I've said a million times that I love baking, and these past eight weeks have challenged that love. Extreme baking is what I have been doing and I must confess, this kitchen remodel is wearing me down! Some people have asked why in the world I would continue to bake during this crazy time, but the answer is quite easy. Baking is a total stress reliever for me. I'd probably have 20 dozen cookies sitting in my makeshift kitchen right now, if I had more than a toaster oven to bake in....
When I saw that we were baking a cherry pie this week, my first thought was about the time I was a judge for the National Pie Championship in Orlando, Fl. I requested the apple pie table, but...you guessed it, I got cherry pie. 3 hours later and 30 some pies tasted, I was now an expert (with an upset stomach). I swore I would never eat cherry pie again, and I haven't until now.
How could I resist trying Rose's favorite pie. The pie dough and filling are quite straightforward for those who have a fully functioning kitchen. I had a difficult time finding sour cherries and after 4 grocery stores, I settled for frozen dark sweet cherries. My biggest challenge was figuring out how in the world I'm going to bake a pie in such a small toaster oven.
Since I don't have a functioning kitchen, just rolling out the dough presented challenges. My rolling pins, yes plural, are hanging around in some cardboard box and totally MIA. So, I've been improvising. I'm certain when the Klean Kanteen folks were designing water bottles and planning to save the earth from plastic, they never imagined them being used as a rolling pin. ;) BTW, it's best to place parchment on top of the dough when rolling so as to avoid the sticky mess you see below.
Rose provided two options for the pie filling. Of course I chose the one that requires a stove top. So how in the world am I going to pull this off? On top of that, I opened the cornstarch can and....this is what I found....certainly not enough for even the half recipe I planned to make.
Believe it or not, I found an induction burner at Target. This baby works great! Water boils in just minutes. Rose recommends melting the sugar in the juices before adding the cherries, but I was a little frazzled and put everything in the pan and then read the directions...It seemed to work out, but I will definitely follow Rose's directions next time. Unfortunately, I was making this late at night and just had to use what little cornstarch I had with fingers crossed...
After properly cooling the filling, just pour it in the pie shell (I used a 5 inch pot pie pan) and begin the process of making a lattice.
Place in the oven...or toaster oven... The bake time was only about 22 minutes and I didn't need to cover the crust as recommended for the larger pie.
The juice ended up being slightly thinner than it should have been, but I honestly lacked the energy to run to the store for more at 10 pm. I also couldn't bear the thought of washing one more dish, so I chose to plate this delicious pie on one of the thousand paper plates we've added to the local landfill.
Despite all the whining and challenges, I cannot say enough good things about this pie. The cream cheese crust is a total delight and the filling is phenomenal. I sure am glad I broke my 10 year cherry pie strike!
As always, we're not allowed to share recipes, but you can purchase the Baking Bible and make this delicious pie.
So, here's an updated picture of the kitchen. The cabinets and tile are in....now we're waiting for counter tops, appliances, and a back splash. It's finally starting to look like our dream kitchen. :)