Cherry pie is my favorite pie I don’t even have to think about it. Last week I managed to hit the farmer’s market at the exact right moment to get the tart cherries I needed for this recipe and therefore achieved pie nirvana and am now deceased.
I did not grow up eating homemade pie because I did not grow up eating homemade anything. I was a child of convenience foods so imagine my surprise — nay my disillusion and disorientation –when I learned that this was not, technically, a cherry pie:
(Imagine what I thought a pie chart was).
I haven’t tasted one in decades but I’m confident the one I made this week was better.
The recipe comes from The Hoosier Mama Book of Pies, eponymously name for the best pie shop in Chicago and written by its owner, Paula Haney. I’ve made several recipes from this book and they were all outstanding. Let me walk you through them…
The Lemon-Chess Pie introduced me to a category well-known in the south and and now a favorite of mine.
The Maple-Pecan is now a holiday tradition.
And this, my friends, is Pork, Apple and Sage Supper Pie.
And there are so many more I’ve bookmarked to try: Sweet Corn Custard with Tomato Jam, Ham and Bean, Orange Cream and the Chicago-Style echoing the flavors in our classic Italian beef sandwich. There are also hand pies and quiches, pickles and stocks. You would not go wrong to make this your definitive pie cookbook.
Of course at the heart of a great pie is the crust. Paula is of the all-butter denomination and I am right there with her. It can be a little trickier to work with than vegetable-shortening but I’ve never found anything superior in flavor. (And if you want to buy pre-made I am a-ok with that – Cook’s Illustrated recommends the Pillsbury Refrigerated Pie Crust).
Cherry Pie from The Hoosier Mama Book of Pies
- 1 recipe All-Butter Pie Dough (see link in post)
- 4 cups pitted sour cherries
- 1/4 cup cherry juice
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1-1/2 Tablespoons cornstarch
- Pinch kosher salt
- Crust Dust (equal parts flour and granulated sugar)
- Pie Wash (equal parts cream and whole milk)
- Coarse-grained sugar for sprinkling
- Sort through the pitted cherries, removing any rogue pits or stems. Combine with the cherry juice and almond extract in a medium bowl and toss until the cherries are well coated.
- Place the sugar, cornstarch and salt in the small bowl and whisk to combine. Pour the dry ingredients over the cherries and mix gently. The cherries may not absorb all the dry ingredients.
- Roll out first round of dough per Paula's instructions and place in pie pan.
- Sprinkle Crust Dust into the empty pie shell. Pour in the cherries, making sure to scrape out any dry ingredients that stick to the side of the bowl. Gently smooth the pie filling with a spatula.
- Top with second dough round, trim excess and fold edge of top dough under bottom dough. Alternately, make a lattice top. Crimp with a fork or your favorite method. Cut slits for venting.
- Preheat oven to 400.
- Brush top of the pie with Pie Wash and sprinkle liberally with coarse-grained sugar.
- Bake for 45-60 minutes, rotating 180 degrees every 20 minutes, until the curst is dark bolden brown and the juices are bubbling thickly.
- Cook for at least 2 hours before slicing.
Is this your recipe or did you "borrow" it?