Beautiful advice from a divorced man after 16 years of marriage

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Perfect Holiday Heart-Berry Pie

During the holidays, it is absolutely inevitable that the level of obligatory family gatherings is going to be at an all-time high.  The need to entertain is imminent, and the time to do so is limited, so it is important to not only bake hard, but “bake smart!”  We all have some nosy co-worker to outdo or a significant other to impress, do we not?

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This adorable pie is not incredibly time-consuming (mainly depending on if you insist on baking your own crust or not, which I do.)  I found the inspiration for the heart design on Pinterest, although the recipe for filling is my own classic filling that I love for pies and cheesecakes.  I think that you will find that although it is beautiful, it is rather simple to make, and a ton of fun!

What you’ll need:

For filling:

  • 3 cups fresh strawberries
  • 1 cup blackberries
  • 3 small kiwis
  • 1/2 cup Sugar in the Raw
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1 tsp. fresh lemon juice
  • 3 Tbs. whole wheat flour (to thicken)

For Bottom Crust:

  • 2 1/2 cups of whole wheat baking flour, plus extra for rolling
  • 1 cup (2 sticks or 8 ounces) unsalted butter, very-cold, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon sugar
  • 6 to 8 teaspoons ice water

For Heart Design on Crust:

  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1 package Pillsbury Pie Crusts (contains 2)

Directions:

  1. Begin with the bottom crust.  I love this recipe by simple recipes.com:  http://www.simplyrecipes.com/recipes/perfect_pie_crust/.  I replaced the white, all-purpose flour with whole wheat flour out of personal preference, as it is healthier.  Ingredients are listed above.
  2. For filling, slice strawberries and kiwis into chunks, leave blackberries whole, and cook over medium heat on stovetop.  Stir in Sugar in the Raw, lemon juice and water.  Slowly mix in whole wheat flour, one tablespoon at a time so as to avoid clumping.  Cook on stovetop, covered, for 13-15 minutes.  Let filling cool completely in refrigerator before pouring filling into cooled pie crust.Image
  3. While filling is cooking, take this time to use a heart-shaped cookie cutter to cut hearts into the two Pillsbury crusts and set aside.
  4. Whisk egg yolk and brush egg wash over edges of pie crust.  Firmly press hearts along the outside of pie crust and carefully layer remaining hearts on the pie in the design as shown above, repeating the pattern and working from the outside in.Image
  5. Brush the top of pie with the remaining egg wash.Image
  6. Bake pie at 425 degrees for 20 minutes.  Reduce heat to 350 and bake for an additional 20-25 minutes until the top is golden brown and Enjoy! 🙂

Pizza Does Not Have to be Boring (Or Expensive)!

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Pizza doesn’t have to be greasy, involve a delivery-teenager, or be a fattening waste of important meal time with your family.  My son and I made this healthy and delicious pizza together.  We used Boboli’s Whole Wheat Crust (around $3 at Target), fat-free mozzarella, organic, fresh veggies and tomato sauce, and even splurged by adding a small amount of our favorite sharp imported cheeses from Whole Foods Market in the mix for a more distinct flavor.  Minced garlic, spices, and herbs such as fresh basil and oregano on top make it extra perfect.  

Making pizza at home is not only extremely economical, but it is a great way to use up your extra produce and cheeses that you do not want to go to waste.  Additionally, introducing new vegetables and ingredients to kids is far easier when doing so via a familiar favorite. 😉