Don't know if you saw the sign at the Market last week, but it contained two magic words: "pie" and "contest."
No way! Bellevue Farmers Market's 1st Annual Apple Pie Baking Contest??? Whole novels and movies are based on this scenario: the modest baker who enters a baking contest on a whim and becomes rich and famous. This could your shot at stardom, people. Or, at least, bragging rights. There's even a category for "Best Presentation," like a beauty contest for pies. Your pie might be gorgeous but with a terrible personality, and it can still win. Or, it might be homely but radiate inner beauty in the "'Tried and True' Apple" or "'Anything Goes' Apple" categories. Or, you might have baked the pie-to-end-all-pies, a winner in both the beauty and the taste contest.
You do need to pre-register for the October 13th showdown here, a rule designed to prevent the unscrupulous among us from buying a last-minute prize-winner over at the Adrienne's Cakes & Pies table and presenting it to the judges. This means you should sign up and buy your apples this week, so you're ready to go.
Ask our farmers which are their favorite varieties for baking!
I should mention that first prize winners could walk away with $30 Market gift certificates, but we all know it's about the glory.
Not to give away my game, but I hold the firm opinion that the best pie crust can be found in the good old Bellevue Farmers Market Cookbook. That would be Joyce's Never-Fail Pie Crust on page 71. And I should know -- ever since Joyce passed her recipe on to our family, we have made no other kind of crust, and it was I who submitted it to the cookbook to share the wealth.
Keep in mind as well, that "Anything Goes" contest category. The Market abounds with creative possible additions to apple pie, both sweet and savory.
There was one question the Market FAQ didn't answer about the Contest: is it too late to be chosen as a judge? My recommendation: if you'd like to be a judge at the 2nd Annual Apple Pie Baking Contest, volunteer as a Marketeer next season! You can, however, wheedle little tastes of pie from all the bakers because they each get to take 7/8 of their creations home afterward.