How to Make Cherry Pie: Best Homemade Recipe
Fresh cherries are some of the best treats to have in your home from late spring to summer. They are bright red, plump, and juicy fruits that could be used as jams, pickled cherries, cherry ice cream, cherry wine, dressings, and the all-time favorite cherry pie.
Health Benefits of Cherries
Cherries are some of the most versatile and popular fruit treats. Every single cup of raw and sweet cherries is packed with fiber, potassium, vitamin C, manganese, and copper. It can even replace unhealthy energy bars due to its low-calorie content.
As a good source of fiber, it helps promote regular bowel movements as well as keeping your digestive system healthy. Most cherries contain antioxidants, a compound that promotes cell rejuvenation and prevents the multiplication of radical cells.
This fruit is also rich in polyphenols, a substance that prevents inflammation and cell impairments. Adding this to your diet may prevent the development of heart diseases, mental decline, cancer, and diabetes. It can also deter the progression of arthritis and gout.
Inflammatory components in cherries may relieve exercise-induced pain or muscle damage. Tart cherry juices could also aid in muscle recovery and prevent muscle pain for those who are just starting an exercise regimen. Consuming cherries also prevents loss of strength in athletes such as marathon runners or cyclists.
Having trouble sleeping? Tart cherries contain a compound called melatonin, a component that maintains your sleep-wake pattern.
Purchasing the Right Cherries and Preparing the Pie Filling
Tart cherries are abundant during mid-June for warmer climates and July to August for colder areas. After you have made your rounds in the store and purchased this fruit, wash all the cherries including the stem and store them in a loosely closed container in the refrigerator for later use. You can also keep them in the freezer to prolong their freshness. For cherry pie fillings, you need to defrost the cherries first before cooking.
A cherry pie recipe doesn’t have to be complicated or overwhelming. With this recipe, you get a fool-proof delicacy that’s sure to satisfy the palate.
There are two kinds of cherries you can use for fillings: sweet and tart. The Bing and Rainier (sweet cherries) are easier to find while sour cherries are harder to acquire fresh and predominantly available canned. Should you have fresh sour cherries, add about 1/4 cup of sugar to even out the taste.
Related Post: Measuring Cups
The filling is the key to the tastiness of your pie. However, it could be the reason for its sogginess. The standard apple fillings are firmer and less juicy hence easier to cook with a little bit of sugar and cornstarch. On the other hand, peaches, cherries, and plums are stone fruits with juicier content making it harder to place directly in your pies for filing (unless you like it soggy).
So to deflect this, fillings are cooked in advance to take out the juices which result in a firmer and creamier texture. By doing this, you are preventing the crust from sogginess without sacrificing its luscious and velvety texture.
How to Make Cherry Pie Filling
Capacity: 9-inch non-deep dish pie pan
Cooking time: 20 minutes
Kitchen items you’ll need to create the cherry pie from scratch:
- Measuring cups
- Measuring spoons
- Paring knife (for the pie crust)
- 9-inch pie pan (not the dish deep type)
- Large bowl for mixing pie filling ingredients
Related Post: Mixing Bowls
Prepare the following ingredients beforehand to avoid any delays in creating the fillings.
- 3/4 cup of refined sugar
- 1 tablespoon of vanilla extract
- 1/4 teaspoon of salt (kosher)
- 1/4 cup of cornstarch
- 4 1/2 cups of Rainier or Bing cherries (pitted)
- Mix the cornstarch and sugar together on a large saucepan using a whisk. Then add vanilla, salt, and cherries and stir to make sure the cornstarch is mixed evenly. Make sure to whisk thoroughly to ensure a consistent texture of the filling.
- Place the saucepan over medium to high heat until you notice the mixture starts to thicken. Let this simmer for about 8 to 10 minutes.
- Turn off the stove and let the pan cool while you prepare to make the crust. (If you decide to do this at a later time, remove the filling from the pan and place this in an airtight container then refrigerate.)
For the easy cherry pie crust, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- 2 packages of commercial pie dough (usually sold in the market in 14 to 16 ounces). If frozen, thaw before using.
- 1 tablespoon of demerara (or any coarse sugar)
- 1 piece of egg (large)
- 1 tablespoon of water
- While waiting for your cherry filling to cool down, you can proceed to create the pie crusts.
- The rack should be in the middle of the oven with a baking sheet over it. Pre-heat your oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Take the first roll of pie dough and unroll it in the 9-inch pie pan. Press delicately the bottom and along the sides of the plate. Make sure there are no punctures on the dough to avoid spilling.
- Mix the water and egg together. With a clean brush, dip this in the mixture and coat the pie dough. Set aside a small portion to coat the pie crust later.
- Pour out your homemade cherry pie filling in the dough and spread evenly.
- For the crust top, unroll the second pie dough. Sprinkle flour on a smooth surface board and place the pie dough on top. Using the paring knife, cut 1-inch strips. With every strip, you cut, place this on top of the filling. Make sure that each strip is evenly spaced.
- To create a lattice top crust, weave by alternating and folding these strips. These strips can be flimsy so weave delicately to maintain the integrity of the dough. Cut off excess strips and tuck.
- After finishing the top crust, take the remaining egg wash and brush the mixture lightly on the top and edges of the pie especially areas where you tucked in the excess dough. Then sprinkle the demerara generously on the top of the pie.
- Place the pie pan on the baking sheet in the preheated oven and bake for about 40 to 45 minutes. You will notice the filling slowly bubbling inside the crust as it cooks. If you notice the edges of your pie crust quickly browning, just cover this with aluminum foil in the last 10 minutes.
- After cooking, place the pie in a cooling rack. Let it cool for about 4 hours before serving.
This homemade cherry pie recipe is a versatile delicacy you can share with the whole family. Whether it’s for a special occasion or some small gathering over a barbecue, this is the staple dessert everyone will love.
Having guests over? This easy cherry pie recipe can be done one day prior to an event. These pies are best served with some coffee or tea. If you have leftover, you can consume these up to 3 days at room temperature.
After baking, you probably noticed that you have extra fillings on the side of the fridge. But you have no plans of creating more pies any time soon. So what can you do with this homemade pie filling? Here are special desserts where you can use this scrumptious delight.
- Whip up classic festive bars by adding the extra cherry fillings. You can easily create this in 20 minutes.
- Add these fillings over black forest tarts and top it off with chocolate drizzle. It’s best served cold.
- Create crepes in advance and add cherry fillings on top before serving. This would make a wonderful breakfast treat for the family.
- Use these as topping for a homemade cupcake to add aesthetic and flavor to your treats.
- With oeey-gooey goodness, add these fillings in your easy to prepare chocolate pudgy pies in the great outdoors.
- Add cherry fillings on top of dark chocolate flavored waffles to give this delicacy a twist.
Now That You’ve Found the Best Cherry Pie Recipe, What Can You Best Pair It With?
These sweet treats are a welcome sight after a family dinner or comfort food during winter. The cherry pie’s sweetness most often complements main courses such as roasted chicken and seared steak.
If you’re cooking up soups, stews, or grilled red meat, a slice of this fruity pie can enhance its taste. Or after dinner, pair this with a cherry-flavored beer after a hearty meal. This is a welcoming delicacy after such a heavy meal!
If you have a Right Bank Bordeaux or Merlot, have aged cheese for appetizers and the main course of veal, salmon, or game meat complements a slice (or two) of cherry pie afterward.
Rhône or Syrah wine would complement cherry pies after eating dark meat dishes such as boeuf bourguignon, braised meats, and duck. You can also pair this wine over smoked cheese.
- Lucious Cherry Pie – Helen Li