While our vacation was overall quite lovely, it did not get off to what you’d call a rockin’ good start. First off, bad traffic in Manhattan and on the New Jersey Turnpike made the trip take at least an extra two hours. Then, remember that head cold I kept whining about the week before last? Turns out it wasn’t a head cold – nope, it was a nasty double ear infection! I found this out in the ER at 2:30 am the first night of vacation, in near-screaming pain…
But, a wonderful staff treated me quickly and gave me strong pain meds and antibiotics. I immediately felt better and was able to thoroughly enjoy the trip. Many thanks to the Nags Head ER!
Since our little cottage had a pretty well-stocked kitchen and a grill in the backyard, we did lots of cooking and baking. Of course I made yesterday’s cantaloupe sorbet; I also used my homemade Old Bay for some peel and eat shrimp; and we made these shrimp one night.
But one of the more delicious desserts I made was this strawberry pie! The strawberries came from a farmer’s market – they were insane. And I used brown sugar instead of the regular white granulated kind. It made for an earthier and more intense flavor. We shared this pie with Matt’s family who were staying about an hour away from us, and it was a big hit.
A few recipe notes: this pie as written has plenty of strawberries but it’s not a “piled high” pie. I’d recommend upping the strawberry portion of the recipe by one and a half if you want that effect. Also, I must confess here that I used store-bought pie crusts (the rolled, two-to-a-package kind from the refrigerated section of the grocery store). My well-stocked kitchen wasn’t quite stocked with a rolling pin. But were I making this at home, I’d probably use this pie dough recipe.
Source: heavily adapted from A Year of Pies by Ashley English
2 (9-inch) unbaked pie crusts, store-bought or homemade
2 ½ lbs. fresh strawberries
3 tbs cornstarch
2 tbs water
2 tbs vanilla extract
¼ cup packed brown sugar
Pinch of salt
1 large egg yolk
1 tbs whole milk
Fit 1 pie crust into a regular 9-inch pie plate. Trim the overhang if necessary. Chill in the refrigerator for a good 20 minutes.
Meanwhile make the filling. Wash the strawberries and drain well in a colander or blot dry with paper towels. Cut off the green tops and quarter the strawberries.
Mix the cornstarch and water in a small bowl; whisk to combine until the cornstarch is dissolved.
Toss the strawberries in a large bowl with the vanilla, sugar, salt, and the cornstarch mixture.
Remove the pie plate from the refrigerator and pour the strawberry mixture into the pie crust. Top with the second pie crust and crimp the edges together.
With a sharp paring knife, make 4 slits in the center of the pie, to allow steam to escape. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg yolk and milk. Brush the entire top of the pie with the egg wash.
Place the pie in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes.
While it’s chilling, preheat the oven to 375 F. Transfer the pie to a baking sheet (it will bubble over during baking). Bake for 55 to 60 minutes, until the crust is golden and the juices are bubbling in the center of the pie. Cool at least 3 hours before serving.