Every once in a while, I fantasize about being a pie genius. Like Jenna in Waitress. I’d invent pies on the spot with witty names and they’d always work out when I tried to make them. Always.
Except I’m far from being an expert on pie. I think I’ve only made four of them ever, maybe five. Well, maybe more if you count the ones made with store-bought crust, but that’s really cheating, isn’t it? I’d like to make pie more often, but it seems like more of a commitment than cookies, muffins, quick breads, and cakes, which are so much easier to hand off to others and share. You can’t just throw a slice of pie into a baggie and bring it to work for your friends. You don’t distribute bites of pie to your children’s friends as they run in and out of your apartment repeatedly. So rather than be stuck eating it all myself–because you know if it’s in the house, I WILL eat it–I just don’t make it.
Yesterday, however, I felt very Jenna-esque. It wasn’t my own creation–Willow Bird Baking was the source of my inspiration–but I did put it together, and that counts. The crust may not have been expertly crimped but the taste was fantastic. Maybe there’s hope for me yet…?
Summer Strawberry Sour Cream Pie
(or: I’m Sick of the Record-Breaking Snow and Want to Get Away Pie)
discovered on Willow Bird Baking
Makes 1 9″ pie which serves 6-8 people
Pie Crust: (or you can use an unbaked, prepared crust)
- 2 cups all purpose flour
- 1 tsp sea salt
- 1/4 cup cold lard (non-hydrogenated if available) (or from your own bacon, like I did)
- 1/2 cup cold butter, chopped
- 3-4 Tbsp ice cold water
- 1 egg and 1 tsp heavy cream for egg wash
- 1 quart (4 cups) fresh strawberries
- 1 cup all purpose flour
- 1 1/4 cups vanilla sugar, reserve 1 Tbsp
- Dash sea salt
- 1 cup sour cream (not fat-free)
Preheat oven to 450 degrees Fahrenheit.
In a large bowl, mix together the dry ingredients for the pie crust. Cut in the cold lard and butter with a pastry blender. (You can do this in a food processor, too, but you have more control over the texture of the final product when you do it by hand.) Stir in water, 1 Tbsp at a time, until the dough just comes together–you don’t want to use too much water. Dump out onto the counter and form into a large disc, then wrap in saran wrap and put it in the fridge for 30 minutes.
Wash strawberries, then hull and chop in half. In another bowl, mix together the flour, sugar, and salt. Stir in the sour cream. Once completely combined, stir in the strawberries.
Flour your work surface and pie dough, then roll out until it’s 2 inches larger than your pie dish. Fold in half gently, then half again, and transfer to your pie plate and unfold gently. Crimp the edges and trim the excess. Spread the filling into the crust but don’t pack it down–there should be some space in the filling. Mix together the egg and cream and paint it on the exposed edges of the pie crust with a pastry brush. Sprinkle the reserved 1 Tbsp sugar on the filling and pop it in the oven.
Bake for 10 minutes, then drop the temperature down to 350 degrees Fahrenheit and bake for an additional 30 minutes. Broil for 2-3 more minutes to get a browned top, then remove from the oven to cool completely before serving.