My parents have this gorgeous cherry tree on their property and every July that corner of the yard gets covered with fallen cherries. With this over-abundance of fresh fruit, and the fact that cherry pie just happens to be my father's favourite, my mother will bake a cherry pie.
Now this is a real treat. It only happens once a year (twice if we're lucky).
...because picking and hand-pitting 6 cups of cherries is a labour of love.
In my house, you know you're a very special guest if a cherry pie is made for your visit!
(I'm so loved!!)
Anyway after I posted the picture (below) on instagram, I got more than one request about the recipe.
So I picked my mother's brain about exactly how she "threw it together" and we have arrived at a recipe, folks!
Read on for the details.....
My Mother's Amazing Fresh Cherry Pie
Pie Crust (my grandmother's recipe)
(makes enough for a top and bottom crust)
2 cups flour
3/4 tsp salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, slightly softened (but not mushy)
1/4 cup vegetable shortening
5 tablespoons ice cold water
Mix flour and salt. Cut in butter and shortening using a pastry blender (or two butter knives held in criss-cross position) until coarse crumb texture is achieved. Make a small well in the dough, and add 1 Tbs ice cold water. Mix in with a fork. Repeat with remaining water, 1 tablespoon at a time. Gently knead dough together into a ball (do not over mix), cut in half, and flatten each half slightly into 2 small disks. Cover with plastic wrap (or a bowl as my grandmother did) and set aside for 15 minutes before rolling out.
6 cups fresh cherries, washed and pitted (*my mother uses the cherries from her cherry tree, which are quite tart. If using very sweet cherries, add 2Tbs lemon juice)
1 cup sugar
4 Tbs cornstarch
Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
Place half the cherries in a medium saucepan. Mix the sugar and cornstarch together first, then add to the cherries. Cook over medium heat, stirring often, until thick (about 5 minutes). Then remove from heat. Add the remaining cherries. Set aside.
Roll out your pie dough to make a top and bottom crust. Line a pie plate with one of the crusts (if one is larger, use the larger one for the bottom), then add in the filling. Dip your finger into some water and moisten all along the edge of the bottom crust. Gently lay top crust on top, and pinch/flute (or roll under) edges together. Make a few slits in top crust to allow steam to escape while baking.
Bake pie at 375 degrees for 30 minutes, then lower temp to 350 degrees and bake for a remaining 15 minutes (or until crust is a nice golden colour). Enjoy!