There is something about consuming food on a stick that reminds me of being a kid. It takes me to times of reckless abandon, roller blading, scraped knees and an indifference to society's conventions. Over time I have evolved, likely we all have. Priorities have changed, and responsibilities have mounted. But with effort and an open mind, a pop of some sort can bring us back to simpler times.
I began working for a boutique caterer about two months ago. My writing schedule has been delayed, my balance a little off, but in lieu of dreaming and concepting, I have been earning and learning. In the learning part, dreams are still nurtured so overall the outcome is a positive one. It's been a full immersion into the world of running an off premise catering business. My boss imparts on me endless amounts of insight as she has ample experience. The lessons I learned in books at school don't often apply. Trial by fire is the only way to learn anything and learn it well. From work, I've drawn much inspiration as well. Delicate hors d'oeuvres, tricks of the trade, and rules of the kitchen. Surely it has been a short time and I have more to discover than I can even quantify, but I've always wondered what it might be like to work in an environment like this one, and I am leaping right in.
Over the weekend, I worked at an event for a young lady's birthday. The adults had an elevated menu and the kids had well, kids fare. Things you can pop in your mouth as you run about, chatting with friends, reapplying raspberry Smackers lip balm, straightening the tie your mom made you wear, and peering at the person you have a crush on. The DJ announced the guest of honor's entrance, and all the kids gathered around her. He said, "this is all for you. Everyone is here to celebrate you!" It sounds absurd, but I got rather emotional at this display.
I was reminded of times when little parties, exams, and Friday night football really consumed a majority of my time. Every exchange was so critical, every heartbreak a crushing one. The momentous times of the teenage years in the grand scheme of our lives might be trivial, but at that time they are everything. It is a selfish time, where we feel hyper aware of our surroundings and how we are received. Eventually, as maturity dictates we gain proper perspective. Before then, however, the wild highs and the crushing lows of being thirteen feel so all encompassing. Eventually things change as nothing is constant and our burdens and joys are transformed, but we will always know the fragility of being thirteen.
To prepare the pie pops
I took some leftover Cottage pie (beef, carrots, peas and the fixings) and turned them into a savory pie pop. While these days, my responsibilities are rent, student loans, and being attentive to family and friends in a considerable way, there is always a pie on the stick, to bring me back to Smackers Lip balm and school dances.
To prepare, roll out your pie crust on to a floured surface, ( I have a homemade buttery variation but pre-made should work), until 1/4 inch thick. Using a circle mold or the opening of a glass, cut your crust into circles. Arrange circles on parchment paper and top with about 1 tablespoon or desired filling. Place your lollipop stick amidst the filling. Rub your finger dipped in cold water around the edge of your pie, as a glue. Top each circle with another, and press gently to seal. Press down with a fork to further seal the edges. Refrigerate for 10-15 minutes until pies firm up again after being handled at room temperature. Bake at 375 degrees for 30-40 minutes or until desired brownness.