This year, Tim and I kept our travel within the States, and it’s been great to finally visit cities that have been on our list for a while. This strawberry pie-tart was baked in Fayetteville, NC and was made with strawberries we picked from my first trip ever to a strawberry patch.
My big basket of strawberries!
The freshly picked and washed strawberries.
It’s a strawberry pie-tart because quite frankly, it came out extremely tart, and from appearances, it looks more like a tart although it was supposed to be a pie. Our gracious hosts, the Tsai family, still ate it, and with some vanilla ice cream it turned out to be a nice summer treat. Next time I make this, I think I’ll keep some fresh strawberries to top the pie with.
In addition to feasting on Carolina bbq (and hush puppies) and visiting Tim’s old neighborhood, our wonderful hosts even took us on a tour of Fort Bragg where we got to visit the commissary! Having no experience with military culture, I expected to see aisles upon aisles of MREs, but alas, we found none.
I’m not ready for summertime be over, so I’m just going to hold onto these warm memories with dear friends. (Thanks for the great time Al, Amy, Noah, Ellie and baby girl Tsai!)
2 quarts fresh strawberries, washed, hulled and sliced in half
1 cup sugar
pinch of salt
3 tablespoons cornstarch
pinch of cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon of vanilla extract
3/4 cup water
1 prebaked pie shell (recipe below)
1. In a medium saucepan, combine strawberries, sugar, salt, cornstarch, cinnamon and water. Place over medium heat and bring to a boil, stirring frequently.
2. Reduce heat and let strawberry mixture simmer until thickens, for about 10 minutes. Pour mixture into pie shell and chill in refrigerator for several hours.
3. Serve chilled with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.
from Cook’s Illustrated
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour , plus more for rolling out the dough
1/2 teaspoon table salt
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold, cut into 1/4-inch pieces
4-5 tablespoons ice water
1. Mix together flour, salt, and sugar in a medium bowl. Scatter butter pieces over flour mixture, tossing to coat with flour. Cut butter into flour with pastry cutter and continue cutting in until flour is pale yellow and resembles coarse cornmeal, with butter bits no larger than small peas.
2. Sprinkle 4 tablespoons ice water over mixture. With blade of rubber spatula, using folding motion to mix. Press down on mixture with broad side of spatula until dough sticks together, adding up to 1 tablespoon more ice water if it will not come together. Shape dough into ball, squeezing two or three times with hands until cohesive, then flatten into 4-inch-wide disk. Dust lightly with flour, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate at least 30 minutes, or up to 2 days, before rolling.
3. Remove dough from refrigerator; let stand at room temperature to soften slightly, about 10 minutes if dough has chilled for 30 minutes or 20 minutes if it has chilled overnight. Roll dough on lightly floured work surface or between two sheets plastic wrap to a 12-inch disk about 1/8-inch thick. Fold dough in quarters, then place dough point in center of pie pan. Unfold dough. Alternatively, roll dough in 2-gallon zipper-lock bag to a 12-inch disk about 1/8-inch thick. Cut away top of bag. Grasping bottom, flip dough into pie pan and peel off bag bottom.
4. Working around circumference of pan, press dough carefully into pan corners by gently lifting dough edges with one hand while pressing around pan bottom with other hand . Refrigerate pie shell for 40 minutes and then freeze for 20 minutes.
5. Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 375 degrees. Press doubled 12-inch square of aluminum foil inside dough shell; evenly distribute 1 cup or 12 ounces ceramic or metal pie weights over foil. Bake, leaving foil and weights in place, until dough dries out, about 17 minutes. Carefully remove foil and weights by gathering sides of foil and pulling up and out. For fully baked crust, continue baking until deep golden brown, about 15 minutes more. Transfer to wire rack to cool.