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Lattice-Top Cherry Pie

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Serves eight.

Yields one 9-inch pie.

This classic cherry pie uses sour cherries (not sweet cherries like Bings). During their brief season in early summer, sour cherries appear in some groceries and many farmers’ markets.

For the dough:
  • 6 oz. (12 Tbs. ) cold unsalted butter
  • 6-1/2 oz. (1-1/2 cups) bleached all-purpose flour
  • 3-1/2 oz. (3/4 cup) cake flour
  • 1/4 tsp. table salt
  • 1/4 tsp. baking powder
  • 4-1/2 oz. (1/2 cup plus 1 Tbs. ) cold cream cheese
  • 3 Tbs. heavy cream
  • 1 Tbs. cider vinegar
For the filling:
  • 3/4 cup plus 2 Tbs. granulated sugar
  • 2-1/2 Tbs. cornstarch
  • Pinch table salt
  • 1-1/2 lb. fresh sour cherries,  pitted (juices reserved) to equal 3-1/2 cups (1-1/4 lb.)
  • 1/8 tsp. pure almond extract
For the glaze:
  • 2 Tbs. milk
  • 1 Tbs. turbinado sugar or granulated sugar
Make the dough:

Cut the butter into 3/4-inch cubes. Wrap them in plastic and freeze until hard, at least 30 minutes. Put the all-purpose flour, cake flour, salt, and baking powder in a metal bowl and freeze for at least 30 minutes.

Put the cold flour mixture in a food processor and process for a few seconds to combine.

Cut the cold cream cheese into three or four pieces and add it to the flour mixture. Process for 20 seconds (the mixture should resemble fine meal). Add the frozen butter cubes and pulse until none of the butter pieces is larger than a pea, about five 3-second pulses. (Toss with a fork to see it better.)

Add the cream and vinegar and pulse in short bursts until the dough starts to come together (which will take a minute or two); the dough will still look crumbly but if you press it between your fingers, it should become smooth. Turn it out onto a clean work surface. Gather and press the dough together to form a unified mass.

Lattice-Top Cherry Pie Recipe

Cut the dough in half and put each half on a large piece of plastic wrap. Loosely cover the dough with the plastic. Using the wrap as an aid (to avoid warming the dough with your bare hands), shape one half of the dough into a flat disk and the other into a flat rectangle. Wrap each tightly in the plastic and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes and up to 24 hours.

Roll out the bottom crust:

Remove the disk of dough from the fridge (keep the rectangle refrigerated); if it’s very firm, let it sit at room temperature until it’s pliable enough to roll, 10 to 15 minutes.

Set the dough between two sheets of plastic wrap sprinkled lightly with flour. Roll it out to a 13-inch round that’s 1/8 inch thick, occasionally loosening and reapplying the plastic wrap.

Remove one piece of plastic and flip the dough into a standard metal 9-inch pie pan (it should be 1-1/4 inches deep and hold 4 cups of liquid). Fit the dough into the pan and carefully peel off the plastic. Trim the dough so there’s a 3/4-inch overhang. Fold the overhang underneath itself to create an edge that extends about 1/4 inch beyond the rim of the pie pan. Cover the dough-lined pie plate with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Make the filling and lattice top:

In a medium bowl, stir the sugar, cornstarch, and salt. Stir in the cherries (along with any juices) and the almond extract. Let the mixture sit for 10 minutes.

Remove the rectangle of dough from the refrigerator and let it sit at room temperature until it’s pliable enough to roll, 10 to 15 minutes. Roll the dough on a lightly floured surface to an 11x14-inch or larger rectangle (if it becomes an oval, that’s fine); it should be no more than 1/8 inch thick.

Cut ten 3/4-inch-wide strips lengthwise down the rectangle, using a ruler to measure and mark 3/4-inch intervals and to cut a straight edge. If you want a crimped edge on the strips, use a fluted pastry wheel

Stir the fruit filling a few times and scrape it into the pie shell. Arrange five strips of dough evenly over the filling, starting with a long strip for the center.  Gently fold back every other strip (the second and the fourth) to a little past the center. Choose another long strip of dough, hold it perpendicular to the other strips, and set it across the center of the pie.

Lattice-Top Pie Recipe

Unfold the two folded strips so they lie flat on top of the perpendicular strip.  Now fold back the strips that weren't folded back last time (the first, third, and fifth ones).

Lattice-Top Pie Recipe

Lay a second perpendicular strip of dough about 3/4 inch away from the last one.  Unfold the three folded strips, set a third perpendicular strip of dough 3/4 inch from the last one, and unfold the two strips.

Lattice-Top Pie Recipe

Repeat on the other side with the two remaining strips: fold back alternating strips, lay a strip of dough on top, and unfold.  Remember to alternate the strips that are folded back to create a woven effect. Trim the strips to a 1/2 inch overhang.  Moisten the underside of each one with water and tuck it under the bottom crust, pressing to make it adhere.  Crimp or flute the edges if you like. 

Lattice-Top Pie Recipe
Chill and bake the pie:

Lightly cover the assembled pie with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour. After 30 minutes of chilling, set an oven rack on the lowest rung and put a foil-lined baking stone or baking sheet on it. Heat the oven to 425°F.

When the pie has chilled for 1 hour, brush the lattice with the milk and sprinkle on the sugar.

Set the pie directly on the baking stone or sheet. Bake until the juices are bubbling all over (the bubbles should be thick and slow near the pan edges), 40 to 55 minutes. After the first 15 minutes, cover the rim with foil or a pie shield. If the lattice starts to darken too much in the last 10 minutes of baking, cover it loosely with a piece of foil that has a vent hole poked in the center.

Let the pie cool on a rack until the juices have thickened, for 3 hours.

nutrition information (per serving):
Size : based on eight servings; Calories (kcal): 490; Fat (g): fat g 26; Fat Calories (kcal): 230; Saturated Fat (g): sat fat g 16; Protein (g): protein g 5; Monounsaturated Fat (g): 8; Carbohydrates (g): carbs g 62; Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 1; Sodium (mg): sodium mg 180; Cholesterol (mg): cholesterol mg 70; Fiber (g): fiber g 2;

Photo: Scott Phillips

So good!

The taste and crust were perfect but the filling was very thin. Next time I will cook the filling for a bit to make sure it thickens up.

Very good. All my dinner guests were impressed. I used bing cherries and so cut the sugar down to 1/2 cup and added a little extra corn starch.

This makes the classic cherry pie filling and tastes exactly as you would imagine a cherry pie to taste. I always use a around 4c of sour cherries, rather than 3 1/2. We skip the lattice and just do a regular top. More crust that way!

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