Oh, hell no!
I don’t know who came up with this overused adage, but it’s simply not true, unless you’re a grandma who survived the depression with only cabbage soup and potato skins. Then I guess yes, Pie is easy in comparison.
Baking however, is far more of a skill than cooking.
An extra teaspoon of baking powder can be the be-all and end-all of your perfect pastry.
An extra teaspoon of baking powder in your scrambled eggs will go a long way to adding fluffiness, but there’s no catastrophe should you have forgotten it.
Cooking is like matchmaking; bringing complementary elements together and watching them, well, complement each other. A little bit of fire under their stubborn arses also helps.
Baking is like IVF; every element – the ingredients, the temperature, the altitude – has to be just right in order for the project to be successful.
See what I mean?
Despite this, I will bake. I will bake this tonight:
Apple Blueberry Pie
Shortcrust Pastry without liquid: (Thanks Kook en Geniet)
250 ml (1 c) cake flour
15 ml (1 T) castor sugar (I used icing sugar)
125 g (1/2 c) butter or margarine
Combine cake flour, salt and sugar.
Grate and rub in the butter or margarine until crumbly, or use a food processor using the pulse action. Since I don’t have a food processor, I did it by hand, which was lots of fun!
Tip (from me): If you make this beofre the time, keep it in the fridge so that the butter doesn’t melt.
3 medium sized apples
125ml (1/2 c) sugar
1 ml ginger
juice and grated rind of 1/2 lemon
60 ml (4 T) hot water
Handful of pecan nuts
Preheat oven to 180ºC.
Peel, core and slice your apples. If you want to used tinned apples, go ahead. No snobbery here.
Lay half the apples, berries and nuts in your pie dish.
Combine sugar, lemon juice and rind, ginger and sprinkle 1/3 of this over apples.
Arrange remaining apple slices and berries over the top and sprinkle another 1/3 of the sugar mixture.
Sprinkle over shortcrust pastry crumbs and pour over hot water.
Sprinkle remainder of the sugar mixture over the crumbs.
Bake for 40 minutes. Serve with whipped cream.
Don’t get on the scale until you’ve been for a jog.
So alright, this is fairly easy, but definitely not foolproof. I’m the fool and the proof that it can go wrong in so many ways; your butter’s too squishy or the oven’s too hot and the apples stay hard. While it’s still a test, the rewards are definitely worth it.