Easter, Genetics, and Pie

Easter, Genetics, and Pie

Easter in south Louisiana is a time of family gatherings and traditions. It’s common for a home to be filled with generations gathered around a table over a delicious meal. Not only do we pass down our favorite recipes from one generation to the next, but we also pass down genetic information.

Knowing your genetic history can be important to your health. Genetics is the study of heredity, the process in which parents pass certain genes onto their children. Woman’s genetic counselors can help you understand your genetic risks for certain diseases, such as cancer. Genetic counseling can lead to the earliest detection of diseases. If you are concerned about diseases that run in your family, talk to you doctor about genetic counseling.

Easter weekend will be my annual family reunion and crawfish boil. The majority of the family attending are connected through my maternal grandmother. She was known for her desserts and I have many of her hand-written recipes. Most of my family have never tasted her baking, so this year I’m bringing her chess pie. I imagine she used to bake this extra sweet, egg-custard pie for her family for Easter.

Her hand-written recipe just lists the ingredients on a small stained scrap of paper, now yellowed and brittle with age. I looked up the cooking details from several cookbooks.

Maw Maw's hand-written recipe

The hand-written recipe, circa 1940

Maw Maw’s Chess Pie
1 cup sugar
3 eggs
2 teaspoon butter (unsalted)
1 cup milk
2 teaspoons flour
2 teaspoons corn meal
Pinch of salt
1 teaspoon vanilla
9” pie shell

Crust: (I buy ready made though I’m sure my Maw Maw made her own.) Preheat oven to 300°. Prick bottom of shell several times with fork. Add mixture of sugar and flour and rub into the holes. Bake shell for 10 minutes. This keeps shell from becoming soggy.

Filling: Mix flour and corn meal. Add softened butter, beaten eggs, vanilla, salt and sugar. Mix well. Slowly pour in milk. Mix until blended. Pour filling into pie shell.

Bake at 350° for 45 minutes or until set.

Goes well with vanilla ice cream (but what pie doesn’t).

I’m the new Living with Cancer blog editor. My name is Connie and I work in Woman’s Marketing Department. Follow this blog and our posts will arrive in your email.

We are always looking for stories related to your cancer journey. If cancer has touched your life and you would like to write about your story, let me know. Email me at webmaster@womans.org

Leave a Reply