Sunday, February 17, 2013

Cherry Pie

Every year when February rolls around, I get a craving for cherry pie.  The reason?  Thanks to the good old McGuffey Reader's inclusion of biographer Mason Locke Weems' anecdote about six-year-old George Washington damaging his father's cherry tree with his little hatchet and then owning up to his misdeed ("I cannot tell a lie, father, you know I cannot tell a lie!"), my mom associated cherries with George Washington and baked a cherry pie every February to celebrate his birthday. Whether the story is true or not makes no difference to me--what matters is that it led to an extra cherry pie each year, and cherry was my favorite kind of pie; in fact, it was my favorite dessert, period.  The only other time we had it was when I requested it as my "good report card" treat, which I did, regularly, but my three siblings all chose apple dumplings, so we ate apple dumplings a lot more often than cherry pie.  The kind of cherry pie I'm talking about is made with tart cherries, not with canned cherry pie filling.  And my mom's cherry pies always had a lattice top made with strips of pie crust cut with a little zig-zag pastry wheel.  Unfortunately, my fondness for cherry pie didn't rub off on any of my kids.  In fact, for most of their growing-up years, my kids weren't pie eaters at all.  So lots of Februaries came and went with no cherry pie for me (unless my mom happened to be visiting!).  I am happy to report, however, that all three of my kids like pie now.  And although my daughter's favorite pie is apple, she also likes cherry.  And she's home this weekend.  And it's President's Day Eve.  So tonight we are having cherry pie, by George!

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