Fresh Cherry Pie

Cherries. One of my favorite things about summer.

I picked up two gigantic bags at a local outdoor market last week. They were on sale because they were sort of funny looking–my husband described them as Siamese Twin Cherries. Each one had an appendage with its own pit. No matter. They were still delicious and we ate them.

A few days later I started craving cherry pie….a strong craving that had to be satisfied. Being somewhat naive, I wondered if anyone actually made their own fresh cherry pie. (I know, I know. Of course they do! I’m such an idiot….)I just always assumed cherry pie filling had to come from a can. No! It doesn’t. You can make your own. I headed to my book shelf to get my trusty cooking companion, The Joy of Cooking, and found the exact recipe I was looking for.

Conversation with my husband:

Me: “So…uh, what did you think of the cherry pie?”

Him: “Why do you ask? Didn’t you like it?”

Me: “Yeah, but you usually tell me what you think. So I was just wondering…”

Him: “It’s because I was too busy thinking to myself how lucky I was to be eating cherry pie made from fresh cherries. (Sigh.) I bet no one I know ate fresh cherry pie for dessert tonight…”

Yay! Another husband pleasing recipe. I always consider that a success.

Cherry Pie
From The Joy of Cooking

2 prepared pie crusts (store bought or homemade), rolled and ready to use

5 cups pitted sour or Bing cherries (2 to 2 1/2 lbs.)
1 1/4 cups sugar (3/4 cup for Bing cherries)
3 to 3 1/2 tbsp. cornstarch or quick-cooking tapioca
2 Tbsp. water
1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
1/4 tsp. almond extract
1 to 2 drops red food coloring (optional–I didn’t use it)
2 to 3 Tbsp. unsalted butter

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Fit one of the rolled pie crusts in a 9 to 10″ deep dish pie plate.

Place the pitted cherries in a large bowl. Sprinkle with sugar and cornstarch. Toss. Add water, lemon juice, almond extract, and food coloring (if using). Toss again to coat, making sure no lumps of sugar or cornstarch remain.

Pour the cherries into the prepared pie plate. Dot with the 2-3 Tbsp. unsalted butter.

Fit the second rolled pie crust on top of the filling and crimp the edge to seal the top and bottom crust together. Use a fork to poke holes along the top of the pie. Place the pie plate on a parchment or foil-lined baking sheet to catch any overflowing juices.

Bake at 400 degrees F for 30 minutes. Lower oven to 350 degrees F, and let the pie continue to bake for an additional 30-45 minutes, or until the top and bottom are golden brown, and the juices are bubbling and syrupy.

Cool the finished pie on a rack until ready to serve. (We let it cool completely for neater slices and then warmed the individual slices in the microwave for 10 seconds.)

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  1. Cherry pie is my favorite pie! I made one with sour cherries last fall, and it was out of this world. Can’t wait to do it again – this one looks great, and I love how you decorated it!

  2. oh why, oh why do you torture me so with such beautiful pictures of fresh cherry pie? i may weep. i also love the cherry cut outs on top, just the right touch. ooh, my mouth is watering, i must go. happy you enjoyed it, you made it, you deserve it.

  3. Cherry pie filling from a can is VILE, VILE, VILE.

    Be on the look out for sour cherries; they make the best pies, far superior to any other type. However, sour cherries are almost heirloom at this point, so if you find some, snatch them up.

  4. Man–I need to go find me some cherries! A number of years ago I suddenly found myself with a number of pounds of sour cherries. I made jam with them and it was divine! I still think about it and need to find some sour cherries to make jam with.

  5. Oh-my-goodness!
    Seriously Lindsey ~ does food really look like that at your house???!!! WOW! Amazing!!

    Your recipes and your delectable photos make me want to crawl through my computer and plunk myself down at your kitchen table~

    Literally mouth-watering. Beautiful.

    Would you like to come over for our 4th of July celebration and bring your Cherry Pie? Please?


  6. You are amazing. I would not have thought of using Bing Cherries…actually…not fresh cherries of any variety. You are inspiring!

  7. this is my favorite pie. i make the one for sour cherries canned in water from joy of cooking. gotta find myself some fresh cherries.

  8. Ooh, yes, cherry pie! Frozen sour cherries make a very good pie — if you can find them. Since I live in Wisconsin, I can also buy great sour cherries in light syrup at some of my local markets — they grow a LOT of cherries up in Door County, Wisconsin. You could try a Google search for Door County cherries…

    They also grow sour cherries in Michigan, as I recall.

    And I am growing some in my yard, too! You must live further south, right now the sour cherries on my tree are tiny and green.

    Pies are great for husband-pleasing — my husband has been known to call me the “Pie Queen” when I make him one.

  9. I love cherry season and I love, love, LOVE cherry pie made with fresh cherries!! Now look what you did! You have made me crave cherry pie and I won’t rest now until I’ve made one! tsk tsk!

  10. i love cherries in any way. i just got a bag of organic cherries and i will be baking with them today. the pie looks so good…

  11. Awesome Cherry Pie… and my husband quoted yours nearly identically… admitting that the pitting I made him do with me was worth the amazing pie :)

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