Friday, November 19, 2010

One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest Pie

Today, November 19th, marks the anniversary of the premier of One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest film by brilliant director Milos Forman.
I just moved to Salem, Oregon, a few hours away from Ken Kesey's hometown of Springfield, Oregon. Salem is also home to the Oregon State Mental Hospital where they filmed the classic flick back in the 70'.

Interestingly, Salem just unveiled the new Oregon State Mental hospital to replace the 127-year old hospital where the film was set. It's a far cry from how the film portrays the hospital. It's a state-of-the-art space where patients will receive some of the best treatment available.

One night after watching One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest, I decided to bake a pie in honor of the movie.. and what did I use as main ingredients?... duh, nuts and banannas!

Here's my rough recipe:

I heated up sugar, carmelizing it, then added butter, chocolate chips, a bit of cinnamon and cardamom and poured the mixture over whole walnuts, which gave them a toffee-like flavor.

I chopped up the toffee-coated walnuts and put them on the bottom of a pie crust and then added ripe banannas.

I made a quick custard with eggs, sugar, butter, vanilla and milk and poured it over the top of the pie then sprinkled cinnamon over the top.

When I make this pie again, I plan to use milk from the Springfield Creamery, the creamery that produces Nancy's Yogurts, and is Kesey's original dairy run by Ken Kesey's older brother Chuck, his wife Sue and their son Kit and daughter Sheryl. Read this Seattle Times article Counter Culture about the different lives Ken and Chuck lived and the Springfield Dairy.

Then I cooked the pie until the banannas were soft and pie crust brown.