Friday, June 26, 2009

Strawberry Pie

I've said it before, and I'll repeat for the record: Pie is NOT in my DNA. I make a great pumpkin pie, if you can discount the store bought roll-it-into-your-own-pan crust which permits me to pretend I'm competent. But I'm getting ahead of myself, here.

The kids brought home three lovely baskets of strawberries on Wed
nesday afternoon. All of them participated in active free range grazing for the rest of the day.

For my dearly beloved and me, however, lunch was strawberry shortcake on Wednesday and Thursday (and likely today, also). Breakfast Thursday and today was just simple bowls of strawberries with cream (for him) or nonfat milk (for me - hey, that new dress has to fit next week!).

Dessert Wednesday night was Strawberry Bavarian Cream.
I discovered it during last summer's great strawberry-fest; here's the recipe! You know I doubled it; how else would I have fed the hungry hordes? And I had a bit left over, which I hid in plastic cups in the fridge, and the little boys took outside for their picnic lunch Thursday.

So, last night I decided to step so far out of my element I might as well have been in China. I made strawberry pie. I know this is what you've all really been waiting for, pie, right?

This is from Bernard Clayton's Complete Book of Pastry, picked up at a used book sale in April. This is my first foray into that book, although I've been studying it, gathering my courage. For this recipe, he recommends using either a half-and-half crust, or a graham cracker crumb crust. Perfect! I can do crumb crust! It ain't pretty, but it's good! So, without further ado:



1 stick butter, melted
1-1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/2 cup sugar

Mix the three ingredients together, press into the bottom and sides of a greased pie plate, and bake at 350F for 10 to 12 minutes. Paula, for your baby, you can grind 1-1/2 cups almonds or hazelnuts (filberts) and use them in place of the cracker crumbs. Voila! Gluten free
for Paula!


1 quart strawberries
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp cornstarch
1/4 cup water

1 tbsp butter
3 ounces cream cheese

Choose the best 25 to 30 strawberries and set them aside. Puree the balance, and cook in a sauce pan with the sugar. When it boils, make a paste of the water and cornstarch, and whisk them in; cook for 5 to 8 minutes, until the mixture thickens and becomes clear. Remove from the heat, whisk in the butter, and let it cool.

In your food processor, cut the cream cheese into chunks, add 1 tbsp of the cooled strawberry mixture, and pulse until they are combined and smooth. Spread this in the bottom of the pie shell; it will be a thin layer. Hull the strawberries, and stand them, large end down, in the cream cheese mix. Spoon the cooled filling over them, and refrigerate until ready to use. Serve with whipped cream on top.
Notes: I made 2 pies at once, because if I was going to this much work, it was going to count. Besides, one pie is barely enough for 8 people for dessert, and that's my current population. The second one is still in my fridge; woe betide the person who tries to attack it before tonight's dessert. I actually used 67 strawberries between the two pies, but mine are 9" pie plates, so be aware: forewarned is forearmed. Also, please remember that pie is a foreign concept to me when I confess that I doubled 2 tablespoons of cornstarch and therefore used....2 tablespoons of Cornstarch! Thus, my filling is runny. We'll see if tonight's fares better after spending a full 24 hours waiting to be used. I do have to say that my dearly beloved has never had strawberry pie, and he loved this. Simply loved it. So did everyone else, so if you have time, try this!


The Blonde Duck said...

I'm so happy you made pie!

SissySees said...

You're lucky the Knight has gone home for the day. I don't make fruit pies either, but your photos would have tempted him too much.

Christo Gonzales said...

PIE = whoot whoot - looks good to me!

buffalodick said...

I like pie, unlike my family... I like this pie a lot!

Paula said...

My oldest daughter just happened to glance over my shoulder right as the last photo appeared on the screen. She, quite excitedly, exclaimed, "Where's the pie?" Poor thing was quite dismayed when she realized that I was not posting about a pie I had just made. Once again, my children wish to be adopted into your clan. :-)

~~louise~~ said...

If I could muster up the courage to bake a pie like that, I'd have to eat it all myself! Maybe both!

Kudos to you, Marjie...

♥peachkins♥ said...

love those strawberries.. I wanna grab everything from my screen and eat them..

Dawn said...

mmmmmmmmmmmmmm I can smell them strawberries, yummy

dogyarnfun said...

The pies look good, and the recipe doesn't sound too difficult. Hmm, I wonder if I can use frozen berries. If not, I'll store this recipe for strawberry season next year.

tavolini said...

Very good looking pie :)

I always use the frozen crusts. Never have had strawberry pie, but it is definitely the season for its sister pie, rhubarb!

foodcreate said...

Yummy ! I Can smell the Strawberry looks so Fabulous!

Thanks for Sharing your recipe!


Have a Great Day!