18 Jun The Great Pastry Fail of Father’s Day 2013 & What I’ve Been Up to Lately
I had a crash and burn experience in the kitchen this weekend. Quite possibly the worst thing I’ve ever made.
Let me fill you in on a little back story. When my dad was a kid, his mom (my Nana) used to make him and his brothers a dish called pasties. Nana grew up in the upper peninsula Michigan, a heavy mining area. It was common for the miners’ kids to run home during their lunch break, grab a lunch pail from their mothers containing a pasty, and then run it to their fathers at work. While that’s no longer a way of life in the UP, pasties stuck.
A pasty is Cornish dish that I can best describe as a cross between a Hot Pocket and an empanada. You take pastry dough and fill it with steak, potatoes & onions. Season it with a little salt and pepper. Add a few pats of butter, close the pastry up, bake and that’s all there is to it. Simple, hearty food. Perfect for feeding hungry miners…or four growing boys in Nana’s case.
My dad often asks that my mom and I make him pasties on special occasions. My mom is not a baker and frankly, I’ve always been terrified of pastry dough so we’ve always used packaged pie dough from the grocery store. Up until this weekend, that is. This time when my dad requested pasties for Father’s Day, I got brave and decided I could make pastry dough, piece of cake! My dad gifted me a great Julia Child cookbook for Christmas last year that had a seemingly fool-proof step-by-step guide to perfect pastry. Simple, right?!
NOT AT ALL.
NOT IN THE SLIGHTEST.
I mean, look at this mess!
And that’s just the start of it. After baking, the pastry might as well have been sand. Dry.Crumbly.Mess. I’m pretty sure Julia Child is rolling over in her grave y’all.
My failure was rooted in the fact that I didn’t add enough water so the dough was far too dry. It was an unusually humid day here in Austin so I tried to adjust the moisture content accordingly. Obviously, I misjudged. I didn’t even take a picture of the final product I was so embarrassed.
Luckily, my daddy loves me unconditionally (and is a great sport) so he was nice about the whole Pasty Disaster of Father’s Day 2013.
I’ve learned from this experience and I’m now determined to master pastry dough. You can be sure that there will be some pies coming your way with perfect, flaky, buttery crust. I’m a woman on a mission.
And since I was planning on using the same dough to make a rustic mango & raspberry tart, I have no confections to share with you today. Instead, I thought I’d share a few little glimpses into my life outside of the kitchen. Here’s what I’ve been up to lately!
1. Dominating 80’s Themed Costume Parties
Yes, this happened. My good friend Grant had an 80’s themed roller skating party for his 28th birthday (OLD man). A BYOB rollerskating party. So while I dominated in the costume category, me + roller skates + beer = hot mess. I like to imagine I looked super bitchin’ (80’s terminology for you), like Olivia Newton John in Xanadu but that was not the case. I have the bruises and a sore tailbone to prove it.
2. Rubbing Elbows with The Pioneer Queen (and more importantly The Marlboro Man!) @ BlogHer Food 2013
In this post, I told you how anxious and excited I was for my first food blogger’s conference, BlogHer Food. Well, I had no reason to be nervous! I had such a great time. The best part was getting to meet tons of extremely talented women and fellow bloggers from all over the country. We learned a ton, ate even more and formed friendships that I’m sure will last a long time. Some of us local Austin gals are already planning our first dinner club meeting (a great idea we got from Meagan, The BakerMama).
I also got to meet the Pioneer Woman and her super hunky husband, The Marlboro Man. Swoooooon.
3. Hanging out with this chick magnet
4. And lusting after…
That’s all for now. Stay tuned for treats later this week!