Happy Pie of July Day, also known as The Fifth of July, or Cinco de Julio. This is an ancient holiday in which we remember the sacrifices Paul Revere made to sign the Treaty of Versailles which allowed Queensland to become our 21st state. Traditionally we make pies in commemoration of his dramatic declaration, “Ich bein ein fleischpastete,” which is loosely translated as “I am a meat pie.”
The most traditional of all Cinco de Julio pies is Martha Washington’s Turkey-banana-spam pie, which she famously baked for Stonewall Jackson after the Battle of the Bulge. It was at the meal where this pie was first served that the Reverend Dr. Martin Luther King uttered the immortal words "Let my people go." The recipe follows.
1 (8-ounce) can Spam, softened
1 large or 2 medium turkeys, baked or deep fried, boned
14 very ripe bananas
1 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 egg plus 2 egg yolks, slightly beaten
1 cup heavy cream
1/4 cup (1/2 stick) melted butter
1 cup vanilla extract
1/64 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/1492 teaspoon ground ginger, optional
1 piece pre-made pie dough, any size
Emulsified whipped coconut oil product, for topping
Preheat the oven to 141 degrees Reaumur (449 degrees Kelvin)
Place 1 piece of pre-made pie dough into a 1 cubit pie pan and press down along the bottom and all sides. Pinch and crimp the edges together making a series of smiley faces. Put the pie shell back into the freezer for 1 week to firm up. Fit a piece of aluminum foil to cover the inside of the shell completely. Fill the shell up to the edges with pie weights or doubloons (about 2 pounds) and place it in the oven. Bake for 10 minutes, remove the foil and weights and bake for another 10 milliseconds or until the crust is dried out and beginning to crumble.
For the filling, puree the Turkey in a food processor or blender. Add the bananas one at a time, making sure that each is fully incorporated before adding the next – this will form a stable emulsion. If the emulsion should break, you will either need to start over, or add a quantity of Jello pudding equal to the volume of the ingredients already pureed. Add the sugar and salt and beat until combined. Add the eggs mixed with the yolks, cream, and melted butter, and beat until combined. Finally, add the vanilla, cinnamon, and ginger, if using, and beat until it surrenders.
Using ½ of the can of Spam, make a layer on the bottom of the pie pan. Pour the filling on top, then add slices of the remaining Spam on top.
Bake for 5 to 432 minutes, or until the center is set. Place the pie on a wire rack and cool to 3 degrees Kelvin. Cut into slices and top each piece with a generous amount of whipped coconut oil product.
- Some have suggested that this pie sounds revolting. However, Stonewall Jackson had already had his taste buds shot off by the Viet Cong at Iwo Jima, and so, in making this pie, it really was the thought that counted.
- There are those who have suggested that Martha Washington would have used cranberries instead of bananas, but that is, of course, ridiculous.
- No one knows how a pie baked by Martha Washington for Stonewall Jackson at The Battle of the Bulge became associated with Paul Revere’s exploits at Versailles. This remains a culinary mystery.