Peach Pie in Translation

My friend Amelia’s blog, Bon Appetempt, “tackles semi-ridiculous to outright ridiculous gourmet and/or seemingly intense recipes, despite my novice skill set and average-at-best collection of kitchen appliances and cooking tools.” At least that was the original mission. As time as gone one she’s become a pretty excellent baker and cook and developed a real love for the whole process.

This week I took on the challenge of a guest attempt with Hub City’s own Liz Blanchard of Cake Head. It began over a discussion of a peach pie that Liz thought “went wrong.” I told her about Amelia’s blog and she loved it. Early last week we got together to collaborate.

The first part of the blog is posted here, skip over to Bon Appetempt to view the rest, which includes  a shout out to Bellews and the recipe to the perfect peach pie.

From my post at Bon Appetempt

Amelia and I took a Writer as Translator Workshop with the beautiful Malena Morling. On her syllabus she offered this quote by Octavio Paz: “Translation is an art of analogy, the art of finding correspondences. An art of shadows and echoes…” We spent a lot of time talking about the aim of translation and that when we approached translating a poem we had to consider whether we were creating a version or an imitation.

“When I tell bakers that I want to make a good peach pie they always say, why don’t you just make a cobbler,” Liz Blanchard said as we divided up our peach pie attempt. Previous to this baking experience, I hadn’t thought much about the triumphs and travails of peach pie. I always thought peach pie was exceedingly delicious and occasionally soggy. I accepted it for what it was not realizing that the pie could achieve much more.

I have a sort of haphazard approach to baking. I blame some of that on my grandmother who, when teaching me to make Struffoli told me to mix the dough until “it feels like this” and the rest on my general impatience. I love the act of baking, but when things seem to be going wrong, or there’s a problem that I don’t know how to solve, I take the good-enough approach. I never consider from the onset whether I’m making a version or an imitation, just that I want what’s in the cookbook to manifest into a cookie and for the cookie to taste good.

Liz, on the other hand, is a professional. Her business, Cake Head, is of local fame here in Spartanburg, SC. I’ve only been here for a few weeks but when I hear the word birthday I also hear Liz’s name. Cupcakes seem to be married to her as well, as do fried pies and other amazing confections. Not only does her stuff look beautiful, the taste of it really does render people speechless. It’s like waking up: “what have I been eating my whole life?”

For the rest of the post click here!

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Filed under Artists-in-Residence, Corinne Manning (10-11)

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