Cherry Pie & Cherry Ice Cream
May is peak cherry season and living near a California cherry growing region means it’s time to pick cherries! I went to G&S Farms in Brentwood on Memorial Day (with a facemask of course) and two of us picked 20 pounds in an hour! We ate as much fresh as our tummies could take, and then I got to work with cherry pie, cherry-chambord ice cream, and cherry sauce.
My chief cherry picker and pitter (husband!) deserved a perfect cherry pie. So I checked a favorite resource, TheKitchn.com for tips. Their Best-Ever Cherry Pie covered all the tips I was looking for like to pre-cook the filling or not, how much starch and sugar to use, and best way to freeze the filling. Yeah! Pie for later.
TheKitchn recipe suggests purchased pie dough, but if you’ve not been shopping lately and need to make your own, my Stir-N-Roll Pie Crust is simple. I’ve made it since I was a little girl from the original Betty Crocker cookbook. My step-by-step instructions are here. It’s made with canola or vegetable oil, and I sometimes use olive oil, whichever you have works great. It’s a little healthier than typical pie crusts, and can be made plant based using soy or other milk for the liquid. The only drawback might be if you want a lattice crust. Which I learned from TheKitchn is best for cherry pie because it allows more steam to escape the moist filling. Oil pie dough is fragile and difficult to cut into lattice strips. So I cut big stars to do the same trick. It works and looks cute too.
To enjoy the cherries a little longer, I made cherry ice cream because we had a few sweltering days this week. Again I hit the internet for ideas then adapted. Melissa Clark’s NYTimes Cherry Ice Cream which has a little buttermilk (I had on-hand), and a touch of kirsch sounded yummy but I used Chambord, a raspberry liquor, because it was in my liquor cabinet. All seemed great until it wasn’t freezing in my ice cream churner. Maybe the kitchen was too warm or the mixture not quite chilled enough, but I got impatient and poured it into a metal baking pan. Popped it in the freezer, scraped/stirred with a fork twice over a couple hours, and it was perfect! Way easier than taking my ice cream maker out. You can get the recipe from NYTimes and let me know what you think!
Enjoy summer fruit at it’s peak!
Stir ‘n Roll Pie Crust for any fruit pie
Stir-N-Roll Pie Crust
Makes one double crust 9-inch pie
- For the crust:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup choice of canola sunflower or vegetable oil
- 1/4 cup milk
- 1/4 teaspoon table salt
- 1/8 teaspoon nutmeg
For Cherry Pie filling: Follow How to Make the Best-Ever Cherry Pie instructions at TheKitchn.com. You might reduce the cornstarch to 2-3T, from the 1/4 cup in the recipe. I thought it was a little thick but cherry juicyness varies.
- 9 cups ~3 lbs thinly sliced apples, peeled or unpeeled - choose a combination of sweet and tart apples, or stone fruit
- 3/4 cup granulated sugar or part brown sugar
- 3 Tbsp all-purpose flour add 2-3 Tbsp more if fruit is very juicy
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1 tsp ground ginger optional
Click for Step-by-step photos of the instructions below
- Stir dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Measure oil and milk together in a glass measuring cup. Add all at once to the flour; stir lightly and quickly with a fork, just until flour is completely moistened.
- Shape into a ball with your hands. Cut in half with a knife.
- Lightly dampen a smooth work surface so that a square sheet of wax paper will stick. See note below. Place one half of dough on paper, place second sheet of paper on top and flatten dough with hand.
- Roll from center of dough towards edges until dough is an even thickness (about 1/8 inch) and about 1 inch wider than diameter of the pie dish.
- Remove top sheet of wax paper. Lift by holding bottom sheet and invert over dish.
- Gently lift and set dough firmly against dish, smoothing any air bubbles. Save scraps that might tear from edges for patching later.
- Combine filling ingredients and place in dish, arranging apples so they are slightly compacted.
- Roll second crust and invert over filling. Pinch and roll top and bottom edges together, tucking firmly onto rim of dish. If dough cracks, mend by pressing together or adding a scrap of dough.
- Cut vents in top for steam to escape. For a slightly crunchier sweet crust, brush lightly with milk and dust with granulated sugar. (But not for savory pies!)
- Bake at 400°F about 1 hour until golden brown and juices are bubbly. I suggest placing a sheet of aluminum foil on the rack below the pie to catch any juices.
- Cool slightly before serving or serve at room temperature. Best enjoyed the same day, or reheat second day before serving.