This weekend, we drove up to the mountains in North Carolina to visit my dad. We met up with him and went together to spend the afternoon with our old friends, Hawk and Ayal. I’ve known them since I was about six, when I began going to EARTH Camp in Todd, NC. They recently bought a huge, gorgeous house up in the mountains and are working on launching a retreat center there. The property was left in fantastic shape. The previous owners planted all kinds of lovely things and kept their wonderful projects going, including a grape arbor and bee hives. We were invited to pick as many grapes as we wanted, and between the two of us, my dad, and the four young people who had been staying there, we barely made a dent in the bounty.
I think we got a little carried away. We ate a few bunches, but that’s still a lot of grapes… So I looked up some recipes. I decided to make grape pie, which I had never heard of. It looked prety straightforward, so I gave it a try. I loosely followed this recipe, and the most challenging part was the “skinning”- it’s a simple process, but so time-consuming!
I ended up using a bit more grapes than what you see in the colander here, since the recipe calls for about four cups. I don’t think I ended up using quite four cups, but that’s about par for the course. I can’t follow a knitting pattern without adjusting as I go, and the same goes with recipes! I used slightly less sugar and slightly more lemon juice in the filling, so it ended up being a bit runnier than it probably was supposed to. Instead of buying a pie crust, I made a simple one and decided to make mini pies instead of a full-sized pie, in theory, to help with portion control. It usually means we snack more, but it’s always worth it.
The top is an almond flour crumb, which I also made up as I went. So basically, I didn’t follow the recipe at all. But these little babies are delicious. Tangy, sweet, crispy, goopy, just perfect. I can only imagine how insanely fabulous they would be, warmed up, with a little scoop of vanilla ice cream.