For the Love of Pie

IMG_0515

I am in love.  I am in love with a book…all about pie.  From as far back as I can remember, pies have donned the table of every family gathering.  Whether it was Thanksgiving or Christmas, Easter or Mother’s Day, or even The Fourth of July, pie seemed to take the lead as the star of the dessert show.

My husband has long known of my self-admitted pie obsession, and gave me a fabulous birthday present this year:  A Year of Pies: A Seasonal Tour of Home Baked Pies by one of my fav do-it-yourselfers Ashley English.  After just one flip of the page I knew I was in love.  Oh my.  Each pie looks better than the last, and my girls and I found ourselves nestled on our couch, thumbing through the crisp pages, vowing to make each and every pie in the book by the end of 2013.

IMG_0517

Inspired by the contents of this book, we decided to host an afternoon of pie tasting.  Yes, you heard that correctly.  We spent Monday afternoon, crowded in our warm kitchen with family and friends, eating nothing but pie and drinking mead and coffee.  (I mean, you can’t very well eat a honey pie without honey mead to go with it now can you?)  I think it was the tastiest afternoon I have enjoyed in some time.  Yum.

IMG_0516

Happy Honeymooning

This past weekend, our family attended the wedding of a dear friend.  It is on these special occasions that I am reminded of just how lucky we are to be surrounded by such amazing family and friends.  It makes for such a full, rich life of which we are truly blessed.

To honor this very exceptional couple, we decided to create a “Honeymoon Basket” for them to enjoy.  My contribution to the basket was a hand-made quilt.  I love giving handcrafted gifts because there is so much thought that goes into the making of these items.  With each clip of the scissors and each stitch of the fabric, I thought of this fabulous couple and the amazing life they were about to begin.

Now, my hubby’s contribution to the basket was much more exciting.  His recent fervor for fermentation has led him to the history behind the fermented beverage of mead, and its connection to the honeymoon.  So, he brewed a special batch of mead for the newlyweds, complete with an explanation of its relation to the honeymoon.

“Predating all other forms of concentrated sugars, honey, diluted to honey water, was in all probability one of the first fermented beverages ever concocted by man.  With its fermentation came the alcoholic drink we know as mead.

Mead is the beverage of love.  The drinking of mead has been held responsible for fertility and the birth of sons.  This is where the tradition of the honeymoon got its start.  If mead were consumed for one month (one moon) after a wedding, then in nine months a son would be born and the mead maker congratulated.  The custom of drinking mead at weddings and for one month after initiated our present-day custom of the honeymoon.”  ~Papazian, Charlie.  Joy of Home Brewing

Fermentation Frenzy

Ever since my husband received The Art of Fermentation for his birthday, it has been a fermentation frenzy in our house.  Today I present to you a bit of a photo journey through our fermentation experimentation…

…a little beer…

…and mead (a.k.a honey wine)…

…and sauerkraut.