Friday, January 2, 2009

Non-metaphorical pie

Having used pie as a failed metaphor for economic equality, let me consider for a bit some real, actual, tasty pie. A while back, I tried my hand at making some chicken pot pie. It was horrible, but instructive. My second one was pretty tasty, and they've been good ever since. So, in the pursuit of incremental improvement, I made some small changes. The result was that my last pot pie was fantastic. But now that leaves me in a quandary, because I realize that, without meaning to, I changed just about everything. Instead of chicken, I used turkey, because it's a turkey time of the year. Instead of carrots, celery, and onion, I used carrots, celery, and leeks, because I had some lying around and thought they'd be tasty. The vegetables looked a bit dry when I was cooking them, so I made a cup and a half of b├ęchamel sauce instead of the cup that I usually use. And then there's the crust. Unbeknown to me, my wife did not realize that I'd brought home two distinct bags of flour from the last grocery trip. After noticing that the piecrust cookies I'd made with the leftover crust were most especially chewy, I checked the pantry, and sure enough, there was a bag of all purpose flour there. Which means that the bag of bread flour is what ended up going in the flour canister, and thus into the crust.

So I am now left with the dicision: Do I accept that I've made a clean break to a new recipe, and stick with it? (which means, of course, that pot pie will necessarily become the terminal end of the life cycle of a roasted turkey. And means that if I want a pot pie, I'll have to roast a turkey.) Or do I experiment with ingredients, varying them individually to find out, for example, the partial differential tastiness of pot pie with respect to the leek axis? In doing so, I would almost certainly subject my family to inferior pie. But is that too high a price to pay for the chance to discover the Pot Pie of Maximal Tastiness? Perhaps it is, perhaps not. My dilemma is manifest.

1 comment:

gardenwaltz said...

I'd credit it all to the extra Bechamel sauce.