That’s what the song says, minus my little parenthetical addition.
And, sure enough, we did.
If you would have told me last year that I, my husband, and my two-year-old would drive to Cape Cod from California in the summer of 2020, much head-scratching would have ensued. 2020. No one saw it coming.
For a week, we created a friend/spiritual family pod in this gorgeous Brewster, Massachusetts home. It was exactly what our souls needed.
On the Thursday evening, we dressed up in the nicest things we’d brought, planned an extra special dinner menu (although, wait, that was every night…) and had a “backyard party” of sorts. We ate outside (you’ll see the bottle o’ bug spray in an upcoming photo, mixed in with the prettier things on the table!) To elevate the night further, the presence of a pie was certainly required. And, with our friend Jonny in mind, it needed to be a gluten-free pie.
In the past, when preparing desserts for friends who aren’t able to eat gluten, I’ve tended to go towards pies with meringue shells (made with no flour – mainly egg whites!) or veer away from serving pie at all. Even for this occasion, my original plan was to make a recipe from Ken Haedrich’s Pie cookbook, Black Forest Mini Angel Pies. Those would have been fantastic, except after I acquired all of the ingredients, including a whole bottle of cream of tartar, I had a forehead-slapping realization that I was 3,000+ miles from my KitchenAid. Meringue, which requires a hefty amount of high-speed whipping, was out of the question.
It was high, high time to try a gluten free pastry recipe, one that wouldn’t be just a passable shell for a pie filling, but delicious in its own right. Easy to work with and roll out was another quality on my wish list.
Et voila: Gluten Free on a Shoestring has a recipe for an extra-flaky pie pastry made with sour cream (I substituted Greek yogurt) that “rolls out beautifully” – their words, but I totally, totally agree. Helen, always prepared, had brought along some Cup4Cup gluten free flour, which happened to be one of the brands recommended in the linked recipe.
Here’s a slightly misleading photo in which I am rolling the pie crust with a bottle of Cape Cod vodka, not because I was trying to set up a clever photo to tell you I used vodka in the crust (I STILL have not tried this, to my great shame as a pie experimentess), but because it was the closest thing to a rolling pin in the vicinity. The crust rolled out even more easily than my standard gluten-y go-tos.
Remember all those cherries I bought thinking I was making Black Forest mini pies? Oh yeah, me too. Throw those in the filling FOR SURE. Peaches and I think maybe one nectarine too. It’s August, I don’t remember July details anymore.
We’ll circle back to see how the pie turned out shortly. Let’s take a look at what else is happening meanwhile at our celebratory Thursday evening, alongside a large pitcher of this Watermelon Mint Lemonade.
My life doesn’t always look it’s straight out of Food and Wine magazine, but when it does…I ain’t complaining. Thank you Levi for these UNREAL oysters, pictured topped with herb butter before being grilled to perfection.
As the writer of Ecclesiastes says, “I have noticed one thing, at least, that is good. It is good for people to eat, drink, and enjoy their work under the sun during the short life God has given them.” I have noticed it too, how good it is to gather around a table.
That pie though. It’s really just showing off here with its beautiful peekaboo crust, as if to prove how easy this pastry is to work with. We all thoroughly enjoyed it, part and parcel. And I think it was particularly special for Jonny, who doesn’t get to eat pie pastry as often as, say, I do.
And behold: there was homemade whipped cream to be eaten with our pie. Remember though, AirBnBs don’t have stand mixers. So, what did we do? The cream was poured in a cold metal bowl and passed around the table for each person to take a turn at beating until his or her arm grew tired.
This, my friends, is dedication to the art of eating pie.
Photo credit for almost all of these photos goes to NOT ME. Helen and her 4-year-old daughter Bella in particular get lots of credit. The portraits of myself, Pippa, and the table in the back garden are all Bella’s work. The close-ups of my gorgeous friends Maggie and José are Helen’s photos. She also captured the cuteness below.
I have a lot more summer pie stories coming your way. Let’s just say, if your garden is growing massive zucchini right now, but you prefer the taste of apple pie, send me a message. Yes, you heard that correctly. ❤
EDIT: It now appears that 4-year-old Bella the budding photographer also took the pictures of Maggie and José. Gotta give credit where credit is due. She is obviously going to be famous someday.