Littleman offered me another helpful recipe, this evening:
- First, you take some bread that has been baked in the oven.
- You roll it out, then add some muffin batter and some grapes.
- Put it in the oven to bake, and
- ta da! You have grape pie!
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Now, I have never heard of grape pie before tonight. But as I was writing this post, I decided to google it and see what I came up with. Lo and behold, there IS such a thing as grape pie! It is apparently a specialty of bakers in tiny Naples, NY. Here is one such recipe, courtesy of an article from the NY Folklore Society (http://www.nyfolklore.org/pubs/voic28-3-4/grape.html):
Even though they may be perfectly willing to share their recipes, the bakers of Naples have trouble letting outsiders in on the secret of the perfect pie because they never bake just one: they prepare pies in quantity. After much consideration, Irene Bouchard worked out the following for me:
5 1/2 cups Concord grapes, washed
about 1 cup sugar, depending on the sweetness of the grapes
1 tablespoon tapioca
Pastry for a 9-inch pie
Pop the skins off the grapes by pinching them at the end opposite the stem; set them aside. Put the pulp (without water) into a heavy pan, bring it to a boil, and let it boil 5 to 6 minutes. Put it through a colander or food mill to remove the seeds. Pour the hot pulp over the skins and let the mixture sit for 5 hours. ("This colors the pulp and makes it pretty.") Add the sugar and tapioca, then pour the mixture into the pie crust and dot with butter. Put on the top crust. (Irene uses a "floating" top crust—a circle of dough slightly smaller than the top of the pie—because it is easier than crimping top and bottom together and it also makes a pretty purple ring around the edge.) Bake at 400 degrees for 15 minutes. Lower the temperature to 350 degrees and cook 20 minutes more until the crust is browned and the juice begins to bubble up.
* * *
Thumbs-up tonight for grape pie! I am SO going to have to try it out. (The Naples NY kind, not Littleman's!) I wonder if our local muscadines or scuppernogs would work? Yum, yum!
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