Big explosions of strawberries and shortbread—just snapping and screaming with flavor—are the only “incendiary” devices of excitement that I need (and can handle) on the 4th of July. A fantastically delicious pie should just be enough, damn it, but no, the neighbors insist on lighting their own garages on fire while shooting off fireworks at our house. No, it’s not the noise that bothers us. It’s the *!!*# incessant rain of fire aimed. at. our. house.
In any case, I made a pie, and the refrigerator peed all over the floor. I wish it would go outside and pee on the neighbors’ fireworks, but it insists on doing its business on our floor.
“Why do we even have this thing?” I ask Nate. “If it’s going to leak out the bottom, why can’t it do that on the neighbors’ fire power?”
Nate does not answer me; secretly, he hopes the refrigerator has other super-powers like flying over rooftops to strategically unleash icy cold rivers of terror onto unsuspecting pyrotechnic enthusiasts who think they’ve “got this” because they’ve had way more beer than we have.
However, we both know that the refrigerator is probably only mildly possessed, which means it will just pull a leaky prank every now and then—on us. In other words, things are coming at us from all directions—outside and inside.
So, what happened to the pie during all of this? Nothing. It turned out great—totally unaffected by incontinent appliances and *!!!## neighbors.
To make the pie, I searched the Internet for recipes for a shortbread cookie pie crust and a good pie filling. Based on my searches, I pieced together the following recipe/method, which I will share:
1 cup of butter, softened
½ cup of powdered sugar
2 cups of all-purpose flour
1 quart of strawberries
¾ cup of water
3 Tbsp cornstarch
1 cup of granulated sugar
A few drops of red food coloring (if desired)
Mix the butter, powdered sugar, and the flour in a bowl. (You might have to mix this with your hands until it comes together.)
Press the dough into a glass pie plate/pan.
Bake at 350 for 12-20 minutes. (The crust was a little thick, so it took a little longer for it to cook through.)
Let the crust cool completely.
In a bowl, combine half of the quart of strawberries and the sugar. Mash them together.
In a medium sized saucepan, heat the sugar/strawberry mixture until boiling—stir constantly. You can add the food coloring at this point if you want.
Whisk together the cornstarch and water.
Slowly add the cornstarch mixture to the sugar/strawberry mixture. Stir constantly and reduce the heat to low—for about 10 minutes, to let the mixture thicken.
Cut up the remaining strawberries and place them into the cool pie crust.
Pour the strawberry glaze over the top and refrigerate for a few hours.
Results: Definitely delicious, with a sweet-tart filling and a buttery crispy crust, but it won’t put out any neighborhood fires. I’ll have to build an army of refrigerators with leaky bladders—and give them a snazzy “dangerous” name, like Big Thunder Cyclone of Urgency.
In Other News: I have two publications to share! “The Smutty Book Club” can be found in The Daily Drunk Magazine. I’m super excited about this one. It’s a funny/absurd work of fiction that answers the question: How does one get kicked out of a smutty book club? It can be found here: “The Smutty Book Club.” The other one is “The Treadmill,” (short story/horror genre) in the 50th issue of The Sirens Call eZine—pp. 229-231. Cheers!
Your Turn: What is your favorite summer dessert?