I didn't win!
They only got 42 entries. The criteria were appearance, flavor/taste, filling, crust. A woman just ahead of me at the registration desk said they were still taking entries and she had only enrolled yesterday (even though the rules said you had to mail in the form by last Saturday). Her pie looked absolutely awful. She had glued red food-coloring distorted heart shapes to cover up holes in the top and the crust on one side was crumbled. I think it was in a glass dish and was a 10", both also rules violations. Her pie was picked for the finals, I don't know how delicious it would have had to have been to have made up for the point loss on appearance. Another rules violation, there were several Dutch apples, at least three, and I think all of them made the finals. Several of the early numbers that got into the finals were clearly Pillsbury crusts, they were perfect and beautiful-looking, like Mrs. Smith's or you had bought them at a bakery.
When they called the numbers, it went something like this: 2, 4, 6, 7, 8, 11, 12, 20, 30, 37. I didn't go in during the judging, but Bob did for a short time. He said four teams of two were tasting the pies and they were up to the teens, so I guess they went in order. There was an advantage in getting one of the low numbers (I was 22). When Bob went in they were cutting slices for the judges. He said they were working on a lattice-top pie that was so hard they could barely cut it. They did not sample a full piece of mine, but instead seem to have eaten it right out of the tin, wedge of top crust only and a few apples, leaving the bottom crust and most apples intact. I guess once they hit seven, they saw they were only at number 12, were getting full (4 teams would have to eat 10-11 slices each?), had 30 more pies to taste, figured they needed to pick a few higher numbers, and just quickly tasted the remaining pies right in the tins?
I'm also thinking that if they allowed rules violations on so many things - maybe they also allowed it on filling, and some of the pies were apple walnut, etc.
Anyway - we got the Swine Flu pie back and Sophie was so happy when we got home! Of course the dogs had to have all the parts of the pie near where the judge stuck a fork in it. (Eww.) I had a piece to be sure my judgment wasn't off and concluded that it is one of my best pies ever. Even Mimmie would have approved, I think.
I had a good time yesterday baking, feeling better, thinking of Mimmie. Also, it's a nice area up there at the orchard - my first trip out of the house since Tuesday. The weather was nice so it wasn't too bad. Not doing it next year though!