With the abundance of beautiful, ripe, juicy berries that this summer will provide us, it’s only natural to begin thinking of all the ways (besides eating them as is, of course!) that they can be used to make irresistible desserts to enjoy all season long.
As I visited the The 9th Avenue International Food Festival last Saturday, amongst all of the fried funnel cakes and foot-long hot dogs, I stopped by a stand that sold fresh fruit and saw a huge bag of beautiful, red cherries for an amazing price that I just couldn’t pass up. Happily (or at least until my shoulder began to ache), I toted that two-pound bag around for the rest of the day thinking of all the things I could make with my bounty.
From muffins, to chutney, to ice cream toppings, the possibilities were endless, but I remembered a delicious cherry pie my mom had made last year and I knew right away that that was what I wanted to make.
For my first cherry pie, I really am so proud of how it all turned out. If I’m not mistaken, this was also my first time attempting homemade pie crust from scratch (or at least the first time I can remember), as my mom is the pie crust connoisseur, but I decided to give it a try myself the old fashioned way using just my hands and a little elbow grease, and I got a crust I’m proud to call my own. I used this simple, straightforward recipe, but you can use your favorite or even a store bought crust (I won’t tell!), so I won’t be including it in the step-by-step down below.
For baking, I used this Vintage New England Flaky Crust Pie Tin from the 1950s that I got my mom for Christmas. I’m imagining some 1950s housewife all dolled up in a flowery, frilly apron and high heels happily flitting around the kitchen using this same pie tin to make dessert for Sunday’s dinner. While I didn’t get quite as fancy as the woman I’d imagined, in fact I’m quite the opposite when baking, it really was so fun to have that image in my head, on top of the fact that this pan really is so great to use. It is perforated on the bottom to allow an even baking without the bottom crust becoming too soggy, which I loved!
The pie turned out a little juicier than I would’ve desired, but I’m sure that could be remedied next time by either cooking the cherry/cornstarch mixture a little longer in the saucepan, but overall I’m a very happy camper.
Are you as excited for summer fruits as I am? I’d love to find out what favorite things to bake during this beautiful season.
Summer Cherry Pie
Adapted from this recipe
- 2 pounds of cherries, pitted
- 1 1/4 cups of sugar
- 4 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/8 teaspoon of almond extract (optional)
- 1 tablespoon of demerara or sanding sugar for sprinkling on top
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Prepare pie pan with desired crust and set aside.
- Place the cherries and cornstarch in a saucepan and allow to cook until a large percentage of the cherry juice has dissolved.
- Remove from heat and allow to cool slightly before mixing in the sugar and optional almond extract.
- Return the cherry mixture to heat and allow to cook a little longer until it begins to thicken.
- Remove from heat again and allow to cool considerably before pouring into prepared pie crust.
- Brush the edges of the pie crust with an egg wash and place top crust on, ensuring that there is a slit to allow excess cherry juice to drip, if need be (I used a lattice top).
- Bake for about an hour and allow to cool before serving.
I sadly missed last week’s Fiesta Friday, but I’m back this week and can’t wait to see what others have brought along. See you there!!