The first Monday of July finds me back in my office, behind a computer screen or down on the treatment floor. I have no doubt that by the end of my first week, I will be back into the swing of things and the previous six month sabbatical will almost feel like a distant dream.
I’m hoping this pie will help ease me back into work routine, especially as it’s easy-to-make pie with local BC cherries. I love pie!
The BC cherries have been flooding the markets over the last few weeks, and we’ve had a continual supply in our fridge. Every time the fridge door opens, a small handful of cherries gets plucked from the bowl, regardless of what we were actually needing from the fridge.
I grew up in Saskatchewan but my grandparents lived in BC, and every summer they would drive out to visit, and I remember the trunk of their car filled with piles of fruit (peaches, cherries, pears, apples). The peaches were grand, as were the apples and pears, but cherries were my favourite. I would fill my bowl with handfuls of them and wander off to nibble away. To savour them, I would try to suck the pit clean of all the cherry-goodness. It’s funny how certain foods can bring back so many memories!
This pie is not difficult to make but can be time-consuming, depending on your cherry-pitting method. Our cherry-pitter is a chopstick. Pushing the end of the chopstick through the stem will push the pit out the other end. It can be a messy job, so I would recommend you (a) do this over the sink, (b) do NOT wear white, and (c) avoid starting your career as a hand-model until the cherry stains have worn from around your fingernails.
The pastry dough can be made ahead and left in the fridge until you’re ready to make the pie. At a minimum, it should rest in the fridge for at least an hour, to stay nice and cold.
The cherries are tossed with a bit of sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice, then poured into a pastry-lined 9-inch pie plate. I decided to do a criss-cross lattice-top for this pie. Then into the oven it goes for 90 minutes. You know it’s done when the top is golden-brown and the cherry filling is bubbling away.
The hardest part of this recipe is not the making of the pie, it’s waiting for it to cool! A general guideline is about 4 hours, which is definitely not long enough if the inside temperature of your apartment is roughly 28°C, as it has been here in BC.
We couldn’t wait. The filling was runny. We didn’t care. It was a mess. It was awesome 🙂
The next day, after the pie had sat in the fridge overnight, the filling had set nicely making the pieces much more picture-worthy.
I’ve read some fruit-pie recipes that use a cringingly large amount of sugar (some well over 1 cup!), I don’t agree with this nor do I think it’s necessary. Ripe fruit is sweet enough and will become sweeter as it cooks, so I’ve only used a small amount here. Give it a try, and see what you think!
- Serves: 1 - 9" pie (8 slices)
- Serving size: 1 slice
- Calories: 470
- Fat: 26.5 g
- Saturated fat: 16.5 g
- Carbohydrates: 55.8 g
- Sugar: 21.9 g
- Sodium: 5.5 mg
- Fiber: 3.2 g
- Protein: 5 g
- Cholesterol: 68.6 mg
- 850 g whole cherries
- ¼ cup sugar
- ¼ cup cornstarch
- 1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
- 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 cup + 2 tbsp unsalted butter
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1 tbsp caster sugar
- 1 tbsp apple-cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp ice-cold water
- Sift together the flour, sugar and salt. Add the butter (cubed) and pulse in a food processor, or mix quickly by hand.
- Add the liquid (vinegar + water) and pulse until the dough starts to come together. Remove the dough from the bowl and knead gently on the countertop to bring the dough together.
- Divide the dough into two equal pieces. Shape and flatten into discs, wrap in plastic or parchment paper, and refrigerate for at least one hour (up to 4 days).
- Pit and remove the stems from all the cherries. Roughly chop them into quarters.
- Place the cherries in a large bowl and add the sugar, cornstarch and lemon juice. Thoroughly mix to ensure all cherries are covered.
- Place the cherry mixture into the fridge while you prepare your pastry.
- Pre-heat the oven to 350°F and place a baking tray on the middle rack of the oven.
- On a lightly-floured counter, roll out one piece of chilled dough into 13-inch circle (basically, make sure the size of the rolled dough is about 4 inches larger than your pie plate). Carefully place the dough into the pie plate, gently pressing it down into the bottom and sides of the plate.
- Roll out your second piece of dough in the same manner. If you're making a lattice crust, cut the dough into 2-inch strips.
- Spoon the cherry mixture (including extra liquid) into the prepared pie plate. Brush the edges of the dough with some milk. Place the top crust on, pressing the edges of the top-dough onto the bottom dough.
- Cut off any excess dough, leaving about 1 to 2 inches overhanging the pie plate. Roll the bottom dough over the top dough and crimp the edge to seal. Brush the top crust with some milk and sprinkle lightly with sugar.
- Place the pie on the baking sheet in the pre-heated oven (to catch any spills) and bake for about 90 minutes, or until the crust is golden-brown and the cherries are bubbling.
- Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack for a minimum of 4 hours, or over night, to let the mixture fully set.