Recipe from Cook's Illustrated, May/June 2011
Notes: While we were in Montreal, we had the opportunity to partake in some delicious, juicy strawberries. They are so plentiful in the markets and roadside stands at this time of year. And the prices for a flat are so much cheaper than in Ontario. I wanted to showcase these berries in a pure fruit pie, and found this recent Cook's Illustrated recipe.
I made a total of four pies over two days. It's been a while since I made the CI vodka pie crust, so I messed up the first two: I didn't process the dough long enough for it to form big clumps. Instead, I mixed in the remaining flour while it was still crumb-like. This resulted in a cracker-like finished product.
The time-consuming steps in this recipe are in making the quick strawberry jam, because you need to puree the berries and cook them over a stove. But I think the effort is worth it: every bite of the pie delivers pure strawberry flavour. The filling isn't thick and gummy, as is the case with most store-bought strawberry pies. One of the key ingredients, low-sugar pectin, was not available to me, so I tried substituting unflavoured gelatin to make the glaze. I don't think gelatin is the right substitute for pectin here (or maybe I didn't use enough). But I do agree with CI's founder in that a pie filling should be a little juicy.
Two thumbs up for this pie!