To sit down at my grandmother’s kitchen table which was always decked out in a red checked tablecloth meant a special treat. One of the most anticipated was her fried apple pies. She prepared them in much the same way Jubilee Johnson does in Home to Currahee.
Like Jubilee, my grandmother spread screens on sawhorses in her back yard, and laid out thinly sliced apples to dry in the Georgia sun. Cheesecloth protected them from debris. A thunderstorm approaching meant scrambling to get the screens under cover, so the apples wouldn’t get wet.
When it came time to cook the pies, today we’d probably have our cardiologist standing by, as my grandmother fried them in “lard” (for the uninitiated, lard is animal fat). Thankfully, Jubilee has been influenced by his daughter’s health conscience attitude and now cooks his pies in canola oil. My grandmother kept hers in a pie safe just like the one Addie has in Home to Currahee. Dried apples could be kept for many months, so we enjoyed the pies almost year round.
This process of drying apples was called “laying away,” something once practiced regularly in generations past to prepare for the winter. Today, our “laying away” mostly consists of pension plans and stock investments. However, there’s another kind of “laying away.” Proverbs 7:1 says “My son keep my words, and store up my commands within you.”
When I feel a little off kilter, unprepared for life’s bumps and jolts, I can usually trace it back to not taking the time to steep myself in the word of God.
Daily study of the Bible helps us to “keep God’s words” and provides a foundation for our lives.
word of God supports us when winds of adversity threaten to blow us down.
“Laying away” the word of God in our hearts will reap benefits not just for the winter of the year or the winter of our lives, but also for all eternity.
Make sure you check out the recipe for Fried Apple Pies in Home to Currahee. My family loves it.