One of My Very Favorite Things: Strawberry Pie
I promised in my most recent post on picking strawberries, that today I’d write about my favorite thing to make out of strawberries.
Did you guess: jam, shortcake, pie, cheesecake, or maybe a trifle? Or maybe I should ask, what is YOUR favorite thing made with strawberries?
My hands down favorite strawberry thing, besides eating them fresh from the patch, is pie.
Okay, so my strawberry pies are not as beautiful as the ones you see at a restaurant. But what they lack in eye appeal they make up for in full bodied sweetness and nutrition. Did you ever succumb to a beautiful piece of strawberry pie at a restaurant and then think, oh, how tasteless? All sugary glue/glaze and hard strawberries shipped from who knows where?
My recipe comes from Fellowship Cooking from my home congregation, North Goshen Mennonite (Ind.), dog-eared and grease stained, so you know it is good. Counting a strawberry chiffon pie listed there, there are FOUR strawberry pie recipes in one cookbook, but my favorite I’ve adapted from Viola Miller, the mother of one of my brother’s childhood friends.
1 pint strawberries, crushed
2 ½ Tablespoons cornstarch
2 Tablespoons lemon juice
2 Tablespoons strawberry jello mix, (as powder)
1 cup sugar
1 pint whole or sliced strawberries, as you prefer
Baked pie shell
Add sugar, cornstarch, jello and lemon juice to the 1 pint of crushed strawberries; cook until clear and thick, stirring constantly.
Remove from heat. When cool, put into previously baked and cooled pie shell.
Add the second pint of whole or sliced strawberries—placing them one at a time for a prettier pie, or just add willy nilly.
Refrigerate at least one hour before serving. Serves 6-8. May be topped with whipped cream.
For this pie crust, I used up a half cup of lard (made 2 crusts, froze one for later use) I had in my cupboard from another cooking project. The lard was older, but not rancid, and had softened. I pieced this crust together like I was playing with Play-Doh, pinching and merging it together. It made for a very rich crust which my husband drooled over each time I served it. He has no problems with a crust that falls apart on slicing: the better the crust, the worse it looks.
Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens … fresh homemade strawberry pie is one of my favorite things.
Mom’s shortcake with strawberries is another, but that’s for another day.
For hundreds of recipes helping you cook whatever’s in season, check out Simply in Season, from Herald Press.
For other favorite recipes see my book, Whatever Happened to Dinner: Recipes and Reflections on Family Mealtime.