The Traveling Blueberry Pie

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The Traveling Blueberry Pie, Thanks Café Hon!
By Bernadette A. Moyer

blueberry pie

I won! I won! I won a blueberry pie from Café Hon. Denise Whiting (the owner) was so excited when she called to tell me. It was a Facebook contest and I was the lucky “like” number to win it.

Café’ Hon is located in Baltimore City and in one of my favorite city neighborhoods Hampden. There is a real sense of community there and the houses remind me of the row houses from where I grew up In Allentown, Pennsylvania. There are lots of brick houses with large front porches. It is a community where residents walk to school to their places of worship to the grocery stores and to restaurants and small boutique businesses.

At Christmastime people from all over flock to 36th Street to view the entire street of beautifully well-lit decorated houses. The shops in the area are typically owned by individual shopkeepers, truly small unique retail and restaurants with their own unique offerings. There is a “Hon” Festival (it’s a Baltimore thing) that takes place every summer. Remember mom’s beehive hairdo, lots of that and more …

Anyway back to the pie. It was Lent and I was failing miserable at keeping with my giving up sweets and then comes this pie. So what to do with it? At first I thought about donating it to a shelter but it seemed kind of rude not to go get it and I hadn’t been in the area for a while so I wanted to revisit it. I thought about having lunch there to show my appreciation but I was alone and then thought I will wait and return with my husband. We have eaten there in the past and it was always good home style food.

Many years ago when I was a Realtor I had two neighboring properties with multi-family units inside listed and it was nice to see they had been renovated. And nice to see how clean all the streets were.

I picked up the pie myself and it was beautifully wrapped and waiting for me with my name on it. The restaurant was as welcoming and charming as I remembered. You can’t miss it as it has a big pink flamingo just outside. My husband likes their meatloaf platter and I love the French fries with gravy and the crab soup. If you are interested check them out Café Hon at 1002W. 36th Street Baltimore Maryland 21211 or by phone 410 243-1230 and website cafehon.com

So now what to do with this pie …

I decided to stop at the store and pick up some to-go containers as I was going to cut it up and share it with as many people as I could. The next day I was having lunch with a Priest friend to celebrate his 45th birthday and of course I showed up with his slice of blueberry pie. Then I dropped off a slice for an elderly female friend who doesn’t get out much and lives in a high rise. I sent my husband to work with a slice for himself and an extra piece to give to a favorite co-worker. Our son had one or two pieces and I enjoyed a slice myself. So the pie went to several locations and was enjoyed by many. It truly was a traveling pie!

Thanks Denise Whiting and Café Hon! We will be back soon for some good home style food …

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

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For the Love of Pie

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For the Love of Pie
By Bernadette A Moyer

Apple_pie

Who doesn’t like pie? Sweet banana cream pie, classic apple pie, peace crumb pie and savory chicken pot pie just to name a few. I am known for my mile high apple pie and classic pumpkin pie.

Recently after a trip to the Finger Lakes in upstate New York where they are known for their grapes and wineries I had to try the local grape pie. It was made from concord grapes with a crumb topping and pretty good! Of course my husband was like I’m not trying “grape jelly pie.” His loss.

“We must have a pie. Stress cannot exist in the presence of a pie.” David Mamet

When I was just a little kid we lived on a farm that was once an orchard and we had apple trees, peach trees and a cherry tree. Mom would hand us that classic old fashioned wire fold up basket to go pick our own fruits and she would make us individual pies.

It may seem decadent today but life on the farm was simple and fruit trees grew fruit in abundance. Pie was just one answer to all that fruit so was canning and making homemade jelly and jams. We loved our fruit trees but Mom and her pie was always a welcome treat.

As an adult I often celebrated George Washington’s birthday by baking my own cherry pies, harvest season meant many pumpkin and apple pies and in the summer I love making peach pies and blueberry pie. To me there are two important components to a truly great pie. You need a nice flaky crust and a wonderful filling. I love fresh fruit pies.

The Amish are known for their pies and for their Shoofly pie. Traditionally they come in either wet or dry bottom. Since I am the only family member that enjoys them I do buy a slice when I visit Lancaster, PA and my choice is the wet bottom version.

As a teenager I worked in a restaurant/diner where when you walked through the front door you were greeted by a revolving glass pie case. They had onsite baking and made wonderful pies. One of the most popular was a fresh strawberry pie.

My husband is known for saying, “in business, do one thing and do it really well.” We had this experience at Monica’s pies in Naples, New York just a few days ago. That is all they do really great pies, all the fruit pies and chicken pot pie. Monica’s pies are well known and she was once featured on the food network however, they no longer ship their pies. You can stop in and buy their pie or enjoy a slice at the many area eateries who serve them. I do recommend the concord grape pie if for no other reason that eat local when you visit!

In the summer season with so many wonderful fruits and the fall with apples I do go into pie making mode. I could see myself like Monica with a little pie shop and a sign on the door that reads, “ring bell for service” Monica appears in full apron as she is making pie until it is time to sell her assorted pies.

I left her shop inspired to try to make my first ever concord grape pie and a chicken pot pie. I also plan to make many more pies. Who doesn’t like pie? There is virtually a variety for every taste. So here is to lots more pie making, pie eating and pie enjoying.

Pumpkin pie, apple pie, pecan pie all are favorites for the Thanksgiving holiday. So go ahead and make a homemade pie or buy a pie and support a pie maker!

Bernadette on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/bernadetteamoyer

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