Now this might just be one of my proudest baking achievements since I conquered macarons a few months ago. Seriously, I still can't believe I made this!
A few weeks ago our family bought a massive amount of cherries from the Okanagan, and the idea of a cherry pie just kept popping up in my mind. I decided to finally make one on a hot and humid Sunday afternoon, and as I was digging around in the cupboard I found a gem of a pie plate, complete with a recipe for a lattice cherry pie on the bottom! Although I didn't follow that recipe at all, it still inspired me to make this pie with a lattice crust.
I know what you're thinking right now.... "yikes, a lattice crust? that's way too fancy/hard/time-consuming for me". Right? But I'm here to tell you that it is way easier than you think it is, and you can totally do it!
P.S. Are you ready for a bajillion photos?
Lattice Cherry Pie
Pastry recipe from: Company's Coming - Desserts
(Yields enough pastry for 4 pies)
1) Mix together flour, salt, baking powder and brown sugar in a large bowl.
2) Cut up lard and add to dry ingredients.
3) Using a pastry cutter (or a plain old fork works as well), cut in lard until your mixture is crumbly.
4) Break your egg into a liquid measuring cup and beat well.
5) Add vinegar to the measuring cup.
6) Add very cold water to the measuring cup, until the mixture measures to 1 cup.
7) Pour liquid mixture over flour mixture slowly, and stir.
8) Use your hands to work the mixture together until it no longer crumbles apart. This is where experience will come in, as you don't want to overmix the dough! Once you make it a couple of times, you'll get the feel of it.
9) Divide into 4 equal parts. Each part will make one pie, so you can choose to use it all at once, store some of the dough in the fridge* for up to 2 weeks, or pop some of into the freezer for later!
*If you do refrigerate your dough overnight (or for a few days), be sure to take it out at least an hour before you roll out it. Otherwise it will be too stiff!
5 cups flour
2 tsp salt
1 tsp baking powder
3 tbsp brown sugar
1 lb lard (or vegetable shortening)
2 tbsp vinegar
Assembling the Lattice Crust
1) Take approximately an eighth of your dough (if you made the full pastry recipe), and roll it out in a circle until it's about 1/8" thick. Remember to always start your rolling pin in the middle of your dough, and roll it away from you. Turn your dough and repeat - no back and forth motion! You want your dough circle to be big enough to cover the bottom of your pie plate, and to cover the outside edge at least a half an inch.
2) Gently lay out the dough circle into the bottom of the pie plate. (Rolling it onto your rolling pin and then unrolling it onto the pie plate makes this a bit easier!)
3) Fill your pie plate with cherry pie filling (either from a can, or you can use the recipe below!).
4) Take another eight of your pastry dough, and repeat step one.
5) Now, this is where it gets a bit trickier! Just take a deep breath, and let's do this!
6) Grab a pizza cutter or sharp knife, and cut the crust into even strips. Wide, skinny, whatever your heart desires, as long as they're approximately equal to each other.
7) Using every other strip, lay half of the strips onto your pie. *See picture below for clarification.
8) Very gently, fold half of the strips back on themselves.
9) Lay a long strip of crust across the pie, so that it lies over half of the strips. Fold the strips from step 8 back down.
10) Fold the rest of the original strips back on themselves, and add another strip of crust over these. Fold the strips back down.
11) Continue latticing your pie until you've reached the edge, and then repeat on the other half. **Pictures are probably more helpful than the instructions - seeing is believing people!
12) Congratulate yourself for doing a great job. Then, wet the edge of your crust with a tiny bit of water, and gently press each lattice stip down onto the edge.
13) Trim off excess dough, and make sure all lattice strips are firmly secured.
14) Optional braided crust: Roll out dough into a long, skinny strip, about 1/2" thick. Cut into three strips of equal width. Press the ends together, and very gently start braiding. Try not to move each strip more than necessary, and use your fingers to position and snug up the braid as you go. It gets easier as you work down the strips. At the end of the braid, wet your fingers and run them along your crust, and then gently press your braid onto the edge. *Repeat until your pie has a braid all along its edge - this may take 2 or 3 braids.
15) Bake at 425 degrees for the first 15 minutes, and then reduce heat to 350 degrees for 30-40 minutes until nice and bubbly.
Homemade Cherry Pie Filling
recipe by: Kelsey Siemens
yields: filling for one 9" pie
1) Combine cherries, water, lemon juice, sugar and cornstarch in a large saucepan over medium heat.
2) Allow the mixture to come to a boil, and then reduce heat to low and let simmer for about 10 minutes; or until the filling has thickened. Remove from heat.
3) Allow the filling to cool slightly before using as a pie filling (or as ice cream topping!).
5 cups fresh pitted cherries, sliced in half or quarters
1/2 cup water
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1/2 cup sugar* (this will vary with how sweet or sour your cherries are - I used sweet ones!)
3 tablespoons cornstarch