Easy Summer Pies

I took a two week hiatus from this here blog (my apologies folks) to enjoy some good old-fashioned family fun over the fourth, welcome some long-lost family members (step-daughter and husband) back into the grind and head out of town for a little vacation. We had the kids leave cell phones at home (after all, we didn't have that luxury growing up and they don't really need it right now either) and we drove about forty-five minutes to our destination where we stayed in a three-bedroom condo and did all the 'touristy' things in a town that I know like the back of my hand. It was a blast!

We watched cable TV (we only get our local channels at home - so pre-historic I know!), grilled, swam, bowled, rode down the alpine slide and the kids navigated a tricky 'adventure course' 30 feet off the ground. Hubby and I tried to relax a little (at least the best I could as a parent with four kids) but I find more solace grocery shopping alone these days than any family vacation and that says alot simply because grocery shopping used to be the bain of my existence. Oh how things change. 

And now back to the daily roasting - as in me running through my energy reserves quickly in the day with a house full of bored, hot and whiny kids. Oi vay. But now we are in full summer swing with grilling, fresh vegetables (corn on the cob anyone?) and one of our family favorites - yogurt pie. And what I love about this dish is that everyone absolutely loves it and it is the easiest thing you could possibly make! Seriously.
Summer Yogurt Pie
1 Tub Tru Whip (or Cool Whip - I just like the more natural version)
2 Fruit-Flavored Yogurts - we like raspberry (again, try to avoid high fructose corn syrup and the naughties)
1 Graham Cracker Pie Crust

Simply mix the Tru Whip and two yogurts together well in a large bowl and pour into the prepared graham cracker pie crust. Refrigerate until set and then mmmm.

Now, this time I actually made my pie crust because at two local, non-earthy grocery stores I stopped by I couldn't find a pre-made crust without high fructose corn syrup or partially hydrogenated oil in them. Sooo, I ground up some of my non-naughty list graham crackers that I already had on hand with a few vanilla animal crackers, stirred some melted butter and about 1/8 cup of Xagave into the crackers and then pressed the mixture into a 9-inch glass pie plate. I didn't bake it or even fridge it before pouring the filling inside. Apparently, it's the best crust they've ever had. Blush.

Another simple tasty pie, that I like to call 'Not-A-Cheesecake-Pie' is as follows:
1 Tub Tru Whip
1 Can Sweetened Condensed Milk
1/3 Cup Lemon Juice
1/2 tsp. Almond Extract

Optional: Top with fruit (mmmm, raspberries). I'm an almond extract fanatic which is why I adore this pie.

On this same Sunday afternoon, I also tried my hand and two home-made pizza's, a Tangy Bar-B-Que Chicken Pizza, and a regular pizza with Aidell's Apple Sausage on top that turned out phenomenal (everyone snarfed down the BBQ Chicken like it was their last meal)! I bought some pre-made dough at the store the day before and rolled it out on my bar pan. I made the sauce with organic ketchup, Pampered Chef Buffalo Bar-B-Que rub, apple cider vinegar, garlic and some salt and pepper. It was perfect. I took it from a pampered chef cookbook so I can't claim cleverness for that one. Topped it with chicken, olives, mozzarella and cheddar cheese, some red onions and a touch of cilantro. Super tasty and not too involved for home-made!

The second pizza we ad-hoced with 8 oz of tomato sauce, salt and pepper, garlic, italian seasoning and a touch of red pepper. We topped this with mozz and cheddar, the grilled and sliced sausage, olives, green peppers and onions.

Either way, my 18-monther couldn't shovel the pieces in fast enough... (notice the blurring hand racing to deliver pizza bite to mouth).

Here's to summer!


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