Everything But the Kitchen Sink Fruit Pie

fruitpie2.jpgThe I’m getting a new refrigerator and have to use up everything in one pie. (Apple, Strawberry, frozen Black Raspberries)

Many of you have heard me complain about my refrigerator.  It’s a small old Kenmore that long ago lost it door compartments.  Bungee cords have been doing a not very good job of holding in the mayo, mustard etc.  For the past year the opening of the refrigerator was inevitably accompanied by an expletive in reaction to something tumbling out.  The door’s final revenge was on Saturday as we awaited the delivery of the new fabulous (to us) French Door Freezer on the bottom Amana.

Mom was eating an omelette and asked for ketchup.  I opened the frig door and the ketchup fell out and skidded on the floor to her.  Hilarity ensued.  We felt the refrigerator knew it was leaving and was bidding us a fond adieu. 

fruitpie.jpgMeanwhile I had to completely empty the old frig in anticipation of the new.  I found some unexpected pie fodder like farmers market apples that were not very good for eating but would be fine in a pie.  A basket of strawberries that was on it’s way out and in the freezer (a whole other story) a half empty bag of Trader Joe’s frozen black raspberries.  I peeled the apples and cut them into biggish chunks, trimmed and halved the strawberries, and added the remaining black raspberries.  It needed a fair amount of sugar, nearly ¾ cup, and about a cup of flour.  I sprinkled on a tiny bit of cinnamon and a little grating of nutmeg.  As soon as I mixed up the fruit the deep red and purple of the berries immediately stained the apples.

It felt so good to go back to the familiar and throw together a fruit pie.  I decided to make a lard-butter crust and use a deep-dish pan because I had a pretty big bowl of fruit.  As usual the pie looked great before I put it in the oven, but I knew the fruit would really diminish in volume once cooked so I wasn’t too disappointed that the top collapsed.  When you’re eating a fruit pie with a lard crust you don’t really care what the pie looks like.


Evan Kleiman is chef owner of Angeli Caffe, co-author of the classic cookbooks Cucina Fresca, Pasta Fresca and Cucina Rustica and host of Good Food, a radio show which airs on KCRW 89.9fm in Southern California. 

Good Food Website