Saturday, November 26, 2011

Pecan pies for mama's kitchen

Mama's kitchen is such a wonderful organization, I was so excited to finally be working in a commercial kitchen so that I could make some pies for their big 'pie in the sky' fundraiser!  Bakers all around San Diego craft delicious pies and donate them, and mama's kitchen sell them for $20 apiece to benefit their charity work.
I started by volunteering at the Just Call Us kitchen so that I could learn about making pecan pies from the pros!  They made 300 pies and I took charge melting butter.  The pie shells were ready made, which made it easier, but it still took all day with lots of experienced volunteers to make them.  Its always fun volunteering with Julie, she has a stellar crew of experienced chefs and you'll always meet someone interesting and pick up some wonderful tips in the kitchen while you are working there.  You generally find yourself thanking them instead of feeling like they should be thanking you after a day with the volunteers.

 Then the next day I started on mine!  I had already made all the pastry, which was a huge workout using Rachel's method!

Despite the fact that I'd tested the recipe and I was confident my pies would be good, I did have some trouble.  Hand made dough plays all kinds of tricks, it seemed a little thick to cut through on my first batch, so the second time, I made it thinner and it shrank into the shell.

So my contribution was considerably more rustic than the one from the other bakeries.  I was very happy to have been a part of this great endeavor and I'm eternally grateful to Darlene for helping me out on a rainy Sunday evening. 

Its funny to work with someone who doesnt normally work in an industrial kitchen, she was tasked with breaking 60 eggs into a bowl and it was a mind bogglingly large batch of filling we ended up making!

Thanks also to vintage sugar cube and gemini desserts for contributing towards the ingredients, this made the burden somewhat easier to bear.

Thanks also to Just call us kitchen and Cake for allowing me to use their kitchens and ovens for production!

I hope you all had a nice thanksgiving.  After all this baking, I was very happy to allow someone else to cook for us! 


Darlene said...

I had a great time hanging out in a large commercial kitchen. I think the most fun I had was washing the pots and pans! If you need any help in the future, don't hesitate to ask!

Rachel said...

Jenny! Your "rustic" pies look wonderful. Look at the flake on that crust!