Kay Wheeler Moore

Welcome to my blog

Hello. . .

The Newfangled Country Gardener is for anyone who has a garden, would like to have a garden, or who simply enjoys eating the garden-fresh way. I don't claim to be an expert; in this blog I'm simply sharing some of the experiences my husband and I have in preparing food that is home-grown.

About the author

Kay Wheeler Moore is the author of a new cookbook, Way Back in the Country Garden, that features six generations of recipes that call for ingredients that are fresh from the garden. With home gardening surging in popularity as frugal people become more resourceful, this recipe collection and the stories that accompany it ideally will inspire others to cook the garden-fresh way and to preserve their own family food stories as well. The stories in this book center around the Three Red-Haired Miller Girls (Kay's mother and aunts) who grew up in Delta County, TX, with their own backyard garden so lavish that they felt as though they were royalty after their Mama wielded her kitchen magic on all that was homegrown. Introduced in Kay's previous book, Way Back in the Country, the lively Miller Girls again draw readers into their growing-up world, in which a stringent economic era--not unlike today's tight times--saw people turn to the earth to put food on the table for their loved ones. The rollicking yarns (all with recipes attached) have love, family, and faith as common denominators and show how food evocatively bonds us to our life experiences.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

The end of the pears, but boy, did this Pear Streusel Pie serve as a grand finale!

Like most everything else in our garden (except the stalwart okra plants—bloomin’ their crazy heads off in this punishing heat), our pears have had their last gasp. But boy, did they go out with a flourish! Pear Streusel Pie was the final resting place for the last batch, with just a few left over for maybe one more mini-dish of something. Pear Streusel Pie was possibly our favorite thing to make from our garden the entire summer. We just adored it.

The recipe couldn’t be simpler—that is, after you get all the pears peeled and thinly sliced. The recipe hailed from an old, old standby—my Flavor Favorites! cookbook (circa 1979) from Baylor alumni. When I mentioned this fact to Hubby, he replied, “Well! I haven’t heard that one cited in a long time.” It’s true; I can get in a rut where recipe sources are concerned. My Flavor Favorites! once was like a cooking bible for me. Rarely did I once look anywhere else. So after I found the Pear Streusel Pie recipe, this prompted me to prowl through it again and remember how much I loved some of those old favorites—many of which can be modified with today’s healthier-eating options.

Anyway, the pie was garden-variety fruit-pie assemblage—sugar (substitute), lemon juice, and melted butter tossed with the pear slices and then poured into an unbaked pie shell. Topping consisted of flour, cinnamon, butter, and sugar (substitute), blended until at the coarse-crumb stage and then set atop the pie.

We had a feast when that pie emerged from the oven. We patted ourselves on the back with each bite. Our own pears—thank you, garden; thank You, God. We’ll look forward to some good times next season.

Pear Streusel Pie

1/2 cup sugar (or sugar substitute)
1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 cup melted butter or margarine
5 large pears, peeled and thinly sliced
1 unbaked (9-inch) pie shell
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/2 cup sugar (or sugar substitute)
1/4 cup butter, softened

Combine 1/2 cup sugar, juice, and butter; toss with pears. Place in pie crust. To make topping combine flour, cinnamon, and remaining 1/2 cup sugar. Add butter and blend until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Sprinkle topping over pears. Bake at 375 degrees for 40 to 60 minutes. Makes 6 to 8 servings.

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