friday feast: a taste of kate lebo’s pie school cookbook (+ apple pie recipe)

“The best way to make pie is to learn how to trust yourself and follow your nose — and the rest of your senses. That’s a poet’s advice too.” ~ Kate Lebo

Some of you may remember when Seattle pie poet Kate Lebo visited Alphabet Soup back in January to talk about A Commonplace Book of Pie (Chin Music Press, 2014) — a delightfully quirky collection of prose poems, recipes, baking tips and ephemera. *licks lips*

In essence a fantasy zodiac that upends our assumptions about what poetry is and can be, her pie poems invited us to look at ourselves, face our fears, and articulate our desires.

Now we can delve even further into our tantalizing pie obsessions with Kate’s brand new cookbook, Pie School: Lessons in Fruit, Flour, and Butter (Sasquatch Books, 2014), a between-the-covers sampling of her popular Pie School pastry academy classes. Oh, what a beauty it is!

Sure, there are many good pie cookbooks out there with tasty recipes and advice about how to fashion the perfectly tender flaky crust. But how many of these contain chapter intros and recipe header notes that read like prose poems? How many that serve up pie making process, social history, personal anecdotes, gorgeous photos, vintage chic, sass and class with such verve and heart?

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mom and apple pie, part one

  "In order to make an apple pie from scratch, you must first create the universe." ~ Carl Sagan


Everyone, please rise.

Apple pie has entered the room.

Sing or salute, if you like. It’s the patriotic thing to do. And if your mom is nearby, give her a hug.

 Apple pie = America.

It’s part of our collective consciousness — the place where food, emotions, memories, and idealism converge. Yet how did it come to symbolize so much — the prosperity of a nation, core family values, nostalgia for white-haired grandmas with rolling pins, the comfort of childhood and home in an age when families live splintered lives?

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