|The last slice of birthday pie!|
Made by my daughter Kate xox
So, it was a great birthday, beginning with a small celebration at work. Toward the end of a crazy-hectic day (we're about to send out almost 8,000 decision letters to applicants to the College), I was asked to stop by an office upstairs to find that my co-worker Wendy brought in a carb-friendlier cheesecake, and the rest of the staff singing "Happy Birthday." They presented me with a card signed by all and it was a touching moment. We do this for each others' birthdays in our office, everyone assigned their own party planner, and this way we all get a little bit of a big deal on our special day. I loved it.
After work, I stopped by to see friends who toasted my birthday with a little bit of the bubbly (!) and after a sip or two left to meet my family at home for a bountiful and healthy dinner Katie put together, the crowning glory a coconut cream birthday pie, and a low-sugar, low-carb one at that! Katie found the recipe at Diabetic Living online, and it was not only beautiful, but absolutely delicious and could take its place nicely among much more decadent desserts. It was a light yet substantial coconut cream crowned in a pillow of sweet meringue, with a confetti of toasted coconut. I can't even tell you how much I loved it, and have already put my order in for another one on my next birthday!
I'd like to share a little story about the day I was born, a memory my father shared with me when I was a little girl. It was Monday, March 15, 1954, and they were living in Dayton. My dad was 37 and my mom 35 at the time. He was headed out the door to work, saying good-bye to my mother, brother Michael, sister Patsy, and baby Steven, a year old just a week before. (Irish Catholic, no explanation necessary, and they went on to have 3 more after me!) I was due to be born a month later, on April 15th. Before he got out of the driveway, my mother called him back. She was in labor. I was born a few hours later, a tiny 5 1/2 lb. baby girl with a ton of black hair and chubby cheeks. Seems I surprised my family that day, and apparently that's been my M.O. ever since!
Anyway, back to Coconut Cream Pie -- that was a nice surprise! And here's the recipe, followed by a photo of my grandboys and me, just about to blow out the candles!
COCONUT CREAM PIE
Baked pastry shell (recipe follows)
3 eggs, room temperature, separated (whites must be out of fridge for 30 minutes, minimum)
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 1/2 cups fat-free milk
1 12-oz. can evaporated fat-free milk
3 tbsp. flaked coconut
1/2 tsp. coconut extract
1/4 tsp. cream of tartar
1/2 tsp. vanilla extract
1/3 cup sugar
2 additional tbsp. flaked coconut
In heavy, medium sauce pan, stir sugar and cornstarch. Stir in milk and evaporated milk. Cook over medium/medium high heat until thick and bubbly. Cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from heat and quickly whisk 1 cup of hot mixture into the three egg yolks. Return egg yolk mixture back to pan; cook and stir 2 minutes more. Remove from heat and keep warm while you make the meringue.
In very clean mixing bowl, beat room temperature whites for 30 seconds until soft peaks form. Add vanilla extract and cream of tartar. Beat until stiff peaks form and meringue is thick and glossy, about 2 minutes more.
Pour hot filling into pie shell. Immediately spread meringue, sealing it to the edge of the pastry. If it doesn't seal, the meringue will shrink and it won't be as pretty. Sprinkle meringue with the last two tablespoons of coconut. Bake at 350 degrees Farenheit for 15 minutes. Cool 1 hour on wire rack. Chill 3-6 hours. 10 servings.
Oven, 450 degrees Farenheit
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp salt
1/3 cup shortening
4-5 tablespoons very cold water
Combine flour and salt in bowl. Cut in shortening until it is the size of small peas. With for, work in cold water, just a bit at a time, until the dough comes together. Form into disk and chill. When chilled, on floured surface roll into 12-inch diameter circle. Fit into 9-inch pie plate. Crimp edges. Prick holes all over. Line with a double layer of foil. Bake at 450 degrees Farenheit for 8 minutes. Remove foil and continue to bake 5-6 minutes more until golden brown. Cool.
|Cupcakes for the boys, pie for me!|
Who could ask for anything more? Not me, that's for sure!
60, a year away - bring it on!!!
Nutritional information per serving (1/10th of pie)
Sat. Fat: 4
Other carbs: 2