French Silk ‘n Satin Pie
or Nancy Genevieve’s Three-Year French Silk ‘n Satin Pie
History of this recipe:
As a professor and a poet, I am not usually asked for recipes. With one
exception. This recipe. This recipe literally took me three years to capture,
which friends from further north than my home state tell me is not surprising.
This story began back in the sixties while I was attending
the University of Kentucky (UK). I would return home for weekends and holidays
to western Kentucky, homesick for family and for food. Not just any food but
very specific western Kentucky foods: two in particular, pit smoked barbeque and
this pie. While I still return to western Kentucky for the barbeque and to visit
family, I can now make this pie anywhere I live.
When I came home the first time from UK, I asked Mama for the recipe and she
didn’t have it, neither did my grandmother or any of my five great aunts. But
there was a restaurant which served it.
So I asked the owner
to please share her recipe. She said she couldn’t that it was a pie which drew
customers. Since our families went back four generations, I promised if she gave
it to me, I would never share it with anyone; I would just fix it for my family.
She said she was sorry, but she “just couldn’t share it.”
So every time I went home, I went to this restaurant, bought
a piece of this pie and a cup of coffee, savored every bite of the dessert, and
went home and tried to make it.
The early pies I made left a lot to be desired. But my family
smiled and ate them anyway. Then slowly, recipe-change-by-recipe change, the pie
began to be good. Then after about three years, it began to be really good. Now
many decades later, my grown children request it for special occasions.
Why has it taken me so long to share this recipe in a public way? Well, the
restaurant changed hands and the woman who originally would not share her recipe
has passed, and so I think sharing it causes no harm. While I have given this
recipe to friends and family, this is the very first time I have shared it with
people I don’t know by their first names. I do hope you and your family enjoy
this as much as mine has.