Whose bright idea was it to make National Pie Day fall in January? Seriously. Why is National Cherry Pie Day in February and Blueberry Pie Day in April? It makes no sense. You can’t get fresh, sweet cherries in the winter months and the blueberries don’t get sweet until June — that’s a fact! Someone clearly wasn’t wearing their “thinking cap” when they came up with this schedule. In fact, as punishment, they can’t have any of this Summer Cherry Berry Pie!
Ok, my rant has ended. I am making this pie in July. Because the fruit is ripe and sweet and this is the time to make it. (Side note: If you’re reading this and it happens to be February — and you just can’t wait… get some frozen cherries and blueberries — don’t worry, it’ll still be good — they freeze the fruit when it’s ripe– in the summer).
Break out your cherry pitter and get to work — and if you don’t have a cherry pitter, checkout this method for pitting cherries from my friend, Sarah at Champagne Tastes.
Aside from loads of fresh fruit, this pie also has distinct citrusy notes – a little orange and lemon zest really brighten up the filling!
Toss the berries in the cornstarch mixture and set aside while you prep the crust.
Crust. That dreaded word. Not that I don’t love it, I do. I just hate to make it.
So…. for this one, I succumbed to that red box with the pot-bellied dough-boy. Don’t judge. Use one crust for the bottom and cut the other into even strips for a lacy lattice look. In case you don’t have a fancy dough cutter (I don’t) use a pizza cutter against a straight edge for cutting the lattice. Easy peasy.
Fill the pie with the berry mixture.
Weave the lattice.
Fold the excess under the edge of the bottom crust.
Crimp the edges.
Brush the crust with egg wash and sprinkle with demerara sugar.
Isn’t it pretty?
Bake until golden and set.
My filling turned out more liquidy than I like – it’s fresh juicy fruit after all. If that happens to you — you can use a (dishwasher safe) turkey baster to slurp up any excess liquid from between the gaps in the lattice — or very carefully tilt the pie-pan to pour some liquid out. If this is not a concern for you (it wasn’t for my tasters) then let the pie come to room temperature and enjoy it!
Summer Cherry Berry Pie
- 2 9 inch pie crusts
- 12 ounces dark cherries pitted
- 2 1/2 cups blueberries
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 4 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/8 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon orange zest 2 tablespoons juice from the orange
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
- 2 tablespoons orange juice from the zested orange
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- 1 egg beaten with a fork + 2 tablespoons water
- 2 tablespoons demerara sugar or white sugar for decorating
- In a large bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, salt, orange zest, lemon zest, orange juice and almond extract. Add the cherries and blueberries. Toss to combine and set aside for 30 minutes.
- Lay a sheet or two of plastic wrap on a work surface. Place the pie crust on the plastic wrap. Lay another sheet of plastic wrap over the pie crust. Roll the pie crust out to a 12 -13" diameter. Remove the top layer of plastic and transfer the crust to a 9" ceramic or glass pie plate. Press the bottoms and sides firmly into the pie plate. Use a sharp knife to trim the edges and refrigerate.
- Place the second pie crust on the plastic wrap and cover with the second piece of plastic wrap. Roll the second crust out to a 12"-13" diameter. Use a sharp knife or pizza cutter to cut the pastry into even, 3/4" strips. Transfer the crust (plastic wrap and all) to a flat surface and refrigerate.
- Preheat the oven to 400°.
- When the berries have macerated for half an hour, give them a stir to ensure they're well combined with the sugar mixture and transfer the fruit to the pie shell and smooth to an even layer. Lay 5 pieces of pastry strips. evenly spaced over the fruit and pie -- letting the ends hang over the sides of the shell. Rotate the pie plate 90° and begin to weave the lattice with 5 remaining strips of pastry. Tuck the hanging ends under the edge of the bottom crust and press together with a fork or create a fluted edge with your fingers.
- Use a pastry brush to brush the egg wash onto the lattice and edges of the crust. Sprinkle the crust with demerara sugar.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Lay a flat piece of aluminum foil gently over the crust (to prevent over-browning) and continue baking for 40 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool for at least an hour. Serve warm or at room temperature.
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