Recently, I have been on a journey to explore skills sets that I acquired while in culinary school, but very seldom practice i.e. Baking and Pastry. I am happy to say that I am a pretty descent baker (shout out to my banana bread recipe), and I do vaguely remember being so excited to have learned the art of making pate a choux and pastry cream that even now I can spout the recipes off by memory.
Needless to say, as for most cooks who decide not to go the Baking & Pastry route, I found aspects of the genre too labor intensive and thought out. Meaning: Baking & Pastry requires the patients of waiting for your dough to proof and rise, staring at the cookies while they cool off...and none of that will even happen if you get the smallest amounts wrong with your measurements, or don’t concede to the process (in order).
I say this to say, I purposely took the MOST TIME CONSUMING route to make this pie. From kneading the dough by hand, and not using my mixer, to taking the pits out by hand of two full bags of fresh cherries as opposed to using canned or a tool. Why this torture? Because, I wanted to make sure that I still could. The dough recipe is a staple from an old school book, while the filling was a completely free styled. Not going to say that this is my prettiest work, but it taste great!
- Chef's Knife
- Heavy Sauce Pot (med to large)
- Micro plane
- Measuring Cups
- Measuring Spoons
- Pie Tin x2
- Rolling Pin
- Mixing Bowl
- Pastry Brush
- Spice Grinder (Optional)
- 2 Bags Fresh Cherries- If cherries are not in season, use canned
- 1/2 cup Sugar
- 1/2 cup Light Brown Sugar
- 1/4 cup Bourbon
- 1/2 of a whole Nutmeg Grated
- 1/2 tsp Dried Thyme (Use Spice Grinder to Grind Up)
- 1/2 tsp Dried Rosemary (Use Spice Grinder to Grind Up)
- 1/2 tsp Kosher Salt
- 2 Sticks Cinnamon Sticks
- 1/4 cup Cornstarch
- 1 1/2 Cup Water
- Zest from 1 lemon
- Juice from 1 Orange
- Put cherries in a colander, rinse with cool water, removing any visible bad ones.
- Remove pits from the cherries: I used the pushing the pit out by hand method.
- After removing every pit, combine cherry, and all pie filling ingredients into your pot.
- Turn heat to MedHigh, and bring to a soft boil. Then, reduce to low, and simmer for 40min. Remove Cinnamon sticks once done.
- Completely cool down before adding to your pie crust...this is SUPER important. You don't want to melt your pie crust.
- Filling can last for 5days or 2months in freezer.
Pie Dough- Preheat Oven to 400 degree F'
- 1 lb Unsalted Butter (cold, and cubed into small pieces)
- 3 1/3 cup Pastry or AP Flour (Sifted)
- 4 fl oz Buttermilk (1/2cup)
- 2 tsp Salt
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- 1 tbsp Vanilla or 1 whole vanilla bean
- 1 egg beaten (set to the side)
- 1 tsp sugar (set to the side)
- Sift Flour and cut your pieces of butter into the flour. If you don't have a dough blender tool or a mixer with a paddle attachment
- Combine Buttermilk, sugar, salt, and vanilla.
- gradually add to flour mixture, mixing in gently, being sure to not over mix.
- Once dough is incorporated, portion into 2 balls. Chill thoroughly prior to rolling.
- Dough is good for 3 days in refrigerator; 3months in freezer.
- This recipe will make 1 covered pie or 3 non-covered pies.
- Add a light coating of butter to your pie tins.
- Cover a clean surface with a generous amount of flour. Working with one portion of your dough at a time, roll dough from center out into a 10 inch circle.
- Place dough inside pie tin, and gently press against the sides. Some of your dough should be falling over the sides.
- Repeat the same steps with another ball of dough.
- Add your cherry filling to the bottom, dough filled tin.
- Cover with second piece of dough. Pinch sides where both top and bottom layer meet into a "wave" design to seal pie and form crust. Use knife to cut off the remaining dough.
- Cut four slits in the middle top of your pie for ventilation.
- Use your beaten egg mixture and brush a very thin layer on top of your crust. After sprinkle your reserve sugar on top.
- Bake for 50-60min on the bottom middle rack until golden brown. Allow to cool. Serve.
Ice Cream. Fresh Thyme. Mint. Reserved Cherry Filling.