Sweet Cherry Pie

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It’s been a weird season for fruit here. The cold spring has put some crops off by a couple of weeks, meaning here it is in mid July and we can still get fresh, sweet cherries in the market. I apologize in advance if cherries are no longer available where you are. I just thought this pie was too good not to share.

Most commercial cherry pies, and the cherry pies my grandmother used to make for us growing up, are made with sour cherries, which are bright, bright red, and almost impossible to find fresh. Although we have generous neighbors with cherry trees, we’ve never thought to make a pie with sweet cherries until now.

My friend Maria served me a piece of her homemade pie made with sweet cherries, and wow, I couldn’t wait to make one for myself. I think what makes it work is not adding too much sugar (the cherries are already naturally sweet), and including some almond extract. There’s something magical about the flavors combination of cherries and almonds (see our cherry clafouti). By the way, it helps to have a good cherry pitter. Those pits can be rather time consuming to remove.

Sweet Cherry Pie Recipe

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  • Yield: Makes 8 servings.

We've used 1/2 cup of sugar for the filling, which results in a pie not overly sweet. You may want to use more or less sugar, depending on how sweet you would like your pie to be, and how sweet your cherries are.

Ingredients

  • 5 cups sweet cherries, pitted
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon almond extract
  • 2 Tbsp lemon juice
  • 3 Tbsp corn starch
  • 1 Tbsp of butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1 egg
  • Coarse sugar for sprinkling

Method

1 Place the pitted cherries, sugar, almond extract, lemon juice and corn starch in a large bowl. Toss until the cherries are well coated with the sugar and other ingredients.

2 On a lightly floured clean surface, roll out the bottom crust. Form it into a 9 or 10-inch pie pan. Using kitchen scissors, trim the edges so that they extend beyond the edge of the pie pan by 1 inch. Place in the refrigerator while you roll out the top crust.

3 Roll out the top crust to about the same size as the bottom crust. If you want to make a lattice top (it's pretty and it's easy to do) follow these instructions for making a lattice pie crust. Place the filling in the pie plate. Dot with small dabs of butter. Cover with the top crust. Trim the edges. Crimp to seal the edges together. Score the top crust with cuts so that the steam can escape while the pie is cooking (unnecessary if you are making a lattice crust). Refrigerate for 30 minutes before cooking.

4 Optional egg wash In a small bowl, whisk the egg with a tablespoon of water or milk. Use a pastry brush to brush over the top crust. Sprinkle the top with coarse sugar.

5 Preheat the oven to 425°F. Place the pie in the middle rack, with a baking sheet on the rack below to catch any pie drippings. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the temp to 350°F and cook for 35 to 45 minutes longer, or until the crust is nicely browned and the filling is thick and bubbly.

Allow to cool completely before serving.

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Showing 4 of 40 Comments

  • JP

    how much is 1 cup of cherries in grams?

  • Michelle

    I made this yesterday and love it!!! We have a large sweet cherry tree in our yard and this is a great way of using some of them up (there are so many that they are going bad before we can use/eat them all. I’m going to freeze some today.) This pie is juicy, but refrigerating overnight helped to thicken the juices. I didn’t have a mushy crust problem like some. I love the flavor of this- not too sweet at all; very enjoyable. Once those pits are out, (ha ha) this comes together quickly!

  • Janne Jackson

    Made this pie as it looked great on the picture and we had so many cherries left over from our pickings BUT it was very liquidy. Very disappointed as I followed the instructions. Even being in the refrigerator overnight did nothing except make the pastry mushy.

  • Crystal

    Do I need to cut the cherries in half or keep them whole?

  • Tana

    Thank you for posting this recipe. My husband declared he’s had sweet cherry pie at a truck stop. I’ve never heard of sweet cherry pie and when we lived in PA, where they were more readily available, I was informed you didn’t make pie from them so I didn’t try. I will have to try this since my husband prefers a sweeter pie, but I don’t like to add the sugar necessary to make a sour cherry pie that sweet.

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