Saturday, October 1, 2011

It's been rigged!

Today was the Cobbler/Pie cook-off at our apartment complex! I decided to go with the Apple-Pear Praline Pie. I added my own twist by using a variety of mixed apples and pears. 100% homemade, down to the crust. Here is how it went down:


These ingredients...



made this ...










but, not until after our kitchen looked like this.






and here was the final product ...











With a grand prize of $150 off one month of rent on the line, we walked down to the coffee shop with high hopes.

As we waited patiently, enjoying our yummy pumpkin coffee drinks, we secretly kept eyes and ears on our pie as people walked by for viewings. 

We heard, "That looks like it needs to be on the Food Network." and "Oh my, I can't wait to give that a try!"

Naturally, we start to get a little giddy... all the while, I'm trying to remind myself to A) Remain humble  and B) If I don't win, it's ok. 

So the contest begins and a married couple steps up to judge the entries. The excitement is building and eventually they come around to announcing the winners. 

The second place winner was announced... an Apple Pie.

With my heart in my throat ... the first place winner was announced and it was the ... "Russian Tart?!"

WHAT?! Clay's first words.. "It was rigged." 

How can this be? Let's break it down shall we?

1st, this lady already won last year. 2nd, we were the "newbies" in a close knit group of people (including the judges). 3rd, there were only 2 judges! And they were married!

Does that sound like "unbiased" to you? 

After the contest, all pies, cobblers, and apparently TARTS, were subject to tasting by residents. So, being the good sports that we are ... Clay and I walked over to share in the sugar load. The first two on my plate were the TART and my Apple-Pear Praline PIE. Of course, with no intentions of comparing the two ... (cough). 

Let's just put it this way ... I had to make a conscious effort not to make a face when I tried the tart. I'm not kidding. I am all for giving credit when credit is due and am genuinely happy for others when they achieve something grand. But ladies and gentleman, not here. 

Most of the entries were mediocre, except for a mixed berry cobbler. I loved it! The crust was fantastic and berries cooked perfectly. 

The funny thing was, during the "public" tasting ... people were going back for seconds on our pie and verbally sharing their delight. On the up side, the recipe is a keeper, my confidence wasn't completely shattered, and Clay managed to repress his inner "unbiased" verbal commentary ...

until we left.

In conclusion, the saying for the day is "It was rigged." Are we bitter and did I want to shed a tear? No. Did we want to win to pay for a special surprise to be revealed to you in a few weeks? Yes. Did I lie about the first question? Maybe a little. 

Danielle Jones



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