry Tarts recipe
1 Vanilla Shortbread Crust
8 oz. cream cheese
½ tsp. vanilla extract
½ cup creme fraiche
1 ½ cup confectioner’s sugar
4 oz. semisweet chocolate, melted
¼ cup golden syrup
6 large strawberries
2 ½ cups fresh blueberries
1 cup heavy cream for whipping
Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Bake shortbread crust until just starting to color, about 15 minutes. Cover edges with foil to prevent burning, and bake until crisp and dark golden brown, about 12 minutes more. Transfer to a wire rack; let cool completely.
With an electric mixer, beat cream cheese and vanilla in a large bowl until soft. Beat in the creme fraiche ¼ cup at a time. Fold in ½ cup of the confectioner’s sugar. Chill in the fridge for 2 hours.
Melt chocolate in a heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, stirring until smooth. Using the back of a spoon, spread the melted chocolate onto bottom the pie crust, and refrigerate until chocolate is set, about 10 minutes.
Using the back of a spoon, spread the cream mixture over the chocolate layer; set aside.
Heat golden syrup to thin. Wash and dry fruit before dipping into the golden syrup. Press the fruit into the cream to decorate as you wish!
In another bowl, beat cold heavy cream until it holds soft peaks. Gradually mix in 1 cup of confectioner’s sugar. Pour into a pastry bag or a plastic sandwich bag, cut off the tip and pipe the finishing touches.
What a whirlwind it’s been! I started this week out on the West Coast and have returned to the East Coast a few days ago, but my body still doesn’t know what time zone it’s in. It always seems like as soon as I get adjusted it’s time to leave.
I came home to lots of phone calls to make, emails to respond to, tweets to catch up on and lots of little tasks that just eat up your day when you’re running on West Coast time in NY.
I wanted to be ahead of the game this holiday and serve you up a pie for Easter. I got my Google on and typed in “Easter Pie” (next year maybe I will make a Passover Pie!) and scoured the pages for inspiration.
Apparently Italians have the lock down on Easter pie with entry after entry for an Italian Easter Pie. According to pie baker @molliebryan, Italian Easter pies are always savory…full of Italian meats and cheeses, but some of my other Twitter friends remember a sweet ricotta pie as their traditional Easter pie. Savory or sweet, all of these recipes look delicious.
My lovely logo darling, @stefnoble will be making a savory pie for her family similar to this one. I also thought I would be making a savory pie, but then @mprattico showed me a pie recipe with promises of tasting like cannoli, and hiding cinnamon, chocolate morsels and candied orange peels in it’s depths. How could I say no?
Pie adventure quotient filled with this recipe as I learned how to: drain ricotta* and make candied orange peels!
A cup of coffee and a slice of this pie would be the perfect end to your Easter meals.
*I lined a colander with paper towels and let drain over a dish for two hours before using.
Welcome to Friday Pie Day! For Your Pies Only is growing up and growing up means more responsibility, more chores and getting to stay up past 8PM on the weekend. Each Friday we’ll be featuring a new pie for you loves. Enjoy!
I’ve tackled turkey, chicken, sausage and steak pies, but I had yet to make a pork pie. After several sweet pies on the blog, a savory pie is so refreshing (Though I know there are a lot of sweet teeth out there!). A Google search for “pork pie” returned lots of British pork pies filled with aspics and ‘trotters’. In other words, recipes using meat jello and pig’s feet…while I am sure they’re delicious, I am just not there yet.
I also recently made a trip to our local restaurant supply shop for the very first time. What a glorious place. Shelf after shelf of kitchen goodies; a cook’s wonderland. Among my purchases were lots of individual mini pie pans, perfect for some little piggy pies.
For us here in NY, spring has almost sprung, even though I am sure we are in for a bit more snow before the end of May (this IS Syracuse I am living in). The weather is still chilly enough to make these pork pies cooked with beer, bacon, caramelized red onions and topped with cheese which are fairly hearty. They’re a contrast to what I hope my summer pies will be with fresh fruit and veg. Until then, snug in your Snuggies and fill your bellies with a beer and bacon pie treat.
1 lb. roast pork loin, cut into small pieces
6 oz. apple smoked bacon cooked, cut into small pieces
…where social media and passionate food lovers meet!
This week my Twitter world got a little smaller when I got to meet several people I have been connecting with through both my @SunnyinSyracuse and @foryourpiesonly accounts.
My Alma Mater, Syracuse University, has an alumni speaker series and their most recent speaker was amazing food blogger Marla Meridith. She runs her own site called Family Fresh Cooking which is all about whole, organic, sustainable, yummy foods that are accessible to everyone. While the amount of butter and sugar on our blogs might compare to be different, we share many an interest. We both get excited about new foods and ingredients, creating foods and showcasing them…an art within itself, feeding family and friends and using social media to get our story out there.
Marla’s presentation was great and I learned really valuable food blogging tips:
If you want to run with the big dogs, attend a conference that deals with your focus and learn from the big dogs. Nothing can replace learning from those you admire. No matter what your interest is, this piece of information applies. Conferences are a great way to network and learn. I am so excited that I will be attending the Big Summer Potluck part deux event this summer and get to meet more of the food bloggers I look up to!
When not blogging, community building is essential. Boost others up as much as they boost you. I love this and totally agree. Are you looking for ideas on how to build online community and use social media to market yourself? There are tons of books, but the ones I have read and loved are Trust Agents and UnMarketing. I would consider these must reads for people starting out in using social media to promote ANYTHING.
Stick to a schedule. The thought being that your readers know when you post and look for it! Sticking to a schedule creates a sense of trust, reliability, and excitement for your readers. This is something I am definitely going to work on!
Thank you Marla for such great information and I plan to put it to good use!
What is Wegmans you say? I would say 95% of my ingredients for the pies you see on this blog come from there. Wegmans is the happiest place on earth! It is a Northeast supermarket chain and anyone who has ever visited one can probably tell you how amazing it is. Also, if they don’t have one near them, they will tell you how much they miss Wegmans. I made a friend in a city without a one merely because I flashed my Wegmans card when getting money out of my wallet and she got excited because she had one too. Alec Baldwin’s mom refuses to move from Syracuse to L.A. because she would have to leave Wegmans. People are so in love with Wegmans (in class they called them Wegmaniacs…*points to self* guilty) and one of the best things about the company is that they love their customers back!
Numbers are nice…smiles are better.
How can you not love a company like that? They totally mean it too. To get an idea of just HOW amazing they are, you have to read about the time my friend Kelly Lux tweeted about a product she loved and how Wegmans gave her the royal treatment. The best part is that Kelly’s story is not the exception, it’s the rule.
After connecting with them a lot on Twitter, I couldn’t wait to hear them speak. If you love Wegmans, I truly encourage people to talk to them on their blog or their Twitter and tell them @SunnyinSyracuse sent you ;)
I definitely feel like I got to learn from the big dogs this week and it gave me a boost to get things going for the weeks ahead!