Whether it's cherries straight off the tree or from the market, I can't resist, I'll never say no and I'll go get as much as I can. Now in the full bursting season and when cherries are as juicy and sweet as they could be, I make my cherry pies. Lots of cherry pies! Actually that's all I've been doing these days. I stop only when cherries are no longer on trees and then, I wait another year to make more. So go get your cherry pitter friends, it's time now!
... and when a delicious pie is served on a pretty ceramic, like the one you see up there, it becomes even more irresistible.
Giorgia Brunelli is the artist of this lovely plate. She lives in the woods and is inspired by the nature that surrounds her. Each of her objects have an intrinsic poetic spirit that brings a lovely atmosphere on your table. When you see her work you can tell she puts her heart into it and these are people I admire. Those that do things with a passion. Go take a look for yourself www.giovelab.it .
1 kg fresh cherries, stoned
2 heaped tbsp sugar
1/2 lemon juice
1 vanilla bean
2 tbsp maize starch
350g flour, plus extra for rolling
200g cold butter
2 tbsp sugar, plus extra for finishing touch
Put the cherries, sugar and vanilla bean in a saucepan and cook over low heat for about 4 minutes, add the lemon juice and cook 1 minute. With the use of a colander, drain the cherries over a wide bowl so that the juice is separated from the cherries. Allow to cool.
Make the pastry either by hand or with a food processor. I used a food processor. Blitz the flour, sugar and butter until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs. Add the egg while the food processor is running. As soon as the mixture starts to come together, transfer to a working surface and quickly form a ball, without kneading. Divide the ball in two pieces, one should be slightly larger. Place in the fridge for about 5 minutes. On a lightly floured surface roll out the larger ball to fit and slightly overhang a 23 cm round pie dish. Fill the pie with the drained cherries.
Add the maize starch to the juice you've previously separated from the cherries and whisk until the liquid absorbs the starch, leaving no lumps behind. Pour the juice evenly over the cherries within the pie shell.
Roll out the smaller ball and gently cover the pie. Make a small hole in the center and glaze with the beaten egg and sprinkle some sugar on top.
Bake in a preheated oven for 40 minutes at 200°C.
Allow the pie to cool before serving or serve cold.