Colonial Apple-Cranberry Pie




2 cups all purpose flour

3/4 cut yellow cornmeal

5 tablespoons sugar

1 1/4 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

1/2 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup plus 2 tablespoons solid vegetable shortening, room temperature

6 tablespoons (about) buttermilk


1 cup fresh cranberries

1 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

3 pounds Pippin apples, peeled, cored, cut into

1/2-inch thick slices

1/2 cup dried cranberries (Craisins)

5 tablespoons all purpose flour


For crust: Mix first 5 ingredients in processor. Add shortening and cut in until mixture resembles coarse meal. Blend in enough buttermilk by tablespoons to form dough that begins to clump together. Gather dough into ball; divide in half. Flatten each half into disk. Wrap each disk in plastic and chill 45 minutes. (Can be made 1 day ahead.)

For filling: Position rack in lowest third of oven and preheat to 375 F.

Coarsely chop cranberries with sugar and pumpkin pie spice in processor. Transfer mixture to large bowl. Add apples, dried cranberries and flour and toss well.

Roll out 1 ball of dough between sheets of waxed paper to 13-inch round. Peel off top sheet of paper; invert dough into 9 1/2-inch-diameter deep-dish glass pie dish. Peel off paper. Fold under overhanging dough to form double-thick edge. Crimp edge. Roll out remaining dough disk on lightly floured surface to 1/8-inch-thick round. Use a cookie cutter or sharp knife to cut designs from the dough (leaves are suggested.). Slightly mound filling in pie dish. Arrange leaves around edge of pie and all over top, overlapping decoratively. Brush pastry all over with buttermilk.

Place pie on baking sheet. Bake 45 minutes. Cover pie with foil and continue baking until juices bubble thickly and crust browns, about 35 minutes more. Transfer pie to rack and cool 1 hour. Serve warm or at room temperature with ice cream.   Maybe that is what Jane Champion did wrong. Turned violent when she found she didn’t have a food processor and a freezer for the ice cream. Puritans are known to have been unforgiving on electrical appliances.

Preheat to 425



Cutting butter into sifted flour measured by feel,

Baker envies the muse on card 3 by 5.

Channeling a homesteader’s lost culinary skill,

Hands move anxious with a primal drive.


Deftly rolling to line a geometric design.

Bursting with promise, fresh fruit with no flaw.

Hand full of spice no need for red wine

Marry to sweetness as pure as spring thaw.


Heating the wonder of nature’s pure gifts

Perfection’s aroma fills the home with a sigh.

Steam arms embrace by heaven’s richest kiss.

Family wisdom tempts the heart’s hungry eye.


The golden disk nests in a tin grandma sent.

Sliced while warm, no cream piled high.

The perfection guarantees the time to present,

An award for the first Pulitzer pie.