Tag Archives: Haedrich

News and Reviews: Pie Successes and Failures, Hello Fresh, Chef’s Table, and Cookbooks I am Reading

Episode 014-  This show has a lot of news and reviews that you can use!

Program Note:   If you have a favorite MRE, call the listener line and tell me about your favorite! (716) 427-GUYS (4897).

If you served in the military, you’ve enjoyed field rations.  Okay, “enjoyed” is most assuredly not the best word but you have at least eaten them.  The anniversary of my enlistment date into the Marine Corps is coming up so I am preparing a show on MREs, C-Rations, etc.  Please include:

  • Your name
  • Where you’re calling from
  • Branch and years of service
  • Your favorite MRE and why

If you don’t want to call, create a voice memo on your smartphone and email it to gabe@guysandfood.com.  I will include your comments in this future episode.

Update how my food sacrifices have been going during Lent.

This presented some challenges while as my family did a test drive of the Hello Fresh meal delivery service.  You’ll recall, I did a review of Blue Apron in Episode 010 of Guys and Food.

I just started watching Chef’s Table on Netflix and I can heartily recommend it.  I will tell you why.

Because my brother-in-law is German, while at a library sale I picked up The New German Cookbook by Jean Anderson and Hedy Wűrtz. I review that book and tell you about about a newly discovered food  that is now a family favorite.

I finally got to bake the Maple Cream Pie (page 152) from Pies and Tarts by Kristina Peterson Migoya that I’ve been discussing.  In the spirit of full disclosure, I had a problem with my first attempt at the the all butter pie crust, so I will tell you what I did to fix that.

One pie is never enough and since March 14th was Pi Day (3.14 get it?!) I also made a Chocolate Silk Pie with a Graham Cracker Crust (page 502) from Pie by Ken Haedrich. 

I tucked into Art of the Pie by Kate McDermott. You’ll hear my review of that.   Incidentally, this book was nominated for a James Beard Award.

Also nominated for a James Beard Award, is The Sporkful. The show’s host, Dan Pashman was on Episode 005 of the Guys and Food podcast.  Kudos to a really nice guy!

All of the links here are for your use and enjoyment.  None are affiliate links.

Let’s Settle our Political Differences at the Table

“On this Election Day, I offer your attention to something that people of all political persuasions could probably agree on—the healing power of food.”


Certainly, this has been the most contentious election in memory.  Clinton v. Trump will be one for the record books for sure.  Never have I seen such discord in a presidential election; interestingly, I seem to say that every four years.

That doesn’t mean this level of rancor never existed.  Remember, the entire South left the Union after Lincoln was elected.  Our history is full of examples of times when our civil discourse was much less civil during elections. So we should put things in perspective.

On this Election Day, I offer your attention to something that people of all political persuasions could probably agree on—the healing power of food.  First, regardless if it is “right” or not, eating comfort food physiologically makes you feel better.  The chemical reactions produce endorphins (or something like that) and Boom! You feel better.  Food makes you feel better emotionally too.  Bread and butter or grandma’s lasagna take you back to another time and can be the equivalent of a nurturing hug when you really need it.  If you decide you will celebrate (or drown your sorrows) in a pint of Ben and Jerry’s Cherry Garcia,  a box of Entenmanns’s Chocolate Chip Iced Cake, or a rib eye steak the size of your head, I am not going to judge.  I firmly and unabashedly approve of the message that there is a palliative effect to eating.  Go for it.

After the hangover of celebration (or mourning), we have to decide as a country what to do next.  We simply can’t all move to Canada, nor can we take up arms in insurrection.  That’s not what we do.  Everyone who voted loves their country and wants to us to be better tomorrow than we are today.  We simply have different views on how to get there.  In the coming days, weeks, months, and years, we have to figure out how we are going to do that.  Every other time, we have managed, somehow, to come together.  We have to do that again.  There is no alternative.

A Modest Proposal

In a recent interview for the soon-to-be-released Guys and Food podcast, I spoke with Ken Haedrich.  He is a cookbook author and an authority on pie.  He described pie as more than a combination of ingredients encased in a crust.  It’s a food that brings people together.

“You set a pie out on the table with a diverse crowd group of people and all of the other differences sort of melt away.  It doesn’t matter what your political persuasion is or your religion, or anything like that.  All of sudden it’s ‘pie’ and everybody loves one another.”

So if you and your brother-in-law disagreed on who the next president should be or you were unfriended on Facebook by someone who thought your candidate was not the best fit, take a breath and invite them over for some pie.  The mere act of sharing that dessert can start healing your relationships and by extension, our country.

If pie is not your thing (I will judge you on this character flaw) and you want to bake something that is delicious and historically appropriate, I offer this recipe for Election Cake.Election Cake

Election Cake has a long history in our country, having been served traditionally on, you guessed it, Election Day and other large gatherings.  It is very similar to panettone in that it’s a sweet yeast bread stuffed with dried fruit.  In this recipe, I used equal parts golden raisins, dried blueberries, dried cranberries, and citron.  It’s also fortified with brandy and Madeira wine with more than a huge whiff of nutmeg.  It is very tasty when toasted with a slather of unsalted butter.  Give it a whirl!  The recipe I used was from Greg Patent’s Baking in America.  Here is a feature that was heard on NPR about that cookbook that includes the recipe for Election Cake.  Note that, with three different risings of about two hours each(not including baking time) this takes a good part of the day to bake.

Note:  While you’re sharing it with someone who didn’t vote for your candidate, try not to discuss political emails or the size of a particular candidate’s hands.