pie wisdom; it's more than a recipe

i don't like making dinner.

i mean, cooking doesn't bother me, but i think at this point i'm just so used to the picky eaters in my house that i associate cooking food with half of the people looking at me with tortured eyes.
i'm not that bad of a cook!
lots of things go through my head...
...i remember eating the things MY mom made whether i liked it or not,
...there are children who don't have enough to eat
...i have created this by spoiling them.
but, i have decided, at this point, to just let it go.
they are picky.
most of them don't like my food.
so i am going to put less energy into making dinner.
and more into...pie!
and fun stuff.
while we are having turkey sandwiches AGAIN for dinner tonight, i might make sugar cookies with them this afternoon.
and while you might want to judge, i say, it's neat that your kids eat your food...go pay attention to THEM...i'm eating cookies.

with all that said, i want to share with you a little wisdom from the bible....
the bible of cooking.

Good old Joy
my mom gave this to me the year i got married.

lots of people have asked about my mini jar pies.
and while i could give you lots of different recipes, i thought i'd just point you toward inventing your own!
that's my style!
i'm not one to follow a recipe to the tee.

joy of cooking taught me this basic fruit pie filling recipe.
this makes enough for one big pie or 9 jar pies.

5 cups sliced fruit or berries
3/4 cup sugar
3 tblspns cornstarch
1 tblspn fresh lemon juice
1/8 tsp salt
2 tblspns cold butter cut into tiny peices

now, i sometimes do less sugar if the fruit is really sweet.
i sometimes don't use the lemon juice or salt.
just use your own judgement.
they've always turned out great. lemon juice or not.
it's not worth going to the store.
sometimes you just need pie.

as for the crust, i use trader joes frozen crusts.
they are great.
they run out around thanksgiving and then again in summer when the fruit is great, so if you see them, buy 5.
they can just hang out in the freezer until you NEED them!

for 9 jar pies i use a box and half. three crusts.
i thaw the crusts, uses the jar lids to cut out 9 circles for the tops of the pies, and then use the rest to press into the jars covering up the sides.

fill those guys with filling and cover with the circles and use a fork to crimp the tops tot he crust on the sides.
then vent the top by sticking a knife in the top a couple times. i like to make it a star.

i bake mine on a cookie sheet, on the bottom half of the oven at 400 degrees for 25 minutes.
then move them to the top for maybe 10 minutes.

bubbling! mmmm

and if the kids don't like them.... GREAT!!!

what kind of fruit are you gonna try?

i've made peach and boysenberry and apple.
i want to try cherry next.

to me, the best way to do it is with fresh picked fruit!
so get cute pickers!

these can be frozen unbaked.
just pop the jar lids on them and put them in the freezer!
you can then put them in the oven frozen,
just add a few extra minutes on to the baking time.



  1. "go pay attention the them...I'm eating cookies" -- perfection :)

  2. my kids are 8 & 9, and its was evident right in the early days of introducing 'real food' that i had 2 'picky eaters' on my hands, in other words, 2 kids that were simply not motivated by food. they could take it or leave it (read - totally willing to leave it without another thought)at every turn. so, after struggling for about a year in those early days (following the advice and habits recommended by our a dietician, our dr., books on getting kids to eat, etc), my hub's and i made the decision to let it go, forgo all conventional attitudes about making your kids eat the same meal as you do every night, and opted instead to focus on the healthy foods that they did enjoy and were very much willing to eat. we decided as long as they ate a balanced meal 3 times a day, with all the food groups included, we were going to have healthy happy kids. so for the last 8 years i've basically made 3 meals every time we sit down to eat - my daughters and my son's (slightly different from one another), and then something my husband and i both enjoy. if my kids are happy eating plain whole grain bread (don't even THINK about putting butter or mayo on it, it will not be eaten???) aged cheddar (on the side), plain grilled chicken, fresh red peppers, baby carrots, apples, and a glass of milk twice a day for THE REST OF THEIR CHILDHOOD YEARS - WHATEVER! their choices are super healthy, so i'm not going loose sleep trying to get them to eat pizza and butter chicken. the extra prep work pays off ten fold in the fact that the table is no longer a place of stress - we actually get to sit and enjoy our time together. so i'd say if your kids like turkey sandwiches for dinner every night, go for it! if they're having something from all the food groups at every meal, they're healthy, they're happy, your happy, your husband's happy, the stress is gone, and your free to enjoy cooking again, and preparing meals for you and your hub's that you can enjoy together without all the negative emotion. turkey sandwiches at one end of the table, _______ (insert favorite adult fare) at the other. that's my thoughts on it anyway! cheers, beth

  3. I LOVE JOY of Cooking!
    mine is getting full of handwritten notes and spilled
    on pages! I love the Chicken Pot Pie from there, except I kind
    of changed it, but use the basics of it! YUMMY!
    my kids can be super picky also!

  4. these are so super duper cute! i want to make some at some point this summer. probably peach or blueberry...topped with homeade vanilla ice cream :) mmmmm.

  5. Going to make these this weekend... if I made them on Sunday and served them on Monday night for a dinner party, would they keep? Have you ever done that or tried to reheat them?

    Also, do I need to spray nonstick spray before putting the pie crust in?

    - Kristina

  6. "and if they don't like them...GREAT!" hahaha!
    i WISH my kids didn't want to eat every three minutes! gahhhh!
    so i have a bunch of peaches RIGHT NOW and i'm making these...TOMORROW.
    whether they like it, or not! ;)
    thanks, sweetie!

  7. you had me at i an freeze them and put them in the oven frozen! that's a dessert i can handle. thanks.