Mother’s Buttermilk Raisin Pie*
¼ C cornstarch 2 T lemon juice
1 C sugar 1 T butter
¼ tsp salt 1 baked 8 inch pie shell
2 C buttermilk ¼ C sugar
¼ C raisins
2 eggs, separated when cold, and bring to room temperature
Blend cornstarch, 1 cup sugar and salt on top of double boiler. Add buttermilk and raisins and cook over direct heat, stirring constantly until mixture boils and thickens. Beat egg yolks until thick; stir in a little of the hot mixture (this is called tempering the eggs) and then pour back into the top of the double boiler.
Place over boiling water and cook two minutes longer, continuing to stir. Remove from heat and gradually beat in the lemon juice, stirring between each addition. Pour into cooled pie shell.
TIP: Beating Egg Whites:
- Have a clean copper or stainless steel bowl and beaters.
- Separate eggs when cold and then warm egg whites to room temperature before using. Make sure there is no egg yolk in the egg whites.
- Have cream of tartar and sugar ready (if using a stainless steel bowl)
Beat egg whites until stiff while gradually adding in ¼ C sugar. Continue beating until meringue is thick and smooth. Pile lightly and quickly over the surface of the pie making sure it touches crust all the way around. Bake in a moderate oven (350º F) for 12 – 15 minutes, or until the meringue is nicely browned. Cool on a cake rack before cutting. 5 or 6 servings.
*Green Pie - The Rest of the Story: We put a lot of trust in those who cook our food, especially mothers. Mom made the pie for my dad because it was one of his favorites. She didn't always have the latest in modern cooking utensils, so she "made do". She didn't always have buttermilk on hand, so she would add a Tablespoon of white vinegar to the milk she did have and let it "clabber" for a few minutes. Truthfully, I always thought this pie was supposed to be green. Many years later Mom told me the reason the pie turned green was because she was using an aluminum pan and the acids in the vinegar, raisins, etc. reacted with it and the result was green pie! It tasted fine, but no way would it have passed inspection in anything but a home kitchen.
Are there any stories you have about recipes going awry?