Yes a kitty shower! Simone and Tom are taking the leap of adopting three kittens at once. Are they crazy? No they have fallen in love with the kittens from a litter belonging to a friend. They have decided to pour all their cat parenting love and experience into offering a home to three little mischief-makers.
I say you are courageous and very special people and I am therefore giving you a kitty shower to celebrate the beginning of a new phase in your lives!
And just so my readers know what cuteness is, here is a picture of the three little kittens that Simone and Tom are welcoming into their home and hearts today!
Since I have known that Simone and Tom are opting for three new family members, I have hummed around the house or in the car or at my desk one of my favorite Mother Goose nursery rhymes, remembered from my childhood and so often read and recited to my own child, my son Jasper soon to turn 16. It is so appropriate to bringing up children and kittens. It goes like this:
The Three Little Kittens
Three little kittens
They lost their mittens,
And they began to cry
Oh, Mother dear,
We sadly fear
Our mittens we have lost.
What! Lost your mittens,
You naughty kittens!
Then you shall have no pie.
Mee-ow, mee-ow, mee-ow.
No, you shall have no pie.
The three little kittens
They found their mittens,
And they began to cry,
Oh, Mother dear,
See here, see here,
For we have found our mitten.
Put on your mittens,
You silly kittens,
And you shall have some pie.
Purr-r, purr-r, purr-r,
Oh let us have some pie.
Courtesy of A Treasury of Mother Goose, Illustrated by Hilda Offen, Simone & Schuster 1984
Yes let us have some pie in honor of the kittens and their new parents! They are very lucky kittens indeed!!
Some Strawberry Blueberry Hazelnut Lattice Pie
Whereas the French and the Germans make sweeter crusts to go with fruit, the classic American pie crust is not sweet or flaky but simple and a little salty, maybe even bland but it leaves the leading role to the fruit filling inside.
So for you Simone, Tom and your three little kittens – here is your kitty shower pie!!
Strawberry Blueberry Hazelnut Lattice Pie
- 2.5 cups/350 grams flour
- ¼ tsp salt
- ¾ cup/175 grams of shortening: butter,
baking margarine which I used or similar
- 6-7 TBSP of cold water
- 1 pinch of cinnamon powder
Ingredients for the filling:
- 2 cups/250 grams of strawberries washed, stems removed, quartered
- 2 cups/250 grams of blueberries, washed and stems removed
- ½ cup sugar – more if you like it sweeter or your fruit is sour
- the seeds from 1 vanilla bean scraped out
- 4 grinds of fresh black pepper
- 2 pinches of cinnamon
- 3 TBSP of corn or other baking starch
- ½ cup of whole hazelnuts
- 2 TBSP butter
Putting it all together:
For the crust: mix the flour, salt and cinnamon on your baking board. Cut the butter/margarine into small pieces and sprinkle over the flour. Combine lightly with your fingers until the dough is course and crumbly. Sprinkle 1/3 of the water over the dough and mix and knead adding more water as needed – altogther I used a 1/2 cup of water. The pastry comes together well – knead it gently into a ball and let it rest.
Meanwhile heat your oven to 165°C/325°F and place the hazelnuts on a baking sheet. Roast them carefully until fragrant taking care they do you burn – max 8-10 minutes.
Remove from the oven and pour them onto a fresh dishtowel and cover them to cool.
After 2 minutes roll the nuts in the dishtowel back and forth to remove some of the brown skins. Do this a few more times. Then chop the nuts roughly with a knife into smaller pieces but not meal. Set aside.
Mix the fruit together and place it in a fine mesh sieve over a bowl to remove excess liquid or your pie will get soggy.
Transfer the fruit to a mxing bowl and add the sugar, vanilla, pepper, cinnamon and the cornstarch. Mix well but gently. Now add the chopped hazelnuts and mix again to combine.
Butter or grease your pie dish – I used a 9 inch Pyrex pie dish and preheat the oven to 210°C /425°F.
Take up the dough and cut off and set aside one third. Roll out the two-thirds thinly to cover the pie plate. Use a knife or scissors to cut off the overlapping dough so as to leave a rim of dough that just is slightly larger than the rim of the pie dish.
Knead your dough scraps with the remaining third of dough and roll out into a large circle as thick as the dough in the pie dish. Use a crimped pastry wheel to cut lattice strips.
Put the filling in the pie crust – if the fruit is runny you may want to sieve it again first.
Smooth the filling evenly in the crust.
Now take your lattice strips one at a time and place them over the dough starting on one side and working across spacing evenly – use every second strip. The strips will hang over the rim on either side
Now take the remaining strips one at a time and starting on the one side weaving the strips over and under the other place dough strip – lifting carefully over and under.
Place these strips with the same space in between as the first placed ones.
Now cut the overlapping strips so that they are even with the overlapping dough from the bottom crust and carefully roll and press together to make a crimped rim. If your rim is sloppy, use the leftover dough to crimp a thin strip to go all around the edge of the dough, place it and press lightly to stick.
Take your piece of butter and cut off little slivers of it and place a little sliver in each lattice square.
Bake in the oven at 210°C /425°F for 10 minutes then reduce the heat to 180°C/350°F and bake for a further 30-40 minutes until the crust is golden brown.
Remove from the oven and cool if you can resist. You can serve the pie “a la mode” with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. The pie tastes more intensive when cooled.
So Simone, Tom and the three little kittens – enjoy you pie and hip, hip hurrah to a wonderful new family life together – it sure won’t be dull and there will be lots of smiles, laughs and funny photographs!
P.S. I am so happy that this is my 100th yumandmore post!!