My lattice top apple pie
If you have learned anything from me thus far, you’ll know that when it officially turns “fall” for the rest of the US, it’s really just a continuation of summer for us Texans.  The weather has been more cooperative though; the high is now only in the 90s instead of triple digits.  I capped off the first official weekend of fall with a “strong to quite strong” sunburn from a deliciously long trail ride.  When the leaves start to turn, you can bet Ryon and I will be hitting the trail around the lake more often and enjoying not sweating to death from walking around.

This weekend, I also watched (almost) the entire Alien movie series, starting with Prometheus, the prequel with Michael Fassbender that came out in 2012, and working backward from there, since JR was aghast that the only Alien movie that I had ever seen was Alien vs. Predator.  What ended up amazing me about the series was the quality, particularly of the first two, for a sci-fi flick started in 1979.  Except for the terrible hair and a few minor technological gaps, I didn’t find many elements missing vs. a movie made now, particularly with the first two directed by Ridley Scott and James Cameron.  Also, for those of you familiar with the Bechdel test, Alien is the movie example used in her famous rule.

As a continuation to the Great Pie Experiment, during the past two weeks, I’ve baked a traditional lattice top apple pie and a Boston cream pie, which I suppose doesn’t really count as a pie but it has “pie” in the name so what the hell.  It should also come as no surprise that the weekend apparel is now confined to stretchy pants only.  Can’t wait until it cools down and that’s extended to sweatpants.

Pro: The lattice top for the apple pie was not as hard to make as I thought it was going to be.  Helpful hint for beginners: cut the lattice strips thicker in width than you think you want them to be.  They’ll stretch while you’re laying them over the top of the pie, even if you don’t mean for them to.  Even though I have quite a bit of work to do on crusts still (keep forgetting to fold the extra hangover under instead of over), the results turn out relatively nicely.  And no one has complained yet about aesthetics, as they’re too busy shoving pie into their mouths.

Pro: The Boston cream pie has been the easiest “pie” to make, out of all the pies baked thus far.  The recipe doesn’t involve slapping cake layers on top of each other or frosting anything.  Actually it sort of feels like cheating, using a yellow cake box mix and instant pudding but you know what?  It tastes good, and I would dare to say even better because it requires so very little effort.  I know, you’d think that would be the other way around but it really isn’t at all.  Plus it’s nice to throw a little variety in there, every once in awhile.  One can eventually get tired of pie crust or at least need a palate cleanser.

Con: I don’t have a pastry brush (or any other type of brush) and so ghetto-fied the egg wash on the apple pie with my fingers.  The crust still baked up golden brown, if not a little streaky.  Perhaps I should get unlazy and just buy a pastry brush.  The crust also needs to be kept very cold while you’re putting together the lattice or else it’ll tear and you’ll be forced to ball it all up and start again.  See, I need more practice.

Conclusion: If you want a quick and easy dessert (because who doesn’t?), make the Boston cream pie cheat version.  There’s minimum baking and assembly required.  The traditional apple pie is worth making if you want exactly that - a traditional looking apple pie that smells like heavenly fall when it’s baking in your oven.