Today, I am bringing you a very special pie, for many reasons. For one, it is one of my mother’s favorite pies to make and one of my favorite pies for her to make for me! Another is the personal story behind this pie, which does get a bit depressing. So much so that I am actually putting it at the bottom of this post instead of at the top.
For now, lets just talk about the pie. This is one of the classic “impossible” pies which Bisquick came out with.
Now, I’m not a Bisquick fan. I actually use Pioneer brand baking mix whenever a recipe calls for Bisquick. Why? Its simple: The packaging. The messy cardboard box with the tear open lid has long been left in the dust by the canister style box with the sealing plastic lid. With others, you either have to transplant the entire contents, try to stick the box into a large plastic bag, or just deal with this open box of powdery mess being knocked over repeatedly every time you have to reach for something near it ( My y pantry is not a safe place at times). Pioneer never looked so good. There are also come great recipes on the web for homemade baking mix, and I am determined to try them first chance I get!
Want to know the really cool thing about this pie? You actually mix it up in your blender! With the baking mix working its magic to make the crust as it bakes, this is a great pie to let your little ones help with so they can call it their own. Just toss the ingredients in the blender and let little fingers push the buttons while you hold the lid on!
My mother did this tutorial and as you can see, she does use Bisquick! I need to buy her some more Pioneer today…
- 2 Cups milk
- ¾ Cup sugar
- ½ Cup Baking mix
- 4 eggs
- ¼ Cup butter or margarine
- 1½ teaspoons vanilla
- 1 Cup shredded coconut
- Put everything except for the coconut into the blender. Mix on low speed for three minutes. Pour into greased pie plate. Let rest for five minutes. Sprinkle coconut on top. Bake at 350 for forty minutes.
And now the story behind this pie:
Y’all know how I am. If there is a story attached to a particular recipe, I have to share it. With that in mind, I do hope you’ll forgive the fact that this particular recipe has a rather depressing story which goes along with it.
You see, this is my favorite pie that Mama makes me. I have never actually made this pie myself, because Mama makes it for me. She doesn’t make it for my sister or my brother, or even my dad, she makes it for me.
This is exactly what she was doing when I was a month away from my daughter being born. I dropped my son off at preschool and then went to visit with Mama a bit. As I got there, she was making this pie for me as a little surprise. She had arranged to go to the Aquarium in Chattanooga later that day with my sister and nephew and wanted to make this before she left so I could take it home. We visited a bit, had a slice of pie, and then both got on with our day.
Later that afternoon I got a phone call from my grandmother.
“Christy, have you heard about Jan?”
“No, I haven’t heard anything about Mama, why?”
“She’s been in a real bad wreck, they don’t know if she’s gonna live or not, she’s trapped in the car.”
My grandmother’s voice sounded strange, as if she wasn’t fully aware of the magnitute of what she was saying.
“Alright Grandmama, I’ll find out what is going on and I’ll call you.”
I stayed calm and managed to get my father and then even my mother on her cell phone. They hadn’t started cutting her out of the car yet and she was already calling me to see if I could be at the hospital when they arrived to look after my nephew since she and my sister would be with the doctors.
It was a long ambulance drive from Scottsboro to Huntsville and I was there waiting when they arrived. My nephew had a few bruises and was pretty shook up, but fine. My sister was fine as well, both were released that day.
Mama was a different story. As a car had swerved, likely from a driver falling asleep, it had hit the front tire of my sister’s small SUV. Most cars would have been fine with such a minor impact, but this was your typical top heavy SUV. As she swerved, it began to tip…and eventually flipping an estimated five times, the length of a football field. My mother’s door came open during this and her legs had been outside of the vehicle during the flipping (I’m really not making you want to make this pie, am I?).
Her legs were broken in five different places. After a harrowing 24 hours in Huntsville Hospital in which they actually “forgot her”, I finally spoke up to the nurses and they realized that the doctor who had been scheduled to perform surgery on her legs a few short hours after she had arrived had actually clocked out and gone on vacation instead.
A wonderful doctor, Lebert, stepped in and worked alongside another surgeon to have Mama’s legs filled with the needed plates and screws in order to restore them. It had been over twenty four hours, but her surgery was done in about an hour thanks to these two surgeons who stepped in.
After two days spent almost entirely at the hospital, I came home to find this pie still in my refrigerator and ate a slice, grateful that the woman who made it was still alive.
On a sidenote: Huntsville Hospital is filled with wonderful people. They have doctors and nurses and many other staff members who are dedicated and truly care about everyone who walks through those doors. However, it’s a big hospital and patients get lost in the shuffle sometimes. IF you have to go there (or any other large hospital), do everything possible to have an advocate with you.
Long story short, after a few months of extensive physical therapy, Mama could walk again. There was a time when we weren’t sure that was going to happen. We have all been left with a new gratitude towards life and a realization of how quickly it can change – and one more reason that this pie is so special to me.Yum