Wednesday, March 14, 2018

Happy Pi Day (3.14) 2018! *plus* a Recipe






Happy Pi Day, My Lovelies!  This is a fun day for nerds everywhere: the day we celebrate pi and PIE!

This week I've been reading Luck, Love & Lemon Pie by Amy E. Reichert.  I haven't finished yet because it's Shelley's spring break: We've been super busy!  But so far, it's just as fun as The Coincidence of Coconut Cake, and you can find my review HERE.

According to Goodreads:

From the author of the “clever, creative, and sweetly delicious” (Kirkus Reviews) The Coincidence of Coconut Cake and The Simplicity of Cider comes a novel about an exasperated wife and mother who makes a play to reignite her marriage—and risks everything in a gamble she hopes is a sure bet.

When Milwaukee-area wife and mother MJ Boudreaux notices her husband Chris seems more interested in the casino than her, she’s more bothered that she isn’t upset than by her husband’s absence. She picks up poker as a way for them to spend more time together—and reignite their marital flame.

Although the game doesn’t give her the quality time with Chris that she’d hoped, MJ finds she has a knack for it. Increasingly unhappy at home, she turns to the felt top of the poker table for comfort. Intoxicated with newfound freedom, MJ begins spending more time at the gambling tables and less with her family, finally carving out for herself a place outside her role of wife and mother.


After a string of great wins, MJ finds herself in Vegas, attracting the attention of a certain magnetic poker star. But when she’s forced to choose between her family and her new exciting lifestyle, the stakes may be higher than she thought and MJ will have to play her hand carefully…or risk losing it all.






My thoughts so far...

The book begins with MJ on the back terrace at a restaurant, alone, on her wedding anniversary.  Chris was supposed to meet her for a celebratory luncheon, but he's a no show.  In the past, Chris baked an anniversary pie for them, but last year he claimed he didn't have time to bake.  MJ attempts to bake the pie this year, but her unsuccessful result prompts her to ask the chef at the restaurant to bake it for them.  So she eats the entire pie along with three old fashions over an almost two hour time span while she waits for Chris.  From the get-go the reader knows that this marriage is in a wee bit of trouble.

I like MJ's wit and gumption as she becomes better at poker.  Her character is sassy, and I think she believes she's a good mother because she wants to be a good mother.  Their family motto, B-DIO (pronounced bee dee o), "Boudreauxs Do It Ourselves," needs an overhaul, but I can't tell you why because it would be a spoiler.  I think that mothers everywhere can relate to MJ's search for balance in her life.  Her attempts to make time for the important things including herself make her a relatable character.

Chris's Anniversary Pie recipe is in the back of the book, and it's for a basic Lemon Custard Pie, but the genius in it is a lemon sugar syrup that's used to paste the piecrust after baking and used in the whipped cream.  Wow, does it make a difference!

"Dwelling on the what-ifs will blind you to the wonderfulness of what is." -MJ from Luck Love & Lemon Pie




Below is my grandmother's recipe for lemon pie.  I hope you try it and like it!

Lemon Pie

1 (14-ounce) can sweetened condensed milk
4 large egg yolks
7 tablespoons fresh key lime juice
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1 T key lime zest
1T lemon zest

For the topping:
1 cup chilled heavy cream
2 tablespoons powdered sugar

One prepared pie crust, either graham cracker or deep dish

Place rack in the center of oven and preheat to 350°F.

Whisk condensed milk and yolks together in a large bowl. Add key lime and lemon juice and whisk until well-combined (mixture will thicken slightly).  Stir in zest.

Pour filling into crust and bake until center is just set, about 15 minutes. Transfer pie to a wire rack and let cool completely (filling will set as it cools), about 1 hour. Transfer to refrigerator and chill until cold for two hours at least.

Make the topping:

When ready to serve, whip cream with a whisk or electric mixer to very soft peaks. Sprinkle sugar over cream and continue whipping until it holds stiff peaks. Dollop cream in center of pie (leaving at least a 1" border of visible pie filling) and serve.

NOTE:  When I'm certain we won't eat the pie in one sitting, I leave the topping off the pie and add the topping to single servings.  Sometimes I cheat and use a store bought whipped topping.

My grandmother sometimes added meringue to this recipe.  Use two egg whites, beat, and add four tablespoons sugar and beat until stiff peaks form.  Add to pie and bake until bake until meringue is browned.  


Happy Pi Day, y'all!

If you'd like to order a copy of Luck, Love & Lemon Pie, please click on the IndieBound affiliate link below!


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We have lots of stuff going on the next several days: a big wedding anniversary, my grandmother's 98th birthday, and our daughters' spring breaks.  I'll be taking a break and return on March 23rd.

Until next time...

Happy reading!
Ricki Jill



10 comments:

  1. I have never made a lemon pie. I will have to try this.

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  2. Fun nod to PI day RJ. Love the cover on the book and your grandmother's recipe for Lemon Pies sound really good. A lot like the one my mom used. Hope you are enjoying the sunshine but this cold is crazy!

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  3. This pie sounds great. Have safe travels to all your family events. Enjoy.
    xoxo
    Kris

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  4. Did someone say pie, I will have a slice of apple pie with warm custard.
    I know nothing about pi

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  5. Happy pie day Ricky Jill! I have read this book and it's delightful!
    Jenna

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  6. Well, this looks like a keeper! I just might have to try that one out for Easter. Definitely a possibility. And if not Easter, spring for sure! Thanks!

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  7. Wish I had a piece of that lemon pie with my coffee this morning! Have a great weekend, Ricki Jill.

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  8. this looks like a good one.
    Thank you for the recipe :)

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  9. Yum, your grandmother's lemon pie recipe sounds delicious. Lemon desserts are my second favorite (right behind chocolate). Hope you're having a lovely spring break!

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