A bit of a splurge
Monday November 14th 2022, 10:28 pm
Filed under: Family,Food

They grow cherries. They know cherries. They’re in Michigan. (They decided to let their subscribers know they were cheering on Gov. Whitmer.) And everything I’ve ever bought from them (not that that has been a lot) has been good. Their cherry/fig/onion spread in a toasted cheese sandwich? You kind of have to smash it a bit to make it spreadable but trust me that sandwich is going to be good.

So I wondered if I could send my kids a warm cherry pie out of the oven to make Thanksgiving easier, as I looked at the picture in the catalog of their Mamma Mia’s sour cherry pie in a bottle.

I have bags of pitted sour cherries from my own tree sitting in my freezer, and I can tell you they make the best pies I’ve ever baked. But my children are not here.

There was only one way to know how the bottled ones could turn out.

The delivery. Richard opened the jar for me. I didn’t even make the crust¬†(sorry, Scott!) though I did roll it out super thin, the way I like it.

My mom made a lot of pies while I was growing up. She called it the one last chance in a meal to get nutrition down her kids, so we’re not talking chocolate cream here, we’re talking fruit.

Someone once asked her for her pear lime recipe and won a recipe contest with it–without mentioning it to Mom, but it got back to her because such things always do and I remember Mom being both irked at her friend’s rudeness and loving that Mom, really, was the one who had won that thing. Score!

Pistachio grape pie. Cherry. Peach! After our pick-your-own expeditions in the summers we kids would just be waiting for the best part of dinner.

When I was a freshman in college eating dorm cafeteria food, the vending machines in our basement sold Hostess fruit pies if you got to them soon enough after they were restocked.

Man, they were a sorry, sorry apology for my mom’s talents and my childhood, but I bought the cherry one. Twice during the year, though I tried more times than that. They were all sugar and cornstarch and goopy and no flavor and I always assumed the red was sheer food coloring. There was none of that tart cherry essence, no hint of almond, and I remember wondering if there were more than one or two cherries in the whole thing–probably not.

They were pricey on my student budget and they never satisfied.


The first bit glopped out of the jar onto the pie crust but most stayed right up inside there. I got a small spatula and started scooping.

There were a lot of cherries and also a lot of their juices cooked up into the food starch and that part was looking a lot like my dorm memories–I prepared myself to be disappointed.

And yet. The flavor! All that actual fruit! Cherries, definitely, almond, it’s there. I had the spatula all to myself afterwards. I reached back in the jar and got that very last little bit.

Baked? Cooled (some of it never got to) and once it finished setting up?

It’s not my tree’s sour cherry pie. But it’s definitely something I’d send to my kids for when they have too much that has to get readied to put on their plate.

3 Comments so far
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Sometimes, when you can’t do your own, close enough is good enough!

Comment by ccr in MA 11.15.22 @ 8:22 am

When it comes from Mom, that’s good enough!

Comment by Jayleen Hatmaker 11.15.22 @ 9:23 am

I remember really wanting those Hostess pies when I was a kid. They were the hot commodity in the trading wars at lunch. But my parents were frugal and I never got them. So I tried one as an adult, and, just like your experience, it was so disappointing. I can see why they appeal to children, but a real homemade pie is like an entirely different food product!

Comment by NGS 11.15.22 @ 9:26 am

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