It was a Christmas miracle.
I made a pie crust. A fairly decent pie crust. It was my first — the one bake I have been avoiding for decades.
I’m just sorry my mom wasn’t here to see it. She made perfect pie crusts and never really understood why I was so intimidated by it.
The small irony is I didn’t actually make a pie. What I craved were the cinnamon pinwheels my mom used to make with her leftover dough. I loved them and there were never enough.
I used the entire pie recipe and made pans and pans of them, perfect for munching.
Of course, they don’t taste the same as my mom’s, but they were close enough to warrant a second batch — so technically I made two pie crusts. I am still amazed.
Jumping into a tricky bake is much easier when you have nothing to lose. I wasn’t baking for anyone else. No one else in my house fancies the pinwheels. And of course, I burned some of the first batch. No worries. It was all part of the big experiment.
I have had a bad habit, over the years, of trying to cook things I’ve never cooked before, with use as a gift in mind. Bad plan.
I watched my mom make fudge year after year and figured it was doable. Nope. I tossed three batches before I gave it a pass and made the boyfriend some easy cookies. I haven’t tried it since.
Armed with my pie confidence, maybe this is the year.
So, stocked with a bag of pinwheels, my favorite chocolates and a pizza, I went to ground for New Year’s Eve. My daughter had planned a party for her 30-something friends and I wanted to be as scarce as possible.
I prepared for the apocalypse and laid low, munching happily and watched movies late into the night.
May you all munch happily into 2023.
Jean Gillette is a freelance writer who will search for the perfect soft-ball temperature in 2023.