A Contest, A Memory, A Recipe

A contest, a memory and a recipe….Greetings one and all. Merry Christmas. Over on the Romance Writer’s Weekly Blog, we’re running a fabulous Christmas event starting December 3, 2015.  Today, I’ll tell you about the giveaway, tomorrow Fred will appear and the games begin.

I am beyond excited for this event. I sure wish I could enter; I could use an Amazon gift card to feed my reading addiction. I’m hoping you’ll find the time to play along with us. It’s going to be fun to search out Old Fred and learn about other’s holiday traditions and memories.

Christmas has always been important to me. For me it’s a time to reconnect with the people in my life. It’s a time of love and caring and giving.  It’s a time to appreciate all that I have and those I love. With the exception of shopping crowds (which is why I shop early) I love it all. I love the music, the decorations, the lights, the food, the candy, the alcohol, the food, the wrapping, the decorating. And did I mention…the food?

My favorite Christmas memory happened just this year. Hubby and I have three grandchildren. The oldest is three, the youngest is 18 months. Hubby and I have started decorating (by the time this post goes live, I’ll have at least two of four trees up and decorated.) Last week we strung up a few lights in the living room/playroom we set them up with a power bar so the kiddies could turn them on themselves. One their first visit, they flipped the switch and the smiles, the giggles, the laughing and pointing, were worth every second of effort it took to string up those lights. We’ve added a few more lights.

There are four strings up (so far). It thrills me to pieces to see their smiling faces as they point and babble. The oldest always pats her chest and says, “Grampa put up mine snowflake lights. For me.” She’s so proud that the lights are hers and so excited to turn them on and look at them. It just melts my heart. I can’t wait until the see the trees.

Such a small thing, and such a gift and blessing to be found in those sweet smiling faces.

I can’t recall, did I mention the food?

Here’s a family favorite recipe.

Gramma K’s Awesome Apple Pie.

Recipe makes three nine inch pies.

Never Fail Pie Crust:

Makes 3 covered pie shells or six pie crust bottoms.
6 cups flour
1.5 Teaspoons salt
1 pound shortening or lard (I only use Tenderflake)
1 Egg
1 Tablespoon White Vinegar
Cold Water
Sift flour and salt together in a large bowl.
Cut in shortening. Cut with a pastry cutter or two knives until a fine meal is reached.
Mix, egg and vinegar together in a measuring cup.
Add water to bring level to one cup.
Add egg/vinegar/water mixture to flour/lard mixture. Start by adding ¾ of a cup. Add more if needed to make pasty workable. Work pastry as little as possible to avoid making it tough.
Blend well. This will give you enough to make three covered pies.
Roll out on a floured board. Note: You may need to chill before rolling.

Apple Pie Filling:

Makes enough to fill three 9 inch pies.
2 bags of MacIntosh apples…about six pounds.
1.5 cup brown sugar
1 1/3 cup flour
1.5 cup white sugar
2-3 Tablespoons cinnamon powder

Mix dry ingredients in a bowl.
Slice apples thinly.
Mix apples with dry ingredients. Stir well.
Put into pie shells, do not prick pie shells first.
Dot with butter if desired.
Optional: Brush ridge with mixture of egg and water to help layers stick together.
Cover with another shell with vent holes cut into it.
Press edges together with a fork or fingers and trim off excess.
Optional: To make crusts golden brown they can be brushed with a mixture of egg and water.
Bake at 450 for 10 minutes.
Reduce heat to 350 for 35 minutes.

Don’t forget to take part in the contest. Be sure to visit:  https://romancewritersweekly.wordpress.com/news/

Wishing you a Merry Christmas and the best year ever.