Cherry Pie

Finally, I have found time to share my excitement over my recent hand-picked, homemade cherry pie. I confess, I didn't make the crust. After pitting cherries for 2 hours, I was just about over it. I have no idea what kind of cherries these are but they were tart as all get-out. I had to use 1 1/4 cups of sugar for one pie! I picked them off my neighbors tree with my husband and daughters. I suppose I could ask them what kind of cherries they are....I'll get back to you on that.

I also made some cherry preserves with an accidental purchase of instant pectin. What the hell is this stuff anyway?! Cherries need to be cooked a bit to break down their "crispness." I gave it a shot and, after tasting it the next day, decided to try an experiment. I dumped every jar of cherry preserves out and cooked that mess. I cooked it until it looked right. For those of you needing an exact recipe...I can't help you here. Well, actually I can..... don't use instant pectin. After cleaning my jars again (thank goodness for dishwasher sterlization), I refilled. All is right again in cherry preserves land. Instant pectin, my a**.

Wow, that's a first...two curse words in one blog. It's about a thousand degrees here right now. Maybe it's bringing out my red-neckness. Not anything a little cherry preserves can't fix.

Cherry Pie
Yield: 1 deep-dish 9-inch pie

2 1/2 pounds pitted tart cherries
3/4-1 1/4 cups sugar, depending on tartness
1/8-1/4 tsp. almond extract
3 Tbsp. corn starch
2 sheets prepared pie dough or homemade

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Toss the cherries with the sugar, almond extract, and corn starch. Place one pie round in the bottom of a 9-inch pie dish and cut to fit. Pour in the cherries and top with a lattice top or just another pie dough round. Trim to fit and cut 6 slits (if using a whole pie dough round). Bake for 30 minutes then reduce the heat to 325 degrees and cook for another 30-40 minutes, covering with foil if the edges begin to brown too much. Let set for at least 2-3 hours before serving.

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