Thursday, March 15, 2012

pies of all kinds

I have been neglecting any NUMBER of topics in this blog, but let’s pick the most recent one, eh?

That, of course, being a super great holiday- PI DAY! 3.14! Yesterday. Oops.

I didn’t eat any pie yesterday because I forgot it was Pi day until after I’d already eaten everything I wanted to for the day.

Fortunately, I have a lovely pie experience to share from last Friday, my only proper day off (due to still having work all the other days) in my community college spring break.It was a thoroughly great day off with a thoroughly great pie experience.

May I present: dangerously delicious pies.

Literally… that’s the name… on H Street, offspring of the same-named place in Baltimore, Dangerously Delicious Pies!

I love DDP because… They have an adorable series of chalkboards (I know Ms. Smart Kitchen is with me!) touting their flavors of the day in savory, quiche, and sweet…


… And pies under the counter in a charmingly old-fashioned display at which you can ogle.


The vibe is casual, pretty, and ever so slightly glamorous with chandeliers. And cool work by local artists! (And they get good business, we just had deigned to eat lunch at 3:30 in the afternoon on a Friday, on which these establishments understandably are not especially crowded).


Any place that offers Cokes in glass bottles AND offers Diet AND has a bottle opener hanging off the cooler so you can do it yourself earns my love.


The hot sauce bar earned Steve’s.


And guys… EVERYTHING IS IN A PIE! When you have been walking around for miles and miles and miles and you are vair hungry, it is pretty amazing to know that anything you eat is going to have its deliciousness enhanced by being encased… in a pie!

Thus, meet the vegan chili… IN A PIE.

This was so. stinkin’. good.


First I thought it was just a bowl of vegan chili. No. Then I thought it’d have some kind of unconventional cornbread-type pie crust.


This was baked in a flakylicious legit pie crust! (Impressive accomplishment for something vegan. I hope it didn’t contain trans fat but decided ignorance was bliss in this case).

And the chili! Hefty chunks of chickpeas, perfectly cooked veggies, and chewy rice, seasoned with a wonderful blend of almost Indian-reminiscent spices.

And the salad on the side, a delightful and healthy surprise, had super classy greens and a great balsamic vinaigrette.

Steve’s (first) quiche contained spinach and an awesomely huge amount of goat cheese. He had a crab-and-cheddar-quiche chaser. Oh and then had a footlong at Subway. The boy can EAT!


I thoroughly recommend Dangerously Delicious Pies. We did not have any of the dozen or so (!) sweet pies offered that day but man oh man will we be back. (With, er, perhaps, my real camera! I’ve been forgetting it for everything lately. Thanks to Steve for being nice and having a good phone!)

And then, go figure, the President had dinner at H Street later that night. He just follows me everywhere.

So more on the subject of pies, another much beloved kind of pie, of course, is the PIZZA pie!

You know what is fun? Gathering people together for a make your own pizza evening.

You just lay out the toppings, conventional and non (tomato sauce, bbq sauce, caramelized onions, tomatoes, olives, sausage, mushrooms, cheese assortment)…


… admire your loved one’s spinning abilities (apparently my boyfriend and best friend color coordinate their outfits before hanging out together… I love it!)

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And top the pies to your tastes!

Pizza can be a totally healthful food. In the true tradition, according to the people I know who’ve eaten the traditional style in Italy, pizza is just leftover bread dough tugged out topped with a light smattering of toppings. In that spirit, I took my (healthful whole wheat- recipe from Healthy Cooking For Two or Just You) dough and spread it with lotsa tomato, lotsa mushrooms, and flavorful sprinklings of cheese and caramelized onion.

Plus crushed red pepper flakes, duh.


Set my oven to the HOTTEST it’d go and baked it til it looked… done.

Then moved it to the seating area of my kitchen with totally different colored lighting, heh!

My crust was on the doughy side. It was grand. And caramelized onions are awesome on pizza, as they are everywhere.


Lydia had a similar combo with the addition of tomato sauce and olives, and a classy rectangular shape. She focused a great deal on crust formation. Vair impressive.


While we each took up an oven rack with our pies, I meanwhile threw together an Italianish salad with farmer’s market greens, artichoke hearts, tomatoes, and a balsamic reduction vinaigrette.


A thoroughly classy dinner, with pizza cut in a casual manner.


But wait.

Lydia and I had each taken an oven rack, so Steve waited patiently and went last.

In a preview of what was to come, Steve buttered his baking sheet. A lot.


Then SHELLACKED his crust in toppings and cheesy cheese cheese.

It took longer to bake due to general massiveness and, as Steve put it, he liked his pizza pretty much burned.



The evening concluded with (Lydia’s brilliant idea) dipping pizza crusts in balsamic reduction.


May I recommend having a make-your-own-pizza get together? The host or hostess makes little to no effort, everyone gets exactly what they want and nothing they don’t, dietary restrictions can be accomodated, everyone gets to be creative and get physical with their dough… and at the end there is pizza. And pizza is great.

Happy pi(e) day one and all. Hopefully a real post soon?

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