The snow is coming down now.
As I sit here with the purging white blanket falling around me, I have been reminiscing the days of my first CSAs. I remember the early season share boxes starting slow and pleasant. As the CSA season kicks in, influxes of veggies would arrive and I’d quickly get overwhelmed. Several would start to rot on my counter or in the back of my fridge before I could eat them. Some would wind up in the swap box. The whirlwind would continue as veggie after delicious veggie came and went, and I just tried my best to keep up. Then, as quick as it began, the CSA season would end and I’d be left walking like a zombie through the supermarket, completely forgetting how to shop, missing those wasted veggies, and looking forward to the next CSA to start. I’d end each season wallowing in the winter doldrums and vowing that next season, things would be different. I am most grateful to say that years later, things are different.
Today I welcome the influx of veggies, knowing that I can preserve and save those that I’m not ready to use at that moment. Today, Winter and Spring shares are available to keep the cooler seasons from feeling like the aforementioned doldrums they once were. Things are different.
Yesterday as I watched people filling their supermarket carts in a panic to weather the storm, I was feeling so grateful for my pantry full of delicious Springdell goodness. I blew through the express lane with a few menial items as the lines for the regular checkouts wound back through the aisles. Life is good.
So back to the recipe…
I had some potatoes and was thinking about a conversation that Sarah and I had about her boys not being into potatoes. When thumbing through a cookbook at my Grandma’s house entitled “All Maine Cooking” from 50+ years ago, I had found an intriguing recipe for Potato Pie that was submitted by a Ms. Hanscom from Newry, Maine. As with many old style recipes, there weren’t really specifics, and the whole recipe from start to finish was 3 sentences. The recipe instructs to “cook until the pie is set”, but gives no temperatures or general times. The recipe also called for “sweet milk”. (Back in the day, when sour milk or buttermilk was more commonly present in daily household use, whole milk was called sweet milk. Who knew?) I took the liberty of updating the recipe to what I think Ms. Hanscom was trying to convey to a more intuitive generation of cooks. Hopefully I’m not too far off the mark, but either way, it turned out delicious and can only get better! It was a nice blend of sweet and savory, reminiscent of tapioca or rice pudding. I topped it with nutmeg but lemon is another option. All four of our boys had some!
- 1 generous cup potato, boiled and mashed through a sieve (a ricer would work, too)
- 3 cups of whole milk
- 1 tablespoon of butter
- 2 eggs, slightly beaten
- 2/3 cups sugar
- nutmeg or lemon
- Mix ingredients until well combined.
- Bake at 425 for 15 minutes, then drop to 350 for another 40-60 minutes until the pie starts to "set"
- Sprinkle with nutmeg (or lemon per Ms. Hanscom's alternate suggestion)
- The original recipe calls for a crust, which I left out due to the gluten factor. Though the pie was a little moist on the bottom, I did not miss the crust and will make it the same again.
- I recommend serving with freshly whipped cream!