Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Strawberry Pie

Last week I made an impulse buy of a package of strawberries. They were sitting in the fridge for a few days when my husband warned me I'd better do something with them before they went bad.

Hmm. How about a strawberry pie? That sounded good to me!

I got my trusty Betty Crocker's Cookbook out for the crust recipe. Only in my recipe I tried something a little different. I replaced some of the flour with corn starch. I had seen this in a shortbread recipe and it claimed to make it lighter.

I was very pleased with the results of my corn starch experiment. I have always loved the crust on Marie Callendar's pies. My crust was close to theirs. Using the corn starch may be the secret!

Then I got the bright idea to put cream cheese on the bottom of the crust before putting the strawberries on top. I looked in the cookbook to see what they had and lo and behold! I guess my idea wasn't so original after all. So of course I had to change it up again. Instead of using 3 ounces of cream cheese I used 8 and I sweetened it up with a little powdered sugar. Nothing like a little sweet and fat overload!

By the time it was all said and done it turns out my pie was a success. My son was away for the week but my husband said the pie was really good. My son is back now. Yesterday I made it again so I could take the pictures for the blog. My son ate almost all of it. That means it was good.

Here is the recipe for you. (This is for an eight or nine inch pie.)

The ingredients for the crust are: 1/3 C + 1 T shortening; 2/3 C flour; 1/3 C corn starch; 1/2 t salt; 2-3 T ice cold water. The rest of the pie ingredients are: 8 oz cream cheese; 1/4 C powdered sugar; approx. 1 pound fresh strawberries; 1/2 C strawberry jam; 4 T Grand Marnier. Notice my vintage Tupperware flour canister. It's ugly but it serves its purpose.
To make the crust put the shortening, flour, corn starch, and salt in a bowl. Mix with a fork until the ingredients are all incorporated.
Add the ice water one tablespoon at a time and stir until it all comes together.
Shape the dough into a disc, wrap in plastic and let it chill while you wait for the oven to come to 475.
When you are ready roll the dough out and place it in your pie pan. Then get to serious poking with your fork. You can prick the dough all over or use pie weights to keep the dough from puffing up while baking. Most people use a sheet of tin foil and dry beans. When I do it I don't like to waste the beans so I use tin foil and a few metal spoons criss-crossed over the top. Hey, whatever works. Whichever method you use, then bake the shell in the 475 oven for about 10-15 minutes.

Don't laugh at my poor fluting skills. I can never make a pretty edge no matter how hard I try. Well, at least they taste good!

Of course you can use a premade dough/shell if you must. But it wouldn't be nearly as fun or messy now, would it?

While the shell is cooking you can start the cream cheese mixture. Beat the cream cheese until it's nice and soft, then add the powdered sugar. When the shell comes out of the oven spread it evenly over the bottom.

Rinse the strawberries and cut the tops off. Arrange them over the pan. I would have preferred smaller strawberries but I had to work with what I had. Here I tried to put them in the pan so the biggest were in the middle and the smaller ones were to the side.

Now for the topping. Mix the strawberry jam and the Grand Marnier in a small saucepan. Heat it until it's all melted and then spoon over each strawberry so the whole pie is nice and shiny. I love shiny things. Put the pie in the refrigerator for a couple of hours.

Isn't that pretty!

STRAWBERRY PIE

Crust:
1/3 C + 1 T shortening
2/3 C flour
1/3 C corn starch
1/2 t salt
2 - 3 T ice water

Preheat oven to 475. Mix shortening, flour, corn starch, salt with fork until it resembles crumbs. Add water, one tablespoon at a time, until mixtures holds together. Shape into disc, wrap with plastic wrap and chill for about 30 minutes. Roll dough out, place in 8 or 9 inch pie pan. Flute edges, dock bottom and sides of pie. Bake for about 10 - 15 minutes.

Filling:
8 oz cream cheese
1/4 C powdered sugar
approx. 1 lb strawberries
1/2 C strawberry jam
4 T Grand Marnier

Beat cream cheese with powdered sugar. Spread over bottom of crust (this may work better when it's still warm from the oven).

Rinse strawberries and cut the green top off. Arrange over the cream cheese.

Heat jam and Grand Marnier in a small saucepan until melted. Spoon over the strawberries. Refrigerate for a couple of hours.


5 comments:

Anonymous said...

YUM! I wished I lived near you - (but, on the other hand, you might not appreciate a "pest" who would constantly come snooping around for taste tests, sigh). The recipe is almost as good as being near you as far as taste testing goes. Getting to see you in person and sharing (yuppers, I'd make some goodies in exchange) are, sadly, the "missing ingredients" here.

Keep up the good Blog work!

Love You,

M

Carol said...

Yum! This looks delicious. Strawberry pie is a favorite of mine. I think I'll try out your recipe, so I can satisfy my craving.

Anonymous said...

I always wondered how Marie got her crusts so yummy, now the whole world knows!
Or at least all of us who read your blog...
mt

Jenn said...

That looks so good !

Anonymous said...

I NEED a piece right now!!! I think your recipe will get a work out this week!! I will skip breakfast, lunch and dinner and have some sweet PIE!!!
Patti