Wednesday, March 23, 2011

There's More Than One Way to Cook A Goose

"There's more than one way to cook a goose," my Auntie used to say.

"There's more than one way from here to the Comedian's house in LA," is what I say.

When I'm driving I leave the freeway at Highland and drive through the city on FLAT streets in lots of traffic. The extra minutes it might take are just a few more minutes to enjoy NPR or the Book on Tape I'm listening to. When Santa Barbara drives, she takes the Canyon road. That's the road that twists and turns and climbs and falls. I don't like it. It takes too much concentration for me.

But I wasn't driving. I was the passenger and with Santa Barbara at the wheel the Canyon road was very beautiful. We were going along quite nicely until - well - until we were no longer going along nicely. Stop. Start. Stop. Start. After many minutes and a couple of miles of this, we came upon a detour that took us STRAIGHT up another canyon and through a residential neighborhood where there was a stop sign at the end of every block and we were one car of 100s of cars taking the detour. Start. Stop. Start. Stop. Straight up. Start. Stop. GRZZRGRGRGRZZZ said the car. Then we smelled smoke. The car did not respond to shifting gears. Santa Barbara pulled over and parked. What to do? What to do? 

Long story short, with the aide of cell phones, AAA and Cousin, we survived, of course. Cousin, visiting from the East Coast, arrived in her rental car with a gorilla suit in the back seat. (That's another story.) Cousin took us to the Comedian's house and AAA took the car to Santa Barbara's mechanic. After a nice visit and dinner, we drove the Comedian's car home. A memorable day. 

This weekend we will be returning the Comedian's car. I am planning to bring a pie. I'm thinking, "There is more that one way to bake a pie." To make it memorable, I'm making a teff crust. Today I practice. Today we will have Apple Teff Crumb Pie. If we love it, I will bake another for the Comedians.

Teff, the grain of champions.
The world's smallest grain, teff is said to be the secret behind the Ethiopian long distance runners strength, stamina and speed. It's got a nutty flavor. I buy Bob's Red Mill teff whole grain and  flour (and other gluten-free flours) at my local health food store.  You can order it on-line if it isn't available locally.

Apple - Teff Crumb Pie
I'll put a picture here when the light is better. It has turned into a stormy day in So Cal.
You can bake this pie in 30 minutes flat - if you buy the filling in a can (why not?).

1.  Preheat oven to 375 degrees.

2.  Without sifting, combine
     2 cups teff flour
     1/2 cup maple syrup
     1/2 cu unrefined corn or canola oil
     1/2 teaspoon salt

3. Reserve 1/2 cup dough for crumb crust

3.  Without rolling or refrigerating, press remaining dough with your fingers into a pie plate.

4.  Bake for 10 minutes.

5.  Add filling and and crumble remaining teff dough crumbs on top.

6. Bake for 10 minutes.

Allow to cool a bit before you cut it.

This crust can be used wherever you might use a sweet dessert crust, like a graham cracker crust. It is delicious. We love it. It is memorable and I will bake another for the Comedians this weekend.

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