Sunday, February 3, 2013

Justice Pies: 20 Delicious and Easy Pie Recipes from the Justice Pie Project

My family was deeply touched by the work of the International Justice Mission and its cause of fighting modern slavery and we wanted to do more to help out. However, finding additional money from the family budget for a new charity was not easy. 

Then it came to me: why not create an Amazon Kindle e-book from the delicious pie recipes from the Justice Pie Project and donate the royalties to become a monthly donor to the International Justice Mission Canada. It doesn’t get tastier than that!

And that is how I came to write the e-book Justice Pies: 20 Delicious and Easy Pie Recipes from the Justice Pie Project. 

Justice Pies shares 20 delicious pie and tart recipes. All of the recipes are easy and fun to make. Justice Pies includes old favourites and shares unique recipes that are clearly written and easy to follow.

Justice Pies includes the following recipes: Luscious Lemon Lavender Tarts, Heaven’s Gate Blueberry Butter Tarts, Ruby Slipper Cranberry-Apple-Raisin Pie, Princess Peach Pie, Sweet Spring Maple Walnut Pie, Quick-As-A-Cat Can Wink Her Eye Cherry Pie, Cranberry Pecan Butter Tarts, Apple-Almond-Maple-Caramel Tarts, Picnic Island Blueberry Pie, Northern Lights Lingonberry Pie, Cosy Cottage Bumbleberry Pie, Hint O'Lime Lemon Cream Pie, Chocolate Pecan Pie, Sky High Coconut Cream Pie, and more.
This book also tells the story of the Justice Pies Project. In this project, a group of friends banded together to bake pies to raise money for charity, build community, engage in family volunteering, and teach their children and themselves more about the world around them. 

It is a wonderful record of pies, community, and learning about justice.

You can order Justice Pies: 20 Delicious and Easy Pie Recipes from the Justice Pies Project as a Kindle e-book from Amazon USA here: or from Amazon Canada here:

Enjoy some pie and thank you for your support. May God bless you now and always!


Saturday, August 15, 2009

Justice Pie Day!

Justice pie day was simply wonderful… a bit chaotic but wonderful! Just over twenty people showed up to help on Saturday. We started off the day with a prayer, for justice, for freedom for the slaves, for the International Justice Mission and for community to grow and flourish amongst us. My kitchen was definitely too small so people took turns with baking. The kids were so eager to help – that was a joy to see! When not baking, the adults hung out on the deck and the kids went swimming, played a wild game of “Jail Break” in the basement (not sure where they came up with that one!), “Twister”, and that old favourite: hide and go seek. The teens watched TV, read books (Agatha Christie!), played the board game "You Know You're a Redneck When", texted their friends and hung out with the rest of us. To help people learn about modern slavery, we watched the video from the IJM called “We Were Free.” Unfortunately, things got so chaotic that we forgot to take many pictures but I have posted a few from early in the day.

The power went out for most the day but we pressed on. The team baked one strawberry-rhubarb (there were bidding wars on that one!); two peach (again, bidding wars!); nine raspberry; six apple; five blueberry and various other pies for a grand total of over 30 pies! After baking, the group had a potluck supper together and sat around talking until after the sun had long set and the stars had come out. It was a wonderful time of love, service and community. I’ll mail our donation of $300 to the IJM this week and I hope it will be a lovely surprise and a blessing for them and the awesome work they do. I would like to end the Justice Pie Project with a prayer and a song:

Here is the same simple prayer that we first started this project with: “Dear Jesus, we want to do something to help people in need. Please help us and bless what we are doing.”

I would like to end our project with the song: Amazing Grace sung by Chris Tomlin: Turn up your speakers!

Wishing you all to be ever-surrounded by the grace, love and peace of Jesus Christ.

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Almost Ready

I’m back at work this week and so have less time for blogging or berrying. Still, last night we went out to the farm in Stayner again with some friends to pick more raspberries for the justice pies. My farming friend says to be sure to note that they are ORGANIC raspberries. Now my freezer is absolutely so full that it simply cannot hold even one more berry.

A young friend (aged nine) who came along to help asked me questions would break your heart. “Why?” he said over and over. “Why would people make other people be their slaves? Why can’t we stop it? Why don’t more people care?” He decided that he would like to pick raspberries for ten hours straight the very next day and then sell the berries by the roadside with a big sign beside him that read: “Free the slaves”. Great idea! His last comment on the matter was to inform me that when he grew up, he was going to work for the International Justice Mission – either that or be a circus performer! As we drove home from the berry patch the full moon shone down lighting up the farm fields and we were thoughtful; thinking of this child’s questions about slavery and wishing there were answers.

It is just two days until Justice Pie day. I’m very moved at the support people have given this small project. Besides help with berry picking, I’ve received a mountain of recipes and baking tips – from family and friends from all across Ontario: Barrie, Bracebridge, Haileybury, Kingston, Lively, Ottawa, Sudbury, Toronto and Windsor and even from Sweden, Finland and several from Facebook! And I’ve had so many wonderful conversations about justice - and about pies. Between family stuff, working, freezing berries, and buying last minute supplies, I probably won’t have time to post again until after Justice Pie Day on Saturday – so thank you so very much everyone, for caring, for helping for being there in a variety of ways. Amazing grace – how sweet the sound!

“Learn to do good. Seek justice. Help the oppressed. Defend the cause of orphans. Fight for the rights of widows.” (Isaiah 1:17)

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Helping Hands

I’m cutting and freezing peaches and baking a test butterscotch pie today. Evan and three of his friends are hanging around and splitting their time between playing computer games, going for a swim, playing guitar hero, and helping me. At 11 and 12 years old they are such nice boys and I’m sure they will grow into wonderful men who will be part of the good in the world. They make me laugh with their young exuberance and joy. The boys will chop fruit for a bit, help with the pastry, run to ask the neighbours for a cup of sugar, and even politely listen if I talk to them about modern slavery. But they will soon break in with what they are more interested in: 1) asking me when can they try some of the pie or 2) telling me about their latest adventures in their favourite computer game just now: WarCraft.

They have convinced me to join up to WarCraft, and I’ve set up a troll-like character called Brightheart. She goes on fantastic adventures and quests guided by these faithful boys (whoops, I mean elves, warriors and mages!). Thank you dear boys for helping me! You are too young to really understand the issues around modern slavery and I know none of you are into baking, but you help anyway just because you are kind and nice and good. I’m very touched to have you at my side, unlikely warriors, all of us. May God bless your helping hands!

Friday, July 31, 2009

Researching Modern Slavery

Today I’m taking a “berry” break and instead I am researching material about modern slavery so I can share information with people on Justice Pie day. I ordered the excellent video “We Were Free” from the International Justice Mission and also viewed many YouTube videos. It leaves me simply heart-broken to hear the stories and see the faces of these enslaved people. Heart-broken and ANGRY. We live in such freedom here in Canada. Most of us do not even know modern slavery exists. Today, on July 31, 2009, 27 million people are not free. That is the equivalent of almost the entire population of our country. I don't undestand why the media, governments, churches, etc. do not speak out more about this terrible tragedy. Slavery flourishes because of our silence. Thank God for organizations like the International Justice Mission! Here is another video from the amazing Zach Hunter on modern slavery and what ordinary people can do:

Thursday, July 30, 2009

Test Pies

Today, I cleaned and froze the raspberries, which is not nearly so fun as picking them! Then I decided to try out two new recipes: one for raspberry pie and the other for lemon cream. Evan and his friends wanted to help and even scalloped the edges of the pie for me. I was most impressed! We invited the neighbours over to help eat all this pie and that was a wonderful and unplanned bonus from this whole project: getting to know my neighbours better. One of my neighbours is a recent immigrant to Canada and had never tasted raspberries before. She loved them and she also shared stories of foods from her homeland. My parents had been visiting and had brought a blueberry pie – so the house is stocked with pie: blueberry, raspberry and lemon. I think I’ll have to invite more pie-eating friends over today! Or, perhaps I’ll let Evan and his friends polish them off for being so helpful. Justice pie day is going to be a tasty event!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Picking Berries!

We’ve been picking berries – north and south. In Sudbury, we picked blueberries – at a place called Blueberry Hill! Summer has been so cold that blueberries are scarce and hard to find. Still, I loved picking berries with my Mom amongst the black rocks, birches and pines of the north. We bought some sunny, warm, fresh, peaches from a farm in Niagara Falls. And last night, seven of us picked raspberries at our friend’s farm near Stayner. What a joy to pick berries together as family and friends, as dusk fell, birds sang, and we could hear a small brook running beside the patch. As we drove home, happy and tired with our fingers stained red, we watched a lighting storm in the distance. The whole van smelled like raspberries!

Everyone I tell about Justice Pie and modern slavery is so interested and wants to buy and a pie and learn more. One sweet teen girl wanted to set up a Facebook page to promote the Justice Pie day so that all of her friends could come along with her. Unfortunately, my kitchen is quite small and just won’t fit that many people. Even the berries are starting to take over my freezer – I’m glad our Justice Pie day is coming soon!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

About Pies and Justice

I’ve been talking about pies and justice with my family during these summer days. Pie seems to remind people of comfort, happy memories and family celebrations. In my family, blueberry is the front runner in terms of favourite pies. It must be the northern Ontario influence and the many summer days spent picking blueberries! To me, blueberries are simply the taste and smell of summer baked inside a pie. In my husband’s family, their favourite pies are more varied, but strawberry-rhubarb makes the top of their list (closely followed by sentiments such as “I never met a pie I didn’t like”).

And we’ve been speaking about justice as well. Justice runs deep in both families and our relatives have been involved in a wide variety of justice issues, including: the environment; fair trade; third world development; prisoner support; hospital volunteering; refugees; addictions counselling; poverty and just being there for people who need help. These family members remind me that we can and should take action to make a difference in the lives of others . Pies and justice – they’ve made for wonderful summer inspiration!

I’ve been also researching and reading more about modern slavery. Here is a video of Zach Hunter who founded “Loose Change to Loosen Chains”: Zach is young and deeply committed to addressing modern slavery. I hope Zach’s vision and passion inspire the young people who will be helping to make Justice Pies.

Thank God for organizations and people who care about justice!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Introduction to the Justice Pie Project

In May 2009 a group of dear friends from our church (Connexus Community Church in Barrie, Ontario went together to Oasis Retreat Centre on Manitoulin Island. We are all active volunteers at our church and elsewhere, we all have jobs and children and very busy lives, but during our retreat, this question kept coming up: God cares deeply about the poor and the oppressed, what more could we do to help?

After we got home from the retreat my husband Steve and I knew we wanted to take on some kind of small project. Our family and friends are amazing and caring people and we knew that many of them would like to work together and learn more about justice and help others. Steve, our son Evan (age 11) and I talked and prayed about what we could do and we came up with the following basic principles:

• Our project needs to be simple and manageable given how busy life already is
• It should be small enough to not compete with the other volunteer and donor commitments
• It needs to allow both adults and children to be involved
• Our project should give us new skills for any future justice work
• It should build community among those involved
Our project should promote family and group volunteering
• It should help people learn about the issues and needs in our community and world
Our project should give us a way to make a small difference in the world around us
In June 2009 we developed a plan for the Justice Pie Project. We would work together with any willing helpers to make pies for family and friends in exchange for a $10 donation per pie which we would give to an organization dedicated to rescuing victims of modern slavery: The International Justice Mission Canada. Steve, Evan and I set our fundraising goal at $300 by the end of September. We are going to have a Justice Pie day at our house on Saturday, August 8, 2009 where we would bake pies, learn about modern slavery, raise funds for an important cause, and have a day of fun, swimming, a potluck supper, and fellowship with whoever is willing to join us. Steve and I will provide the ingredients for making pies and we hope everyone who comes will donate $20 and take home two pies.

Though this idea is small, we hope we will learn a great deal and build our skills for getting more engaged in justice AND next year, maybe another friend would develop a justice project around a cause close to their heart and we would support them! We also hoped to show our children (and ourselves) that ordinary people like us don’t have to sit by on the sidelines; we can get involved, even in a small way, in the issues that concern us in the world. 

If you can't come that day, you still help by picking berries (or drop off some rhubarb!). Another way to help is to share your best pie recipes or pie stories with me. Or, you could pray for justice – rivers of it!

Why did we choose to support this cause? Like me, I’ll bet you may have thought that slavery ended many years ago. But did you know that there are millions of slaves right now in 2009? Did you know that there are more slaves now than at any point in history? The International Justice Mission Canada is a human rights organization that rescues victims of slavery. See for more information.

We baked our first Justice Pie (my Grandmother’s treasured rhubarb custard pie!) on a sunny warm June day (Father’s day!) up at my parents’ house in Sudbury. We started off the baking of our first pie with this prayer: “Dear Jesus, we want to do something to help people in need. Please help us and bless what we are doing.”

We hope that God will take this small offering of pie and love and community and use it to bless the lives of others.