Archive for the ‘Things I’ve Made’ Category

Beginner’s Guide to Cross Stitch

This month’s beginner’s guide was supposed to be about rock climbing, but I may or may not have been the victim of a rock climbing related scam(??? or I’m just unusually bad at reading comprehension, I guess). Anyway, I have now vowed never to rock climb and so my back up thing was cross stitching. This is kind of cheating because I have actually cross stitched before, when I was 13, out of a kit. But this is the big leagues now, my friends. Observe:

Got myself a plastic frame and everything

Got myself a plastic frame and everything

I got this cool Disney Villains pattern on Etsy and had to assemble the supplies myself.

Everyone is cuter as cross stitch

Everyone is cuter as cross stitch

Luckily, one of my coworkers was giving away a ton of cross stitching supplies, including a lot of embroidery floss! Yay! Hardcore cross stitchers agree that the best way to store your thread for easy access is to wind the skein around a little card, write the number of the color, and arrange them in a plastic box like so:

Numerically they don't make a rainbow, sadly

Numerically they don’t make a rainbow, sadly

I like this pattern because each figure doesn’t take a very long time, so you really feel like you’re getting somewhere after only an hour. I’ve probably been doing at least 30 minutes a day for a few weeks now. Yay!!

The pink line is to measure the middle to know where to start. It gets taken out at the end

The pink line is to measure the middle to know where to start. It gets taken out at the end

I wasn’t able to finish this project in a month, but I’m excited to have my first Legit piece of cross stitch art. I’ve read some articles online about how to frame them properly so I’ll try that when the time comes.

The back is less pretty

The back is less pretty

Resources:
Buzzfeed Beginner Cross Stitch Guide
Framing Finished Cross Stitch

Previously: Beginner’s Guide to Calligraphy
Next: ???

Beginner’s Guide to Weaving

One of my goals this year is to try a new thing every month, and for January I took an intense week-long weaving course at the John C. Campbell Folk School. The Folk School itself is pretty incredible, and you should definitely check it out, but today we’re here to talk about weaving. On a four harness floor loom. If you’re a beginner and just want to get your feet wet weaving, I’m not sure I’d recommend a floor loom, because even the small model (“Baby Wolf”) that we used was a beast.

They all had names, and mine was Osma

They all had names, and mine was Osma

Before I went, I watched a bunch of youtube videos of other people using looms, in the hopes that it would help me understand the big picture. It kind of helped, I guess, although the process was still way more complicated than I thought. But before you even get to the loom, you need to pick your yarn and colors and do a bunch of math. Surprise! Every “feminine art” is actually all about math in the end; the patriarchy of science is built on lies (duh).

warpweft

Do you remember what weaving is from those little pot holder looms? The vertical fibers are the warp, which gets secured to the loom through a lengthy process of measuring, adjusting tension, and threading things with hooks. The horizontal threads are what you add through the process of weaving by moving your shuttle back and forth.

This is how you measure it out/set it up to go on the loom

This is how you measure it out/set it up to go on the loom

That’s a warping board, if you want to know. Then you secure the warp you made on there with ties and transfer it over to the loom where the finnicky process begins.

Not pictured: me constantly asking my neighbor if this is right

Not pictured: me constantly asking my neighbor if this is right

That board with all the nails sticking in it is used to measure your warp out evenly to the width of the finished project.

Note the shoelaces and coffee can: technical weaving tools

Note the shoelaces and coffee can: technical weaving tools

Then you wind the rest of that sucker on the back of the loom making sure to keep your tension even.

Have fun! This takes hours

Have fun! This takes hours

Then you thread each individual strand through the eye of a heddle (the metal needle-like things) in a specific order/pattern depending on the pattern you want to make on your finished work. Because this was a four-harness loom, there were four rows of heddles. The most basic threading would be harness 1, harness 2, harness 3, harness 4 repeat, but you can also get fancy.

LOL you thought the threading was over

LOL you thought the threading was over

NOW you’ve got to thread every individual strand through this metal contraption called a reed (because they were once made from legit reeds). Don’t skip any spaces! Unless you’re supposed to, of course.

Tie that sucker on to the front!

Tie that sucker on to the front!

Now you are finally ready to weave! Once you tie up your pedals to specific harnesses and wind bobbins and what not. Pressing down on the pedals (okay, TREADLES, fine–I did learn the correct vocab) will lift certain harnesses, allowing you to pass your shuttle underneath those threads and above the others.

Yay, weaving!

Yay, weaving!

Best Part: My cool weaving class friends! I feel like we were a weaving support group.
Worst Part: Tuesday at noon when we had had NINE HOURS of class and still were not weaving.
Will I do this again?: I’m not rushing out to buy a four harness floor loom because I didn’t enjoy it enough to be worth the time and expense. But it was fun to try, and maybe a lap loom will be in my future.

I also made up a weaving song, set to the tune of Reading Rainbow because I was weaving a rainbow scarf:

Shuttle goes through the shed,
Do some math in your head
Look around the room
We’re all on looms
Weaving class!
I CAN WEAVE ANYTHING!
With sort of a plan
And a coffee can
Weaving class!

Yay!

Yay!

Next: Beginner’s Guide to Calligraphy

13-year-old Patricia Wrote the Best Story You Have Ever Read

So while giving James Fox a dramatic reading of my 7th grade journal, because that’s just the kind of thing we do, I made a shocking archaeological discovery!! Namely that when high school me started to transcribe my journals she left whole sections out, I assume because she thought they were too embarrassing. Revisionist Journal Transcribing! Shame on you, 16-year-old Me! Shame!!

This is especially upsetting because she decided to leave out literally the best part of the entire corpus of Things I Have Ever Written. I read it aloud to James and we both almost choked to death on our laughter and/or admiration for Middle School Patricia’s genius. This story has everything: love, betrayal, ridiculous unpronounceable names, fake olde-timey language, a commercial break. Oh my god the commercial break. James agreed to illustrate it for me to fully bring MSP’s vision to life. Prepare to be spellbound by MSP’s brilliance. Also her spelling, all of which I left intact.

Aulderon: Penons in the dust

Peenon_01

“Twas some time ago,” the elderly hero said, “but it seemth to me that in my youth I was the finest knight on life. I strove to saveth that fair country which once was from sheer turmoil. It hath been many a long year since that time of fair Aulderon. The castles hath all turneth to rumble heaps and the peonons of mine fallen comrades doth lie buried in the dust of antiquity. Why shouldst I repeat those far off memories, that couldth easily hath been but a dream in my withered mind?”

“Please,” begged the small boy, “I want to hear a story, Grandfather. Tell me of Aulderon and its castles, knights, and kings. Tell of your adventures and conquests. Please.”

The old hero sighed. He was not prone to resurrecting the long forgotten civilizations of old. Nor did he enjoy recounting his own history, which had been a tragedy in itself. It was quite a story, though, and the stories of Aulderon would only live so long as they were told.

“Many, many years ago,” he began, “I was deemethed Sir Calebert, Viscount of Trinity and Lord of the South of Aulderon. For indeed, Trinity wasth the largest land in Southern Aulderon. It seemth that I recall five of us. Myself, Lord of the South, Marquis D’Ewartila of Brentell, Gentle Overseer of the East, another Knight, Sir Wartagell of Twarten, Brave Earl of the Frozen North, and yet another knight, Sir Bantaren of Rougen, Tyrannical Baron of the West. It also seemth that I recall a one High King who ruleth us all and all of Aulderon. There wereth many kings. Some wise and just, some it seemth to me a trifle dense. The house of Trinity hath always been beside the king and so I was.

It seemth I was great friends with one of the last Aulderon kings, a fine young man who hadth cometh out of some university in the capital city of Aulderon, Bowinton. He cameth to the throne of Aulderon at the End of the Peace of Aulderon time period. He hadth a promising start no doubt. He seemedth quite capable and always friendly to us Lords. He fell in love a short while later, it seemth, with a young lady at court from her home in Brentall to the East. She was the Countess Derlesia. They weret soon married. She seemth a good enough Queen, a little, or perhaps more than a little, dense, but she servethed her purpose at functions and it seemeth she really didst loveth his majesty. In time she blessed him with a daughter.

She was a beautiful Princess that looked like a sunrise with golden blonde hair made, it seemth, of the finest gold and with eyes as crystal blue as the sky on a cloudless day. She grew with grace and beauty and was keener than both her parents put together at a young age. She spent many a summer in Trinity and I did love her with all my heart.

Peenon_02

“That doesn’t make sense, Grandfather,” the boy interrupted. “How could you love her if she was so much younger than you?”

The old man sighed again. “Tis a sad tale you wish to hear, me lad,” he said.

In short, when I was a youth, just recently acquired my knighthood, I went exploring in the forests of the North and happened apoun an old Hag stuck in a tree. I was quiet full of myself, and thinking myself the greatest knight, I rescued her.

Peenon_03

“A reward ye be gettin’ for this,” the hag said. “I shall grant ye one wish. But take heed. If thou shouldst proclaim thy wish with ill intent or self gain, it shall not be as thou shouldst expect it.”

I did not heed the Old Hag’s warning, however. I said, “For the deed and service I hath given to thee, I ask in return that none mine enemies shouldst ever strike me down.”

“So be it,” the Hag replied. Then she vanished. So it was. I have never been killed and never will die for my wish was made with a puffed opinion of my own self worth.

Peenon_04

It was in the time of the king’s daughter, Arleanna, that I had maintained my youthful appearance for so long. I loved Arleanna and would have given up my lands and titles for her. It appeared that she wouldth have the throne after her father for his wife never had a son or other children.

Unbeknowst to myself or anyone else at the time, however, Queen Derlesia was not as suitable as she seemed. She had for years, in fact, been in love with Sir Bantaren, Lord of the West. She knew that she was trapped in her marriage with his majesty, however, and the sly Baron of the West knew of her love and used it to his advantage. She wouldth performth anything for him and so it was that when he asked for fair Princess Arleanna’s hand in marriage she would not refuse. Queen Derlesia pleaded the case to his majesty who granted it without thought. So it was the engagement between Princess Arleanna, heir of Aulderon, and Sir Bantaren, Baron of the West, was made.

Peenon_05

Princess Arelanna was not at all happy about this and managed to escape from the palace and ran to Trinity, entreating me to help her. I knew it was treason. I knew, if caught, my lands and titles would be taken away. But my heart could not refuse Arleanna, for indeed her predicament was perplexing. For a time I hid in my castle, but someone with such unearthly beauty as Arleanna’s is not easily forgotten.

One day a traveler from the East came to my door begging a place to stay for the night. I did not refuse him. He claimed he was going home from a visit to the West. When I inquired upon his occupation he replied that he was a mapmaker and was trying to more accurately map the lands surrounding Aulderon. I gave him a room for the night. Little did I know that the traveler was not a mapmaker, but a spy sent from Sir Bartaren. He had grown furious at the disappearance of Arleanna, and knew where she was likely to be found.

“Now wait a minute,” the boy interrupted again. “If this Baron of the West was so mean, how is it that the king let his daughter become engaged to such a man?”

“Ah, the king,” the old knight sighed. “He had been a good strong King, but as the years progressed he grew feeble and the real ruler of Aulderon was Queen Derlesia.”

The spy of Bartaren crept about the palace that night. He came apoun a small library where Arleanna had a habit of staying up reading. Having seen her he knew the situation and quickly rode off in the middle of the night. We had not known who he was and having not been aware of his discovery, we did not worry.

*******************************************************************************************************

We’ll return to Aulderon: Penons in the Dust right after this.

Hey Tricia! I like the things you do! Hey Tricia! If I could I would be you. You’re the one and only Tricia, the one and only Trish, You know how to make a breakfast, they’re great! Frosted Tricias, they’re more than good, they’re great!

Now back to Aulderon: Penons in the Dust

*******************************************************************************************************

When Bantaren’s spy returned to him, he rallied his troops preparing to march on Trinity. I got wind of this and organized my knights. Queen Derlesia was informed of the situation and demanded that I return Princess Arleanna. When I refused, she added her forces of Bowinton to Bantaren’s. She commanded Marquis D’Ewartila and Sir Wartagell to add their military forces to crush me, but Sir Wartagell refused. He had also been a close friend of Arleanna and I, and he was on our side. Marquis D’Ewartila was quite undecided. As I said, he was the Gentle Overseer of the East and sympathized with me, but war and strife were not to his liking. He refused to lend his small militia to Queen Derlesia’s cause, but didst not lend them to me either. He did however, not delay Wartegell’s knights as they traveled to join my army.

We met Bantaren’s army on a plain lying between South and West. Little did I know as the gory battle waged, a spy disguised as one of Wartegell’s knights rode through our ranks and on to Trinity. The gate was opened for him, of course, and being admitted, he kidnapped Princess Arleanna, and under the cover of night he brought her to Bantaren at his camp.

Now Bantaren had his long sought bride, but before marrying her he decided he must thwart me, his archenemy. So it was we awoke to find his army had retreated to Rougen with the Princess. A lone messanger was left. He fearfully informed us of what had happened and offered me Arleanna’s favorite necklace as proof that she was really his. I formed up my men and marched them on Rougen.

Being older than dirt can be helpful, for I knew of a secret passage leading to the cellar of Bantaren’s castle. While the battle waged, I found it and traveled to the cellar. Surprisingly, in the room adjacent to the one I emerged in, I heard talking and one of the voices sounded like my beloved. I peered through a crack in the door.

Arleanna was in there alright, as well as Bantaren. Arleanna was chained to a wall. Bantaren was pacing, talking to her in a distracted sort of way while she wearily struggled to get free. “Your beloved Sir Calebert should arrive soon,” he was saying. “Then we shall see. I have long wondered who had more knightly skill. Calebert has had more experience, but I believe I have more given talent.”

“So I’m to be a prize in a sword contest then?” Arleanna cried angrily.

“No, of course not,” Bantaren assured her. “You will not really be a prize. You are already mine. I will simply by protecting you from the madman.”

“You are the one who is mad,” she argued. “You’ve kidnapped me, and I suppose you’re going to force me to marry you?”

“No, not really,” he replied. “You don’t have to marry me if you don’t want to. You’re mine all the same, however.”

She shrieked. “Your even more despicable then I thought,” she cried.

“I never pretended to be otherwise,” he said. “Your beloved is late,” he mused. “I was almost positive he’d have been here by now.”

“Why do you keep saying ‘Your Beloved’?” she asked.

“Grandfather!” the boy interrupted again, “you said you and Arleanna loved each other.”

“I did not,” he argued. “I said that I loved her. She never expressed such love for me. It had been my hope that some day we should marry and she would grow to love me in time, however.

Peenon_06

Anyway, Bantaren then said, “You are ignorant, Princess. Haven’t you noticed? Sir Calebert, a distinguished bachelor, would hardly go to so much trouble if he did not have some inner feelings for you.”

“We are the best of friends,” she replied indignantly. “That is all I will ever ask of him, and that is all he can honorably ask from me. You wouldn’t understand, of course.”

“Oh, of course,” he agreed, “but all the same, it is my belief that the Dear Duke of Trinity has some emotions locked away somewhere for you, my fluffy-brained Princess.”

“Why did you want my hand in marriage then?” she asked.

“I don’t love you,” Bantraen said. “Don’t flatter yourself, dear. Your beauty is beyond compare, but some people want more than a pretty face. What I do want is power. You are the Key to Aulderon. Whoever you marry becomes King, or hadn’t you realized that? I want Aulderon. I’m willing to do whatever it takes to get it. Even killing your beloved.”

Peenon_07

“That’s a stupid plan,” Arleanna said. “Even if you did kill Calebert, you’d still have to deal with Wartegell and D’Ewartila.”

“Yes,” he agreed, “but Sir Calebert, the Immortal Champion, who has triumphed over death itself, or so the legend goes, is fabled to be invincible. When I kill him, the others will surely be afraid.”

“What makes you so sure you’ll triumph?”

“I have his weakness right here.” He laid a hand on her neck and kissed her. I came slamming through the door at that point. “You see, Princess?” Bantaren said amusedly. “Thou art his weakness. Thou art his failure.”

Peenon_08 (1)

“Is this true?” Arleanna asked me, her eyes pleading for the answer to be no.

I sighed. “I wouldst not lie to thee, Princess,” I said.

She sighed. “It is so then,” she said. “I am the cause of war and battle. It is me.”

But I didn’t hear her. Bantaren and I had already rushed at each other, swords aloft. Little did I know, Arleanna had stolen the key from Bantaren, when he had kissed her and even whilst we tried to tear each other to pieces she was freeing herself. When she was free she reached into her cloak and pulled out a dagger. “Lo, good sirs,” she called, “the cause for your strife has ended.” She plunged the dagger into her heart and fell tragically to the floor.

Peenon_09

“NO!” Bantaren and I cried, rushing to her side, he for politics, and I for reasons of the heart. Yet she was dead. Newly enraged by this sad turn of events, Bantaren and I leapt at each other. We fought for a while but finally I struck him a fatal blow. He fell dead to the floor, and I was left alone in the cellar to weep.

*~*~*The End*~*~*

Peenon_10

Special thanks to James for all his great drawing work!!! And Middle School Patricia for being so incredibly ridic that it still brings me joy 16 years later.

Previously: More journals; More James Fox

Selfie Scavenger Hunt: Art Museum

At a recent THE 434 reunion, we did a selfie scavenger hunt at the NC Museum of Art!! Everyone did a really good job, especially Cynthia who was hindered by not actually having a smartphone to take selfies with. She had to awkwardly turn her point-and-shoot around, which makes it way harder. Here are my entries:

Something purple!

Something purple!

Something you want to steal!

Something you want to steal!

A museum employee!

A museum employee!

Something shiny!

Something shiny!

An animal!

An animal!


Read the rest of this entry »

So Steven can make croissants now

Steven got this Craftsy course on croissant making on Black Friday. Making croissants is finicky and takes a long time, so of course Steven loves it.

Croissants take a lot of butter, yo

Croissants take a lot of butter, yo

Usually, Steven has trouble making doughs and I end up swooping in to save the day, but not this time:

The outfit must have helped

The outfit must have helped

The process involves a lot of folding your sheet of butter into your dough:

Yeah, that top square is all butter

Yeah, that top square is all butter

Of course you have to measure to get everything precise

Of course you have to measure to get everything precise

Rolling pin action!

Rolling pin action!

Finally, after much toil, they started to look like croissants:

Laaaaaaaadies

Laaaaaaaadies

Unfortunately, he had to leave them proofing to go to orchestra practice:

Hella professional proofing set up

Hella professional proofing set up

So it was left to me to actually get them in the oven:

Steven trusts me too much

Steven trusts me too much

Luckily, my part wasn’t that hard, and they turned out beautifully:

Perfection

Perfection

The insides are just the right flaky consistency:

We each did our part

We each did our part

Next time: Pain au Chocolat/I die of joy

All Star Thanksgiving 2014

Despite my being three different kinds of sick this week, Steven and I still managed to have a delicious Thanksgiving! This is almost entirely due to Steven’s skillz.

As usual, we bypassed the usual subpar Thanksgiving fare and each chose 2 favorite foods to cook. This year’s lineup:

Me: Biryani and peach smoothies
Steven: Spinach pomegranate salad and cherry pie

Success!!!

Success!!!

I’ve chosen biryani before, but I can’t help it–it’s one of my favorite things Steven makes. And it’s so warm and filling once it gets cold outside! See his recipe after the cut.

The spinach pomegranate salad also had pear, pecan, and feta. A really easy (and Christmas colored!) salad that tastes delicious. I modified it from the one found here.

I’d never made a cherry pie before, and Steven had never had one made with fresh cherries instead of that questionable filling from a can. But I’m not going to dump can filling into my beautiful crust, so I had to try it! We used this recipe for the filling, and both agreed that it was pretty good, but needed something to combat the intense cherriness. Cinnamon? Vanilla ice cream? Steven will have to perform experiments to find out. My easy-awesome crust tutorial can be found here. Steven helped roll it out! Like a pro, of course.

Smoothies don’t need recipes, they are delicious no matter what!!!! This one had frozen peaches, frozen mangoes, peach nectar, vanilla yogurt, honey, and almond meal.

Read the rest of this entry »

Pie Crust Tutorial: Life is too short to eat mediocre pie

The world would be a better place if we made more pie. If you don’t believe me, it’s possible that you’ve never actually had pie, not good pie. More than once I’ve served someone pie only to have them exclaim in surprise “This is good! Usually I don’t like pie, especially the crust. I just scrape the filling out and eat that by itself.” This, my sadly deprived friend, is because you’ve probably never had pie crust. You’ve had those terrible cardboard shells you can buy in the grocery store freezer. Maybe you’ve had the frozen plastic crust people can buy to “roll out themselves” as if that magically makes it homemade.

Don’t mistake me, I’m not Steven. I don’t want to grind my own flour or churn my own butter. I’m perfectly happy to buy things at the store instead of making them from scratch. Some things anyway. But pie crust should never be one of those things. It’s just not worth it. Really. I’ll prove it with a graph.

A PIE graph? Sorry

A PIE graph? Sorry

I find with cooking in general that enjoyment and work tend to have a direct relationship. Things you put some work into generally taste better than things you bought at, say, a drive-thru. But there is a point where this relationship peaks and suddenly the more work something is the less you enjoy it. Maybe you’re just too tired after all that cooking, or no cookie is really worth hours and hours of your time, no matter how tasty. That apex where enjoyment is maxed out is probably at different places for different people, so obviously I’m not suggesting everyone make a pie every week. But I am saying that if you’re using a frozen crust, the chances are you’re already doing the same amount of work as me, with way, way less enjoyment. Here are your pie options:

Buy a Pie: As you can see on the graph, buying a pie is no work for you! Yay! Unfortunately, store or restaurant bought pies can really vary. Just because you’re paying someone else money to make it doesn’t mean they’re any better than you re: using terrible frozen crust.

Buy a pie shell: To the pie novice, these seem so convenient. A lot of them come already in a crappy disposable pie tin! You just dump your filling in, and bake! Are you even making your filling yourself? If not, you basically just heated up canned bullshit and cardboard all for the sake of pretending to cook. Stop. Stop this right now. Either buy a pie, or learn how to actually cook, you monster.

Sorry, I get a little emotional about this. I’ve suffered too much at the hands of people who’ve offered me “homemade pie” only to be met with this travesty against tastebuds.

Of course, maybe you make your own filling because you are a proud baker! Good for you! But half your pie is still frozen cardboard. I think the problem is that a lot of people see the pie crust as just a vessel to serve the delicious filling. No! Pie crust is at least half of the pie experience, and should be given the same consideration. I don’t understand people who go to all the work of making a nice filling and then put it in something that is basically a soggy bowl. If that’s what you want, just make a crumble, god.

Buy frozen pie crust: These are more work than the pie shell and usually a little bit better quality. They’re sheets of pastry dough that you can roll out yourself to give you the illusion that it’s not cardboard and you’re totally rocking this cooking thing!

Except it still totally tastes like it. What are you doing with your life?

Make a pie crust: You can’t really say you “made” a pie unless you made the crust. It’s not just wrapping paper–it’s half the dessert. The reason people don’t is because they think it’s too much work. They put it more where I put “French Macaroons” on my Pie Graph–waaaaay too time consuming and finicky to ever be worth the effort. And if you’re a pie purist, that’s probably true. “Real” pie crusts involve cutting cold butter into flour until it’s a crumbly texture, which is pretty annoying because you’ve gotta make sure everything is just the right temperature and rolling it out can be tricky. Ugh, who has time for that?

You might be surprised to hear: definitely not me. Fear not, pie crust challenged! Today I will share with you the secrets of my success! My pie crust recipe may not be the fanciest or best, but it MAXIMIZES the work/enjoyment relationship. I’ve done the butter crust as a comparison, and can report back that the extra work doesn’t really make significant gains as far as enjoyment goes.

Plus, my recipe is so easy I once taught James Fox to do it over the phone. If you’ve ever played with Playdoh, I think you got this. It’ll probably take less than an hour, including preparing the filling. Let me show you how: Read the rest of this entry »

Pi Day 2014!!

Happy Pi Day!! As you might recall, Pi Day is the most important holiday in the Ladd family, and it’s always hard for me to be away from home. But my Mom usually mails me a gift of a new calculator or some fancy graph paper or what have you, and, of course, I always make some kind of pie to keep the tradition alive. And to avoid a year of careless math errors, because that is one superstition I am afraid NOT to follow. I do way too much math (sewing, cooking, stats at work) to risk becoming bad at it for a whole year!

This year’s celebration will be a little more subdued (although of course Steven and I will break out the word problems later tonight) because I can’t really eat pie right now. I decided to make one for Steven to take to work, and since normal pie can be messy to pass out, I lifted my ban and agreed to make mini pies in my muffin pan. Don’t worry!! I had a few bites of one before he left to avoid math ruin.

Hand delivered in bed, because Pi Day is classy like that

Hand delivered in bed, because Pi Day is classy like that

These mini pies went a lot better than last time. My previous experience informed the crust cutting-out step, and there wasn’t an awkward lattice top crust to worry about. Plus, the filling was actually delicious because I used a legit recipe. Still more work than a normal pie, but I might be convinced to do it again sometime.

The perfect portion!

The perfect portion!

The filling is pear ginger, and you brown the butter with ginger and vanilla bean for a smooth, well-balanced flavor. Pear on its own would be too bland, but adding just enough ginger makes it pop. I was really pleased with how these turned out!

Happy Pi Day!!

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