Accompanying article: Cherries — A Natural Remedy for Aches & Pains
For all the pleasure it brings, homemade cherry pie isn't difficult to make. And when made with a natural sweetener, organic butter and a wholesome piecrust it's something that money can't buy. If you are using frozen cherries, let them defrost until the fruit separates easily.
A white flour crust is light in texture, but it lacks flavor. On the other hand, a crust of whole-wheat pastry flour is more substantial and flavorful. For the best of both, evenly blend both flours for a tasty but still delicate crust.
1 cup organic white flour
1 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon sea salt
3/4 cup unsalted organic butter, well chilled
Approximately 5 tablespoons ice water
4 cups sour cherries, rinsed and pitted
2 tablespoons flour, tapicoa flour or organic cornstarch
1 ¼ cups organic, unrefined sugar (Rapadura)
2 drops almond extract
2 tablespoons unsalted butter, chopped
Measure flours and salt into a mixing bowl and toss with fingers to blend thoroughly. Cut butter into 1/4-inch cubes and add to flour mixture. With fingertips, quickly and deftly rub the butter into the flour to make a dry, crumbly mixture.
Sprinkle 6 tablespoons of ice water over the mixture. Using a fork, rapidly stir the dough until it gathers into clumps. If needed, add additional ice water to hold dough together. Gently divide dough and form into two disks. Wrap in plastic film and chill for 10 minutes.
Drain cherries and reserve ¼ cup of their juice. Combine flour with reserved juice and almond extract and mix until smooth. Stir in sugar. Gently blend sugar with fruit and allow to stand for 15 minutes. Taste and, if necessary, increase sugar.
Preheat oven to 450 °F.
Roll out each piece of chilled dough on a lightly floured surface to a circle large enough to cover a 9" pie plate. Use one circle to line a 9" pie pan.
Pour fruit into pie shell and dot with butter. Cover with top crust. Prick top. Bake for 10 minutes in pre-heated 450 °F. oven, and then reduce heat to 350 °F and bake about 40 minutes longer or until golden.
May you be well nourished,