Celebrating Black History with Grandma & Lemon Meringue Pies

I’m celebrating Black History with my grandmother, Helen and Lemon Meringue Pies!

My grandmother was known for her Lemon Meringue and Sweet Potato Pies.  Pies, to this day my mother pretends to properly make LOL.  ‘Black History’ doesn’t have to be about a subject or person you never met, but could be a relative or even yourself!  So, how I wish to take time today to reflect and offer gratitude is to focus on Lemon Meringue Pies because they make me think of my grandmother and SHE is my history!

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RECIPE:

Grandma’s Lemon Meringue Pie 

1 cup sugar
2 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoon conrstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups water
2 lemons, juiced and zested
2 tablespoons butter
4 egg yolks, beaten
1 (9 inch) pie crust, baked
4 egg whites
6 tablespoons sugar

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  • In a medium saucepan, mix together sugar, flour, cornstarch and salt.
  • Next stir in water, lemon juice and lemon zest while cooking over medium-high heat until mixture comes to a boil then add butter.
  • Whisk egg yolks in bowl, then add half of the hot mixture into the yolks. Slowly combine then add entire yolk mixture back into the original hot mixture in sauce pan to bring to a boil, continuing stirring until thick.
  • Once thickened, remove from heat and pour into baked pie crust, allow to set/form
  • For the meringue, in a bowl, whip egg whites until foamy.
  • Gradually add a little sugar as needed and continue to whip until stiff peaks form.
  • Spread meringue over cooled pie
  • Bake pie in oven for 10 minuets or until meringue is slightly brown/golden on top.

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Celebrating Black History Month – Los Angeles Black Owned Businesses (Dessert Guide)

Offering an updated 2018 guide to (B.O.) Bakeries throughout Los Angeles, CA.

27th Street Bakery
2700 South Central Ave.
Los Angeles, CA. 90011
323-233-3469

Big Man Bakes
413 S. Main St. @4th
Los Angeles, CA 90013
213-617-9100

Bonnie B Bakery
6344 Topanga canyon Blvd., Suite 1030
Woodland Hills, California
747-226-3497

Cobblers Cakes & Kream
2323 W Manchester Blvd.
Inglewood, CA 90305
323-455-1224

Cobbler Lady
3854 Crenshaw Blvd
Los Angeles, CA 90008
323-298-2144

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Celebrating Black History Month…with the pastry fork

On March 1, 1892 the special version of the pastry fork was patented by Ms. Anna M. Mangin.  Designed to cut together butter and flour to create pie crusts and cookies, the pastry fork was a tool to use without involving your hands to physically manipulate the ingredients.  The utensil could also be used to beat eggs and mash other food items.

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Looks like an open slotted spatula huh?  It was be made of iron, steel, wood or any other suitable material.  The pastry fork allowed the ingredients to mix and pass through freely and was also designed to thoroughly cut and pulverize the dry pastry.

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Luckily with the Emancipation Proclamation in 1863, African-Americans could finally receive patents on their inventions.  So many never gained recognition for their achievements prior.  Some never wanted to be identified, believing their nationality or sex would hinder the rise and success of their inventions.

Well, I am proud of my ancestors and their inventions, patented or not, named or unnamed.  There are so many tools we use today because of them and I am forever baking-liciously thankful 🙂

Celebrating Black History Month…with sweet potato pie

For Black History Month I wasn’t sure what I should do.  After going back and forth with different ideas I finally decided for the third time lol to create a short list of popular desserts hosted by Blacks/African-Americans.  Today I shall start off with pie.

Food has always been utilized for celebrations or simply an opportunity to gather with loved ones.  Soul Food, the term originating from the 60’s, known as the African-American Southern Cuisine has been an important staple of our culture.  Combining ingredients, recipes and experiences passed down from our African elders, Native Americans and even Europeans is what makes it interesting and dear to our hearts.

With recipes dating back to Medieval Europe, the Sweet Potato Pie is a traditional open face pie usually prepared by boiling the potatoes until soft and skinning them for mashing.  The pie filing is usually a combination of the mashed potatoes, sugar, milk and eggs, however varied regions include spices, flavoring or additions such as vanilla and cinnamon.

Today Blacks/African-Americans are mainly familiar with sweet potato pies.  It’s the staple of most African-American homes. However, Africans were more familiar with yams since yams were native to Africa.    Around the 16th century, Europeans brought over the practice of preparing pumpkin pies as a main dessert to West Africans as well as sweet potatoes.   However, during the times of slavery, Africans abandoned the use of pumpkin and leaned towards the use of yams and of course eventually transitioned into sweet potatoes.

th.jpeg (photo credit: metrocuisine.net)

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Bacon Slut

(Facebook repost)

YUP, that’s what I said – Bacon Slut!  Bacon Lover, Bacon Connoisseur, my friend even calls me Baconator of which I think is cute.   So yes, I love bacon and if you know anything about me, of which you are learning, you will soon understand my appreciation for it.  I love bacon so much I even wrapped my turkey in it for the holidays.

Well, Marvin and I were informed about a spot called Saint Marc – Pub Cafe, Bakery & Cheese Affinage.  Why?  Duh – because they have BACON!!!   So to Saint Marc’s we go!  <PAUSE> In case you needed to know what bacon is, it’s cured pork that is prepared in a variety of cuts and flavors.  <UNPAUSE>  So here’s the deal.  It’s cute, clean, gives cool breeze beach ambiance while located upstairs of an outdoor shopping plaza.   No need to make reservations for it doesn’t seem to get that packed for breakfast.  Staff was pleasant, a little hard to locate, but still a nice spot to have gone to just once.

Now, allow me to mention the bacon bar option.  Yup, that’s what I said – bacon bar.  You can select a variety of flavored bacon strips to compliment your “meal.”  Tell us more – OK!  <clears throat> EACH slice of bacon will run you a cost of $3.00 – $4.00 (depending on which flavor).  We only tried Apple pie, Maple and English (English sucked FYI).  And I disliked the menu because it’s so limited on breakfast items.  So, If you want a cute spot to try that doesn’t offer bread items such as waffles or french toast, but offers grits, cheese boards, alcohol, varied bacon, hot cereal, sandwiches, bread and pastries then yes go – hint the name of the business.  If you’re starch eater like myself then you will not enjoy this place as much and would need to be open for other items.  Oh and the beach is across the road.  That’s a great plus!  You wont be able to view it while eating, but once finished you can take a walk downstairs and people watch.

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These other limited items we tried included my peach danish which I freaking loved that also topped with bacon.  In addition to the danish, we also ordered a bowl of chili and tried fried grits for the first time.  My only dislike was that it included cheese and I’m against cheese in my grits.  So, yeah, we pretty much had a bacon day.  Would I go back?  It’s a little far so no, no need to, but yes I would say go try it out for yourself just because AND there’s bacon people of which is the best part!

Amenities (parking, location, seating, menu selections, etc) **
Customer Service (greeted, helpful, polite, checking-in, etc) ***
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Experience (themed, music, atmosphere, energy, etc) ***
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