By Conrad Dudderar
EL RENO – Barbara Musser sure knows how to make a coconut cream pie.
“That’s my specialty,” said Musser, who was named senior champion pie baker at the recent 2022 Canadian County Free Fair.
“One judge did say it was just an original pie, and the meringue did not weep at all. And that’s an important factor. She said it really had a true coconut flavor.”
The El Reno woman is a “repeat” blue ribbon winner, having been honored for her pie-baking acumen during the 2021 county fair. Last year was the first time she entered the competition.
Both times, Musser won first prize with her coconut cream pie.
And both times, she was surprised to earn the blue ribbon.
“I’m 85 and I’ve been baking since I was 6 years old,” she said. “I love to cook and bake.
“I’m honored to have been chosen two years in a row.”
The annual pie contest Aug. 26 was among highlights of the 68th Annual Canadian County Fair at the Canadian County Expo & Event Center, 3001 Jensen Road East.
Halle Hunt was named the junior champion pie baker, also with a coconut cream pie. Debby Anderson was named the “busy baker” with three blue ribbon pies.
The Canadian County Fair pie show was judged by Brenda Gandy-Jones and Kay Gray, of Stephens County. Forty-two pies were entered in the contest.
“They judge on the crust, the looks of the pie and the taste,” Musser shared.
Musser entered two other pies in this year’s fair, taking second place with her pumpkin pie and third place with her raspberry custard pie.
PRACTICE MAKES PERFECT
Canadian County’s premier pie baker was asked what makes her pies so good.
“I’d say practice,” Musser replied. “The last couple years, I’ve been baking for friends and family over the holidays since my husband passed away.
“I just go by my mother’s recipe for crust and the fillings.”
When baking fruit pie, Musser uses fresh – not frozen – fruit.
She also likes to make sugar cookies and cheesecakes.
Musser grew up in Pennsylvania and moved to Canadian County in 1974, settling in El Reno where her husband worked at the federal prison.
She worked in banking for more than 30 years and was a member of the Business and Professional Women (BPW) organization.
Musser has three children, eight grandchildren, 16 great grandchildren, and two great-great grandchildren.