Parfait! Fruit Basket Pie

FruitBasketPieDonebfLOWhat could be more fitting for The Fourth than a slice o’ pie?

Well, sure, a couple of steaks the size of a 59 Caddy, an ice cold martini, and fireworks just outside your window for your general amusement…

FUN FACT: our apartment on Sheridan Road in Chicago was in a high rise across the street from: (1)the lake, and (2) a kinda hoity-toity equestrian club. From our not too, too high balcony; we could watch the fireworks at Navy Pier (from a distance) every week and, on July Fourth, watch the SPECTACULAR fireworks from the club across the street as if they were set off for our own, personal enjoyment. Nice.

FuitBasketPieStraightLOBack to the pie.

I first wrote about this pie (and the tasty, tasty crust) last June, and preparations for gatherings this holiday weekend have me thinking I maybe shoulda picked up some of those lovely farm-canned berries and such in Michigan last week.

The original recipe came to me via bluwmongoose on the flickr vintage advertising site, and was designed to tout the joys and virtues of using Crisco in your pie crusts.

I didn’t do the basket weave-y top crust thing – going for the classic (and, ermmm, easier) flat top crust, but can tell you that it IS a pretty nice pie crust – and the filling’s not too, too bad, either!

•3/4 cup Crisco
•2-1/4 cup sifted flour
•1 tsp salt
•1/4 cup water

Fruit Filling:
•4 cups drained sour cherries
•1 cup drained cubed pineapple
•1 cup sugar
•2 tbsp cornstarch
•2 tbsp flour
•1/4 tsp salt

For the crust, sift the flour and salt into a bowl, then take out 1/3 cup and set aside

Cut the Crisco into remaining flour with knives or forks.

Here’s the deal – my mom probably did the sifting and the two-knives cutting thing, and she made a darned fine pie crust. BUT! She didn’t have a Cuisinart. Fit your trusty food processor with the metal blade, add the flour and salt and pulse that puppy a couple of times to get things all nice and sifty. Remove that 1/3 cup, then, drop chunks of Crisco into the bowl and pulse again to cut in, just until the pieces are the size of small peas.

Mix the remaining 1/3 cup of flour with the 1/4 cup of water to make a paste and add to the flour/Crisco mixture. Mix and shape into a ball.

Lightly roll half of dough into a 12” circle about 1/8” thick. Place in a pie pan and fill with fruit filling.

For the fruit filling: mix the sugar, flour, cornstarch and salt together, then stir into drained fruits and place in lined pie pan.

Roll out the other half of dough into another 12” circle and cut into 1” strips. Weave strips closely together on top of a 10 inch circle drawn on wax paper (if any of you think I am going to do this, you don’t know me very well – a simple top crust will be just fine for this household, thankyouverymuch). Place paper and pastry on top of fruit and remove paper. Fold bottom pastry up over rough edges and crimp.

Bake in a preheated 425º oven for 15 minutes, then reduce heat to 400º and bake another 30 minutes until crust is brown.

I said it before and I’ll say it again: Nice pie!

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