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On Giving Up: Contemplating the profound meaningfulness of pie day

Pies are ready for Pie Day at Timbrook Kitchens in Munster, Indiana.

I gave up chocolate for Lent and it has not gone too badly. I inadvertently slipped up when I was presented with a paczki gift long after Ash Wednesday and it turned out to contain a chocolate cream filling. Also, I have been trying to go meatless in general, on Friday in particular, which has not been mistake-free either but both challenges have made me more conscientious about eating in a general way. (It helps the cause that this eating regimen coincides with dropping a few layers of clothes this week past.)

Pies I Have Known and Loved: This is a roundabout way to explain that we are celebrating pie day in our office tomorrow and so far I am unaware of a chocolate pie on the roster though there are definitely some enchanting ingredients listed so far. I am bringing my personal favorite from Timbrook Kitchens in Munster---a key lime pie. Key lime is a weakness that I share with many I’m sure, though it has become less popular in some places. (For instance, I attribute the fact that there was no key lime pie on the menu in any restaurant I went to in Naples, Florida to an over-saturation of the flavor in yogurt products. The flavor, as a brand, has been relentlessly diluted, diffused and plundered in recent years.) Other pies that will be coming to our office include coconut cream, cherry, deluxe apple and cherry cream cheese. There was a pecan pie out there but it has been changed to fruit, so pecan is open. Pecan would be my second favorite pie. I sincerely wish there was cure for pie mania, but I suspect it is a chronic condition. Chicago Sun-Times columnist Neal Steinberg, who lost 20 pounds in a year by giving up pastry, cookies, cake and other desserts, still held on to pie. Because as he wrote at the time, “What is life without pie?” Amen brother.

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In Other Eating News: I am probably the only person living and working in Northwest Indiana, who had never eaten barbecue in Munster at one of several outstanding and amazing restaurants now open here….until this week. True and Bombers are at the top of the list and my observation is simple. Just try it. Probably best to give it a shot at midday, that way you won’t have to eat again until the following morning because you will be full on one normal-sized sandwich. I swear. But now that I have adjusted to the idea of occasional barbecue, I know that I have to try a Friday fish sandwich at one of these pork specialty kitchens. I recently read a description of the best fish sandwich ever that the writer had eaten many years ago in New Orleans that I cannot get out of my head. This is probably not healthy.

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