Never again make pumpkin pie!!

So for the first time Cooks Illustrated has done me wrong.

Seriously, this is a big blow to my ego as a cook and to my self-esteem overall. Plus I am DEAD Tired!!  1:48 a.m. and my pie doesn’t seem nearly done, it has been cooking. And cooking, and cooking. It just won’t set!  Generally Cooks Illustrated recipes are pretty foolproof for me. I have never had a problem with one. And in the case of this particular recipe – for Pumpkin Pie, I actually saw the video on America’s Test Kitchen and really thought I’d be able to do this one without a problem.

Who knew that having a small, and not a large, fine mesh strainer would do me in?

I have no idea if this is the culprit or not, but I was so tired by about 11pm (after working on the pie crust and another recipe for the past three hours) that I asked T to finish the straining.  You see, the ATK recipe has a section where they tell you to first cook the pie filling, then whisk in the creamy ingredients. Then you have to shove the whole thing through a strainer. Little did I know that this process alone would take over an hour!  The stuff was just too thick to go through, and I doubt that I’d have been any faster than T.  I really wish that they had provided some warning that if the strainer is small you will risk cooling all the ingredients and thus will have to really increase cook time. At this point I am just praying that the pie will turn out at all. After par-baking a most beautiful crust now I am afraid that it will be doomed to sogginess. And I have been working so hard to organize the Christmas meal.

On Saturday we are cooking up a 13 pound turkey. I’ve cooked a few turkeys before but what always gets me is – again – cook time. Per a recipe I’ll cook the turkey for 4 hours or so to temperature, and it never completes. Brining, seasoning, whatever, it always gets messed up.  This year I really want to get it right. Hence baking the baked goods NOT on the day of.  I’d prefer that the Bird gets first preference in the oven and goes in earlier in the morning.

Here’s hoping that my pie is finally reaching a 175 degree internal temperature. Last I checked it wouldn’t budge past 155. Good God this is a painful process!

And I’d love to write about all the other adventures. I do also want to post up pics from the showers. At least we finally got the clothing somewhat sorted into different age groups. T and I still have a bunch of stuff we have to buy – including an Arm’s Reach Mini or a Pack ‘N’ Play, onesies and stuff.

Ah, alarm went off on the pie.

168 degrees. Hopefully another 5 minutes will do. Then I give up.

I haven’t slept more than 6 hours a night for the past few days – with Christmas shopping, maternity classes, work, house organizing I definitely feel a bit overwhelmed. I guess that sitting here gives me time to put together a few things – like making a holiday CD to take to my parents’ and load onto their ipod.  So now I know what to do with the remaining 5 minutes of torture!!!