Today’s lunch menu included an easy Pork Barbecue and an equally easy Strawberry Glaze Pie. I like to buy about 2 lbs. of lean boneless pork ribs (called Pork Loin Gourmet Ribs in my store). The ribs are cooked overnight in a slow cooker, then the next day the meat is pulled, combined with a sauce and baked in a 300 degree oven for 2 hours. I like the slow cooker for cooking the pork but prefer the flavor and consistency of the barbecue when it’s baked after the sauce is added.
MOM'S PULLED PORK BARBECUE
- 2 lbs. boneless country style ribs
Trim any fat from meat and place in slow cooker. Let cook 8-10 hours on low. Preheat oven to 300 degrees F Remove meat from slow cooker, drain and allow to cool until it can be pulled apart. Place the pulled pork in a 9×9 baking pan. Make the sauce:
- One 24 oz. bottle of catsup
- 2 Tblsp. dark brown sugar
- 2 Tblsp. Worcestershire Sauce
- 2 tsp. chili powder
- 2 Tblsp. dried minced onions
- 1 tsp. minced garlic
- 1/2 cup white vinegar
Pour the above sauce ingredients directly on top of the pork in the baking dish. Mix well and place in preheated 300 degree F oven. Bake uncovered for two hours, stirring occasionally. Barbecue is ready at this point but can be covered and kept in a 170 degree F oven until ready to serve. Serve on buns with coleslaw on top or on the side.
STRAWBERRY GLAZE PIE
Preheat oven to 410 degrees F. Roll out pastry for a single crust, 9″ pie (see my Sure-Fire Crust recipe
). Prick the crust with a fork on the bottom and sides.
Put a piece of aluminum foil loosely on top of the crust and fill with dry beans. I keep a jar filled with a pound of dry beans which I use over and over again.
Bake crust @ 410 degrees F for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and lift out foil with beans. Place the pie plate back in the oven and bake for an additional 10 minutes or until crust is golden brown. Remove from oven and let cool on a wire rack. Strawberry Filling and Glaze
- 5 cups of fresh strawberries, divided
- 1 cup water
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 Tblsp. cornstarch
Hull strawberries and if they are small they can be left whole. Otherwise, cut in half to make fairly uniform pieces. Place one cup of strawberries in a small saucepan. Crush berries with a big spoon or potato masher. Add water. Bring to a simmer over medium heat and continue simmering for 2 minutes. Pour the berry mixture through a sieve into another small saucepan. In a small bowl, combine the sugar and cornstarch – slowly whisk this mixture into the berry/water mixture and place on medium heat. Cook and whisk constantly until mixture is thick and clear – about 2 minutes. In the baked pie shell, place one-half of the strawberries and top with one-half of the glaze. Repeat with remaining berries and glaze. Chill for at least an hour – an inverted pie plate makes a good cover.
Serve with whipped cream or topping.
A really tasty lunch – and the leftovers are good, too!
My first job in 1950 was as a secretary in Procter & Gamble’s corporate offices in downtown Cincinnati. As a new employee, I received a large picnic basket full of P&G products, a leatherette box with the P&G logo filled with chocolates and my favorite item of all, a Crisco cookbook – New Recipes for Good Eating, copyright 1948.
I first heard about Crisco in high school home ec classes. My mother, always on a strict budget, used lard (and made wonderful pies), margarine or bacon grease. Occasionally, she’d buy a tiny one-pound can of Crisco for me to make a special dessert. After I was married in 1952, also on a strict budget, I still managed to find the money for Crisco. I started cooking in earnest and literally wore out the cookbook. The pages are dog-eared and stained – and some of them are missing.
About 50 years later, I happened to find the same cookbook in pristine condition in an antique market. Apparently, its owner didn’t cook as much as I did, or she was neater.
My favorite recipe in the book was for “Crisco’s Sure Fire” two-crust 9″ pie. Over the years, I changed the ingredients a little bit and developed a technique that worked well for me, although it’s not the method that the cookbook or any home ec class ever recommended. I’ve won ribbons at countless pie contests with this crust, including the Ohio State Fair, plus pie has always been the dessert of choice for my family for the past 55 years. Here is my version of the recipe and the way I mix the ingredients.
MY SURE-FIRE PIE CRUST
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 3/4 cup Crisco vegetable shortening
- 1/3 cup ice water
In a medium size mixing bowl, place the flour and salt. Note: I measure the flour by dipping the cup into the canister and then leveling it off. Stir flour and salt with a fork to mix. Add 3/4 cup Crisco shortening and cut in. I use my hands so I can feel the texture and know by now when it’s just right. Pour the ice water (always use ice water) into a dry measure 1/3 cup to the top and pour into flour mixture (don’t use a liquid measuring cup). Using a fork, stir the mixture in circles until it forms a ball. Divide the dough in half and roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface with short, light strokes, rolling from the center to the edges to about 12″ diameter. To keep the dough from sticking, I pick it up, turn it over and reposition, dusting very lightly with flour when necessary. I also continually wipe the rolling pin of any dough that’s sticking. With everything you do, use the lightest touch possible. It’s also possible to roll out the dough between sheets of waxed paper.
Place the dough in a pie pan and trim the edges. Continue with the filling you choose and the top crust. Bake according to your recipe’s directions.
The recipe can be used for one two-crust 9″ pie or two one-crust 9″ pies. I never double the recipe and I never make half a recipe. If there’s any pastry left over, I put it in a plastic bag and keep it in the freezer until I’m ready to use it.