Pie for Valentine’s Day

Fresh Strawberry Pie

It seems that global warming has given Southern California the gift of fresh strawberries earlier than usual.  So why not take the gift and throw together a Fresh Strawberry Pie. It’s fast, easy and very pretty and red!  Perfect for the holiday, even if your best valentine is yourself.  I happened to make the pie in the photo with a vanilla wafer crumb crust, but you could make your own chocolate crust, either with chocolate wafer cookies or by adding 3 tablespoons cocoa powder to your favorite pie dough recipe.  Don’t forget to blind bake your crust!

This weekend Craftsy is having another big sale.  Use my link to shop on Craftsy through Monday and get discounts to my Perfecting the Pie Crust class and/or many other cooking classes by talented teachers.

Fresh Strawberry Pie

1/2 cup sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/4 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup water
3 pints fresh strawberries, washed and hulls removed
Handful blueberries (optional)
1 tablespoon butter
2 teaspoons lemon juice
9-inch pie crust, blind baked and cooled or any crumb crust baked or chilled

Separate out the largest most beautiful berries to adorn the top of your pie. The rest will be folded into your “Berry Matrix” and poured into the pie.

In a small saucepan mix together the sugar, cornstarch and salt. Add the water and whisk until smooth. Add one cup of the softest, smallest and most juicy of your batch of strawberries to the mixture and use a potato masher to break up the fruit. Cook over medium heat until the mixture boils and thickens. Remove from heat and scrape the “Berry Matrix” into a medium bowl and cool in the refrigerator or over another bowl of ice water. Stir occasionally to speed up the cooling process.

When the Berry Matrix is cold, gently fold the berries into it. Pour the mixture into the cooled pie shell. Arrange the saved berries atop the pie. If you miscalculated and didn’t save enough to completely cover the pie with whole berries, don’t worry. You can always pile or pipe whipped cream either in the middle or around the edge (or both!)

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