Thursday, March 15, 2012

Pi Day Menu 2012!

 March 14th aka... 3.14
such a FUN day at our house!
3.141592653589

I love having a hubby that also adds FUN to our lives 
with fun events and that being the celebrating of Pi Day!  
Since I'm not currently working I kind of am out of touch with the days of the month and yesterday when I got an email from Tracy that it was Pi Day and we should have PIE for dinner, I quickly got a menu together from what I had on hand.

First, I made a batch of pie crust and let it chill....
I then pulled a Rotisserie chicken carcass from the freezer and boiled it to make broth for Homemade Chicken Pot Pie... 
(making the soup for pot pie is a cinch, is quick and just uses basic ingredients that all of us have on hand)
I realized that I didn't have lemons to make our favorite Lemon Meringue Pie, however, I did have limes and so I made a LIME Meringue Pie instead! 
We enjoyed it every bit as much as we enjoy Lemon Meringue Pie!

My favorite part is when we are eating dinner....
I love how Tracy describes things to the kids...
(he is the BEST teacher!)
he taught them about the mathematical constant denoted by the Greek letter Pi and shared an easy way to remember it out to 12 decimals 
(kind of like memorizing a phone number).
3.141592653589 
We made up a song to memorize it and all night and all this morning my Ethan Kip keeps singing it! I don't think I'll ever be able to get it out of my head!  
So, now if I ever have to calculate the Earth's circumference, 
I'll be accurate to within 1/1000th of an inch! 

Anywho, here are the Pie Recipes we made up...
SO easy, SO yummy 
and you don't need fancy ingredients to make them up!  
Just a few simple ingredients and you can WOW your family 
with a dinner that is something you would get at a restaurant!

BTW...one pie crust recipe was enough dough to make the pot pie AND Meringue Pie
Pie Crust
½ cup REAL butter
2/3 cup shortening
1 Tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon baking powder
1-teaspoon salt
1 Tablespoon dry milk powder
3 cups flour
½ cup cold water

Mix butter and shortening together.
Add half the flour and all of the dry ingredients.
Mix.
Add the rest of flour and water. (Makes 2 double crusts)

Roll out very thin with plenty of flour.
Carefully put in pie plates and prick with fork all over.
Bake 400 degrees for 8 minutes, or until lightly browned.

**************
The Key to a flaky pie crust
is to NOT try to make the dough look perfect and don't overwork it or it will make it stiff.

(Also, you can use ALL butter instead of butter and shortening---
if you choose this option it is 
20 Tbsp. of butter or 2-1/2 sticks)

Chicken Pot Pie 
Cooked chicken (however much you have)
1 large onion finely chopped
3 carrots chopped
2 celery stalks chopped
Add in small amount of broth or water and boil for 15-20 minutes until veggies are tender 
(set aside 1 cup frozen peas)

(sauce)
2 Tbsp. butter
1/2 cup flour
2 cups chicken broth
2/3 cups milk
1/4 tsp. seasoned salt

Melt butter in sauce pan and then add in flour and mix until combined.
Add in broth, milk and seasoned salt and whisk until thickened.
Pour broth mixture into pan with veggies.
Add in 1 cup frozen peas, stir well and put in pie crust pan
Put top pie crust on pie, pinch edges and
bake at 425 for 30-35 minutes until golden brown.
Let stand 10-15 minutes before cutting.
 
Perfect way to use the carcass from rotisserie chicken...put bones in pot and fill half full with water...boil and let simmer 30 minutes...strain off broth and use it to make this yummy dish.

Lime Meringue Pie
(1) 9 inch baked pie shell
1 ½ cups sugar
1/3 cup flour
1/3 cup cornstarch
½ teaspoon salt
2 cups boiling water
3 egg yolks
1/3 cup lime juice (I used 4 limes to get this much juice)
1 Tablespoon grated lime rind
3 egg whites (for meringue)

Combine dry ingredients in heavy saucepan.
Add water slowly, stirring until smooth.
Cook over medium heat until mixture thickens and boils, stirring constantly.
Stir small amounts of hot mixture into egg yolk, lime juice and lime rind.
Quickly stir into hot mixture.
Reduce heat to low and cook slowly, stirring for 2 minutes.
Remove from heat.
Pour into baked pie shell.
Top with meringue and bake at 400 degrees for 8-10 minutes.

(Meringue)
3 egg whites
¼ teaspoon cream of tarter
6 Tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
Beat egg whites with cream of tarter until frothy.
Gradually beat in sugar a little at a time. Add vanilla.
Continue beating until stiff and glossy.
Pile meringue onto pie being careful to “seal” meringue onto edge of crust to prevent shrinking. (Filling exposed to heat will “weep”).
Swirl or point top for design.
Bake for 8-10 minutes until delicately browned. 
Cool slowly away from draft.

Enjoy a little family fun tonight...
(even though it's not officially "Pi Day")
eating pie, 
learning a new math fact and 
having a BALL just being together and enjoying each others company around the dinner table!

9 comments:

Julie said...

You are one pretty amazing cook to just whip up a fabulous "pi" dinner with what you had on hand. I've never made chicken pot pie and last time I made a meringue pie it was a complete fail. Yours looked like one DELICIOUS dinner.

Garden of Egan said...

Amazing that you could just quickly whip that up.
You should post a picture of Ethan signing the pi song.

Thanks for sharing. I am going to try my hand at pie crusts again.. I will make a nice one one of these days.

Connie said...

Why would your family EVER want to go out to dinner? Your food is absolutely delicious! You're awesome!

Heather said...

That is awesome that you can whip up pies like that! I will have copy your crust recipe and attempt to make a pie! LOL!

JennyLynn said...

you are amazing! "Pi" for dinner, such a great idea.
I have wanted to make a chicken pot pie. Will have to give your recipe a try.

Pedaling said...

I have made chicken pot pie before, but yours looks better. I must try it. My husband will be in heaven!

dry milk mix in the crust--that must be the secret ingredient.

mmm Lemon Meringue -- I am impressed!

I to am looking forward to getting to know you better. It was fun to be introduced to you and so many other wonderful ladies at dinner next week.

I love your blog!

Nicole said...

Ohhh, I wish it were Pi day again. I missed it!! Thanks for all the inspiring ideas. I'm saving them for next year's Pi day!
So fun to meet all of you bloggers last weekend! I'm just feeling those creative juices flowin'!!!!!

lesa @ music notes said...

I missed Pi day until it was too late. Your pies look delicious!

" Hit It......." said...

Kimmie, I am so impressed! I struggle so much with cooking. I lack the confidence in it. How did you learn. You are talented!

I think you are right about the pie crust thing; I always over work mine and it has turned out horrible.

I hope you don't mind if I stop by. You will probably be able to teach me a lot. Thanks!