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My apple pie universe

October 21, 2009
Not my pic, but it’s made the rounds on the Internet and I can’t find the original photographer.
Thank you, whoever you are.

If you want to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first invent the universe. – Carl Sagan

The details are irrelevant.  I’ve been busy inventing the universe.  And what a tasty, tasty place it is.  My universe is an endless cupboard, a timeless watch, and the mashed up philosophies of Kahlil Gibran, Julia Child, and yes, Carl Sagan.  I’ve been reading Shakespeare’s Sonnet #75So are you to my thoughts as food to life – and Like Water for Chocolate and How to Cook a Wolf.  And in between I’ve been comforting myself with spaghetti-o’s, sustaining myself with small batch pickles and slow braised ribs, and quenching my thirst with Pellegrino laced with leftover vanilla bean pear-poaching syrup.  In between, I’ve been a busy little bee.  That is my apple pie universe.

Hollywood Market 9-14-08

Summer is also taking its sweet time dying.  I’m an autumn girl.  Give me Orion in my sky and pomegranates in my bowl and pumpkins in my bread.  Without summer, I can’t make pickles.  But without fall, I can’t make everything else that fosters the giddy within me.  Cooler weather makes me bake things that I have to share – it’s just me and my guy and we have yet to find a way to eat 13 scones without killing our cholesterol.  Sharing is the best part.  Which brings me to a daunting proposition.

Hollywood Market 9-14-08

I’m creating a seasonal compendium.  A formulaic reference.  A culinary guide through the equinoxes and the solstices.  Probably 200 recipes total, which over the course of a year is about half a recipe a day, but we’ll say about three or four recipes a week.  The subject?

Canning and preserving.  Small batches.  Seasonal.   For the urban and suburban dweller with a lack of counter and cupboard space, but a gourmet kitchen-sized desire to make and share delicious and sustaining things.  It will not teach people how to preserve a 12 lbs. bag of roma tomatoes for winter – the USDA and countless other resources have that covered quite expertly.  I’m talking a small set of half pints of homemade ketchup, enough lemon curd for a few tea parties and gifts, and Sagan-inspired “Invented Universe” canned apple pie filling.


The project is already vitalizing.  I get to be imaginative and make scrumptious things for my guinea pigs friends.  I’m also a bit of a seasonal siren and cook by a sort of meteorological clock.  Maybe I’m not the only one who needs a few weeks notice before setting up to make my favorite pickle recipe.  But this fits my food focus like a glove.  The “four recipes a week” thing may be daunting, but nothing ventured, nothing stained.


I have all the credentials of an insanely curious home cook with Internet access, a copy of Strunk and White, a herd of supportive friends and family members, and pretensions of canning grandeur (Can those two words be paired? Why yes. Yes they can.).

I think it will all set up quite nice.

2 Comments leave one →
  1. October 22, 2009 12:01 AM

    Some creativity this 🙂

    Apple ~ Gravity. Pie ~ the mathematics of the universe. How apt.

    • feliciaelena permalink
      October 22, 2009 6:16 AM

      Mmmm gravity pie. Thanks for stopping by 🙂

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