Cherries and Pie

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Know what? I use to hate cherries. I remember trying one when I was about 12. It tasted terribly sour and I was thereafter convinced that cherries were an awful fruit that no one ever ought to eat. Now, in spite of that, over the years I have had two or three cherry desserts. Desserts I partook of simply to be polite. Desserts that while sweet (unlike my first experience with a cherry) were texturally nauseating. Literally painful for me to chew. However, I am a person who has vowed to keep trying the disliked foods of my past, just in case my taste buds mature. Plus, the thought occurred to me, that perhaps I had only ever eaten canned cherry dishes. So when I saw these beautiful sweet cherries on sale yesterday I had to buy some.

And what better dish to make when trying a fresh baked cherry for the first time than a simple pie? Plus I'd been wanting to make pie for weeks. There is just something wonderful about pie. Making and perfecting the crust and filling is very therapeutic for me. It's my favorite dessert to make. I put a favorite, Buttermilk Pie, on hold for this cherry pie but I'm sure I'll get around to that one all too soon.

For the crust I added a sugary milk wash and sprinkled sliced almonds over the top. And just look at that flakiness. I use the simplest of pie crust recipes but it never fails me and is wonderfully buttery.

Flaky Buttery Pie Crust

1 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. salt
1/2 cup chilled, unsalted butter
3-4 Tbsp. ice water

*Whisk the flour and salt together in a bowl. Cut in the butter until mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Drizzle ice water over the flour mixture and toss with a fork to moisten. Gently gather the dough together and roll out on a floured surface. Double this recipe to make a top crust.

And so, when it comes to cherries, I've discovered that sweet ones are actually very good raw. I've also discovered that while canned, baked cherries make me want to puke, fresh baked cherries have a lovely flavor and texture. Here's to more cherry pies to come over the years.


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