Dear SOS: The City Restaurant in Los Angeles bakes the most delicious apple-cranberry pie that I have ever tasted. Not too sweet--just perfect.
Dear Blanche: Shade's of Mom's Midwest apple pie, and what a great treat for the holiday season. CITY RESTAURANT APPLE-CRANBERRY PIE
5 extra large Grannie Smith apples or equivalent
1 (12-ounce) package cranberries
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/4 cup minute tapioca
Partially Baked Pie Shell
Peel, core and chop apples in pieces the size of cranberries. Place cranberries in food processor. Chop briefly, about 10 seconds.
Combine apples and cranberries in large bowl. Add sugar and stir until fruit is coated with sugar. Cover bowl and set aside until juices from fruit flow freely and sugar is almost completely dissolved, about 15 to 20 minutes.
Stir tapioca into fruit and juice and let soak additional 10 to 15 minutes. Fill Partially Baked Pie Shell with apple-cranberry filling. Sprinkle top generously with Streusel. Reserve any remaining streusel for other use. Bake at 325 degrees until filling bubbles in center, about 45 minutes. (If edges of pie shell begin to brown too quickly, cover with strips of foil.) Makes 1 (9-inch) pie. Partially Baked Pie Shell
2 cups flour
1/2 cup lard
1/4 cup unsalted butter
1 teaspoon salt
Combine flour, lard, butter and salt in large bowl. Lightly work dough using fingertips until pieces of butter and lard are no larger than small peas. Add 1/3 cup ice water a little at a time, tossing flour mixture lightly with fork. If mixture seems too dry to press into ball, add another 1 tablespoon ice water.
Press mixture into ball. Wrap in plastic wrap and allow to rest about 30 minutes in refrigerator. Roll to 1/8-inch thickness. Fit into 10-inch pie plate. Flute edge attractively and let rest again in refrigerator 30 minutes. Line shell with sheet of foil filled with pastry weights or uncooked navy beans. Bake at 425 degrees until edges are light brown. Remove foil and weights. Return to oven until bottom crust is set and no longer appears raw. Streusel
2/3 cup unsalted butter
3/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 1/2 cups flour
Combine butter, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon and flour. Lightly work mixture using fingertips until butter is completely incorporated and mixture is crumbly.
Dear SOS: While visiting Oceanside in August, I happened upon a sinfully delicious macaroon called a haystack, but I'd call it diet-killer's heaven. Can you get the recipe?
Dear Pat: Haystack recipes are fairly standard, so here is one from Griswold's, in Claremont, which I hope you will find as heavenly as the ones tasted in Oceanside. GRISWOLD'S HAYSTACK
13 egg whites, lightly beaten
2 cups sugar
6 1/2 cups flaked coconut
1 1/2 cups chopped dates
1 cup chopped walnuts
1/2 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
Combine egg whites and sugar. Cook in top of double boiler over simmering water until mixture reaches 120 degrees or feels hot to touch. Stir constantly.
Combine coconut, dates, walnuts, salt and vanilla in mixing bowl. Add hot sugar mixture and blend well. Using small ice cream scoop, form into balls and place on lightly greased baking sheet. Bake at 350 degrees 20 minutes or until golden brown. Allow to cool and remove from pan. Makes about 3 dozen.
Dear SOS: Recently I visited the India festival of science at the California Museum of Science and Industry in Los Angeles and had lunch at the Indian restaurant operated by Beverly Hills' Bombay Palace. They served a meatless mixed vegetable curry which was delicious. Would it be possible to get the recipe?
Dear Andrea: It so happens that "The Bombay Palace Cookbook" by Stendahl (Caravan Publishing) has a recipe for nine vegetable curry served at the museum. BOMBAY PALACE NINE VEGETABLE CURRY
1/4 pound broccoli, cut into florets
1/4 pound green or sweet red peppers, cut into diamond shapes or small cubes
1/4 pound carrots, peeled, sliced and cut into diamond shapes or small cubes
1/4 pound cauliflower, cut into florets
1/4 pound green beans, sliced and cut into diamond shapes or small cubes
1 large potato, peeled, sliced and cut into diamond shapes or small cubes
2 tablespoons butter
1 large onion, minced
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 tomatoes, chopped
2 tablespoons yogurt
1/4 cup water
1/2 cup whipping cream
1/4 pound fresh or 1/2 frozen package green peas, thawed
1 (4-ounce) can mixed fruit cocktail, drained
1/4 cup raisins
12 slivered, blanched almonds
Separately cook broccoli, green pepper, carrot, cauliflower, green beans and potato in boiling salted water until crisp-tender. Drain. Set aside.
Melt butter in skillet. Add onion and garlic. Saute until onion is transparent. Add tomatoes, yogurt and Dry Masala. Simmer 5 minutes.