Elsie’s Cranberry Pie

The good news is we are finely to the best part of Thanksgiving dinner, dessert. The bad news is the dessert is not Whole30 compliant. I was going to try some desserts that were technically compliant, remember desserts wouldn’t actually be allowed on a Whole 30, but my friend, Heather, and I paid our first visit to the new Aldi grocery store in Moorhead Monday night. They had fresh cranberries for .98 cents a bag. I bought one and Heather gave me hers because she didn’t know you had to cook cranberries to make them edible. I have to find something to do with the 24 ounces of fresh cranberries I have.

I dug this recipe out of the recesses of my draft pile where it had been hiding for at least 2 years. It is super easy because there is no pie dough to make and roll out. Instead you make a batter and just spread it over the top of the cranberries. Serve this pie warm.

Elsie's Cranberry Pie

The cookbook I adapted this recipe from came from the library and I can’t remember the name of it.


1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries

1/4 cup chopped pecans

1/4 cup honey, divided

1 egg

6 TBS all purpose flour

4 TBS butter, melted

Preheat the oven to 325 degrees.  Spray a 5 inch deep dish pie pan with non-stick cooking spray.  Add the cranberries and pecans. Drizzle 2 tablespoons of honey over the cranberries and pecans; set aside. In a small bowl, beat the egg until the white and yolk are well combined.  While still beating, add the remaining 2 tablespoons honey, flour and melted butter; mix well.  Spread the mixture over the cranberry pecan mixture. Bake for 45 minutes or until the crust is lightly toasted brown.  Let cool 5 minutes and serve warm.

A Small Batch Thanksgiving — Cranberry Pie


Can you believe there are only 3 more weeks until Thanksgiving?!   I work in retail and am so not ready for the craziness that comes with that.  I am ready, however, to make a wonderful Thanksgiving dinner for me and a couple  of my co-workers.

Pie probably isn’t the first thing you think of when you think of cranberries but it should be. Cranberries make a wonderful filling for a non traditional Thanksgiving pie.

Usually, cranberries are paired with another fruit like apples or pears to help tame the cranberries tartness. Not this pie.  This pie has straight up pucker power but not in a bad way.  I think cranberry pie is a nice contrast to the other sweet, sweet desserts, like pecan pie and pumpkin pie, on our tables at Thanksgiving.

Cranberry Pie

1 cup whole cranberries
1 cup chopped cranberries
1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 tsp cornstarch
a pinch of nutmeg
a pinch of salt
1/4 – 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
1 1/2 tsp butter
1 egg white
1 1/2 tsp water
1 recipe for a double pie crust
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Put cranberries, sugar, cornstarch, nutmeg, salt and walnuts in a medium bowl. Mix well with a spoon and set aside.  Divide the dough for the crust into 2 pieces, on slightly bigger than the other.  Roll out the smaller piece of dough and place the dough in the pan.  Dot the top of the cranberries with butter cut into small pieces.  Roll out the remaining dough so it is slightly bigger than the pan.  Carefully lay the dough over the filling and crimp the edges closed. Cut a few vents into the crust.  Seperate the egg white from the yolk.  Gently beat the white with a fork.  Brush the white onto the crust and sprinkle a 1-2 teaspoons of sugar over the top.  Bake on the middle rack of the oven until the crust is golden, about 40 minutes.


DIY Spice Blends — Pumpkin Pie Spice

According to the calendar, fall starts today. You know what that means? I can finally drag out all the pumpkin recipes I have been dying to adapt. Unlike cranberries, a seasonal fruit I can and do eat all year around, pumpkin is definitely a limited to fall kind of product.

Since I only make pumpkin recipes for a limited time each year I am reluctant to go buy those bottles of pumpkin pie spice. I never use it all, even when I buy the small bottles and no matter what my Mom says, spices don’t last forever. This recipe for pumpkin pie spice makes an incredibly small batch, only two teaspoons. The recipe is easily doubled if you need more.

Homemade Pumpkin Pie Spice

1 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp ginger
1/4 tsp cloves or all spice
1/4 tsp nutmeg
Mix all ingredients together. Store in a sealed container. 2 teaspoons of pumpkin pie spice

Rhubarb Pie


Only 19 more days until I go on my trip to Minneapolis with my friend, Steph. We are both big fans of the CW show, Supernatural and we are going to the very first Supernatural convention in Minnesota. I am very excited. I haven’t been on a trip in a very long time and Steph and I always have a good time no matter what we do.

The problem with going on trips is that they are expensive so I am saving every penny I can between now and the convention. This means eating at home or at a home made meal and not spend a penny more than I have to until I leave for my trip. This doesn’t mean that I have to eat nothing but ramen noodles for the next three weeks. One of the great things about being able to cook is that I can eat and eat well, even when I am strictly budgeting my money.

I can even afford to have dessert. Rhubarb is my second favorite fruit. I use it in the spring and summer when I can’t get fresh cranberries. The apartments on either side of mine have huge patches of rhubarb that no one ever uses so I got permission to use them and boy have I been using them. This pie is sweet and tangy and everything rhubarb pie is meant to be. So don’t worry, Dean. Whenever you and Sam are hunting in North Dakota there will always be pie for you.

Rhubarb Pie

2 cups fresh or frozen rhubarb, thawed
2 cups boiling water
¾ cup sugar
1 ½ TBS all-purpose flour
½ tsp quick cooking Tapioca
3 TBS lightly beaten egg
1 tsp cold water
Pastry dough for 5 inch double crust
1 ½ tsp butter
Place the rhubarb in a colander; pour the boiling water over the rhubarb and allow to drain. In a large bowl, mix the sugar, flour and tapioca. Add the drained rhubarb and toss to coat. Let stand 15 minutes. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and cold water. Stir into the rhubarb mixture. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. On a lightly floured surface, roll one half of the dough into a 1/8 inch thick circle; transfer to a 5” deep pie plate. Trim even with the rim. Add filling; roll the remaining dough into 1/8 inch thick circle, slightly larger then the pie plate. Place over filling and trim, seal and flute the edges. Cut slits in the top and bake 15 minutes. Reduce oven setting to 350 degrees. Bake 40-50 minutes longer until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbly. Cool on a wire rack.

Corned Beef and Cabbage Pie

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I don’t usually post two recipes in one day but in honor of PI day and as an early St. Patrick’s day recipe, I thought I would post a savory pie recipe for corned beef and cabbage pie.

I use corned beef and Swiss cheese from the deli where I work. If you have leftover corned beef brisket you could use that instead. If you don’t have thousand island dressing use 1 tablespoon ketchup and 1 tablespoon mayonnaise. I really like the thick biscuit like crust one this. If you don’t, use only half the dough. If you have liquid buttermilk, delete the buttermilk powder and water. Add 1/2 cup plus 2 tablespoons liquid buttermilk.

Corned Beef Cabbage Bake

1 cup all purpose flour
1 ½ tsp baking powder
½ tsp salt
2 TBS plus 1 ½ tsp buttermilk powder
1 ½ TBS oil
½ cup plus 2 TBS water

2 TBS butter, cubed
2 cups shredded cabbage
6 TBS onion, chopped
½ tsp carroway seeds
6 oz deli corned beef
4 oz swiss cheese
2 TBS 1000 Island dressing

In a small bowl, combine flour, baking powder, salt and buttermilk powder. Add the water and oil, mix as little as possible. Spread into a 6 inch cake pan sprayed with non-stick cooking spray. In another small bowl combine the cabbage, onion, caraway seeds, corned beef, Swiss cheese, and Thousand Island dressing, mix well. Pour cabbage mixture into the pan onto the crust. Bake at 400 degrees for 20 minutes. Slice and serve.