Strawberry balsamic pie

Strawberry Balsamic Pie

Makes one nine-inch pie

Filling

Ingredients

  • 4 cups (1 quart) strawberries, fresh, hulled and halved (or frozen, halved)
  • 3/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar
  • 1/3 cup cornstarch
  • Egg wash (1 egg beaten with 1 tsp water and a pinch of salt)
  • Sanding sugar or granulated sugar, as needed (optional)

Filling

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees and set the rack in the lowest position.
  2. In a medium bowl, combine the strawberries, granulated sugar, and vinegar. Toss to combine. Allow the strawberries to rest for about 30 minutes, until they have released their juice.
  3. Strain the juice into a small bowl. Add the cornstarch, and whisk to combine, to create a slurry (if necessary, add water 1 tbsp at a time until there is enough liquid). Pour the slurry into a medium pot and cook, stirring constantly, until the slurry has thickened, about 5 minutes. Add the strawberry mixture to the pot and cook until the berries are well-coated and begin to soften, 1 to 2 minutes. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
  4. Transfer the mixture to the prepared bottom crust (recipe below).
  5. Roll out the top crust to 1/8 inch thick. Using a pastry wheel or a sharp knife, cut twelve 1-inch-wide strips of dough. Brush the edge of the bottom crust with water, and gently weave and arrange the dough strips on top of the filling to create a lattice top. Trim the edges flush with the edge of the bottom crust and press them to seal. Turn and decoratively crimp the edges. (Alternately, use a pie top cutter to create a decorative crust similar to the photo.)
  6. Brush the top crust with egg wash and sprinkle with sanding sugar or granulated sugar if desired.
  7. Place the pie on a baking sheet. Bake until the filling is bubbly and thick, 45 to 50 minutes. Remove the pie from the oven and place it on a cooling rack. Let cool for 2 to 3 hours. The filling will continue to thicken and set as the pie cools.

All Butter Pie Crust

Makes two 11-inch rounds

Ingredients

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
  • 11 tablespoons unsalted butter, cold, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
  • 1/2 cup water, ice cold, more as needed

Hand Method

Directions

  1. Combine the flour, salt, and sugar in a large bowl and scatter the butter pieces over the dry ingredients.
    2. Using a pastry blender, or, rubbing the mixture between your fingers, work quickly to cut or rub the butter into the dry ingredients until it is in pieces the size of small hazelnuts.
    3. Sprinkle half the ice-cold water over the butter mixture. Using your hands or a rubber spatula, lightly toss the dry mixture until the dough just begins to hold together. Continue to add water in small amounts until it becomes a rough but pliable dough. The dough should just hold together when pressed to the side of the bowl.
    4. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and divide into two portions. Shape the dough into 5- to 6-inch diameter flat, round disks and wrap them tightly in plastic wrap. Chill the dough in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes to two hours or preferably overnight.

Food Processor Method

Directions

  1. Combine the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of the food processor fitted with the steel cutting blade and process for a few seconds to combine.
  2. Place the bowl in the freezer for 30 minutes, or until the ingredients and the bowl are well chilled. With the food processor off, add half of the cold butter and pulse 3–5 seconds, or until rough and pebbly. Add the remaining cold butter and pulse 4–5 seconds, or until the mixture appears rough, with irregular pieces of butter approximately the size of small walnuts.
  3. Sprinkle approximately half of the ice-cold water over the dry mixture with the food processor off. Pulse the processor for 3–5 seconds, or until just combined. Check the dough by pressing it to the side of the bowl; if it does not hold together, add a small amount of the water and check again. When the mixture is pressed to the side of the bowl and it presses together and stays together, remove it from the bowl and turn it out onto a lightly floured work surface. Do not allow the mixture to form a ball or mass of dough in the bowl; if you allow this to occur, you have overmixed the dough and it will be tough.
  4. Divide the dough into two portions and shape it into 5- to 6-inch diameter flat, round disks. Wrap the disks tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes to two hours or preferably overnight, or until firm.

Stand Mixer Method

Directions

  1. Combine the flour, salt, and sugar in the bowl of the mixer and place in the freezer for 30 minutes, or until the bowl and ingredients are well chilled. Remove the bowl from the freezer and place on the mixer. Using the paddle attachment, blend the dry ingredients on low speed for 15 seconds, or until combined. With the mixer off, add the butter pieces to the mixing bowl and then combine on medium speed for 1–2 minutes, or until the butter is in pieces no larger than small walnuts, but no smaller than peas.
  2. Sprinkle approximately half of the ice-cold water over the dry mixture and blend on low speed for 30–60 seconds, or until just combined. Continue to add the liquid in small amounts until the mixture transitions from a slightly powdery appearance with chunks of butter, to gravelly rough dough. When the dough just holds together when pressed to the side of the bowl, remove from the bowl and turn out onto a lightly floured work surface. At this stage, do not add too much liquid or overwork the dough, as it will cause your crust to become tough.
  3. Divide the dough into two portions and shape it into 5- to 6-inch diameter flat, round disks. Wrap the disks tightly in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for at least 45 minutes to two hours or preferably overnight, or until firm.

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