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Crevolyn Wiley: Celebrate Pi Day with some mouth-watering pie
Crevolyn Wiley columnist

The month of March has a lot to offer: Daylight saving time; basketball madness; St. Patrick’s Day; the first day of spring; and today, March 14. It’s National Pi Day! 3.14 — get it? Pi: 3.14; a mathematical constant defined as the ratio of a circle’s circumference to its diameter. My sincere thanks to Google for that definition because I wouldn’t have come up with it on my own.  

German Chocolate Pie

Ingredients:

  • 1 package (4 ounce) Baker’s Sweet German Chocolate
  • ¼ cup butter
  • 1 2/3 cups evaporated milk
  • 1 ½ cups sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 1/3 cups shredded coconut
  • ½ cup chopped pecans
  • 1 unbaked 9-inch deep dish pie shell

Directions:  

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Melt chocolate with butter in a medium saucepan over low heat; stirring until blended. Remove from heat and gradually blend in milk. Mix together sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in eggs and vanilla; gradually add to chocolate mixture. Pour chocolate mixture into pie shell. Mix together coconut and pecans; sprinkle over filling. Bake for 45 minutes or until top is puffed. The filling will be soft but will set while cooling. Cool at least four hours before serving.


Vidalia Onion Pie

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons butter
  • 3 cups thinly sliced Vidalia onions
  • 1 (9-inch) deep-dish pie shell, baked
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup milk
  • 1 ½ cups sour cream
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 4 slices, bacon, cooked crisp and crumbled

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees. In a medium saucepan, melt the butter over medium heat. Add the onions and sauté until lightly browned. Put the pie pan on a sheet pan. Line the bottom of pie crust with the onions.  In a small bowl, beat the eggs and the flour together to combine. Add the milk, sour cream and salt. Mix well and pour over the onions. Garnish with the bacon and bake until firm in the center, about 30 minutes. Transfer to a serving platter and serve.

I can’t imagine a better way to celebrate National Pi day than with pie. Pie: a delicious treat traditionally baked in a round dish featuring flaky pastry with delectable and mouthwatering fillings. That is my definition; no Google needed. 

Because pie is round and pi has something to do with circles, it is a perfect fit. Therefore, pie is educational. Let it be noted: eating is learning. 

Something interesting struck me when I looked at the definition for pi. It is referred to as a mathematical constant. A mathematical constant is a number which has special meaning for calculations. Interestingly, pie was a constant during my childhood and holds such special meaning for me.   

Every Saturday, without fail, my maternal grandmother would bake pies of all flavors. She would give them to family and friends but always reserve a couple to take to church the next day.  Seems there was always a “dinner on the grounds,” where her contribution to the dessert table was much appreciated. Every time I bake a pie I think of her.

Today, I’ve included both a sweet and savory pie recipe. If you’re like me, you might be counting down the days until the first Vidalia onions start rolling in, hopefully around the first of April. The Vidalia Onion Pie is the perfect side dish for so many suppers. This German Chocolate Pie is also incredible.  It takes all of the great things about the cake and puts it into pie form. Happy Pi(e) Day!   


Crevolyn Wiley is a Gainesville resident with her first published cookbook “Cooking with Crevolyn” available at J&J Foods. She can be contacted at crevolyn.wiley@jandjfoods.com.

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