Once-A-Year Cherry Pie
from the How to Bake cookbook by Nick Malgieri
1 recipe pie dough for a two-crust pie
3 pints of fresh sour cherries, stemmed, rinsed, and picked over.
3/4 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons water
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
2 tablespoons butter
Egg wash: 1 egg well beaten with a pinch of salt
1 teaspoon sugar for top of pie
Prepare and chill dough. Remove the pits from the cherries and put cherries in a bowl. A paper clip works well to pit the cherries. Drain the cherry juice that collected in the bowl into a saucepan. Add 1 cup of cherries and the sugar. Bring to a simmer over low heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is melted and the mixture is very liquid, about 5 minutes.
Combine cornstarch and water in a small bowl and whisk the cherry and sugar mixture into it. Return to the pan and cook, stirring constantly over low heat until it comes to a boil, thickens, and becomes clear. If it doesn’t become clear, cook a bit longer until it does. Pour into a large bowl and add the almond extract, cinnamon, and butter, stir well. Mix in remaining cherries.
Set oven racks to upper and lower thirds of the oven. Preheat to 400 degrees.
Roll out the bottom crust and arrange in the pie pan. Pour the cooled filling into the bottom crust. Prepare the lattice top crust and flute the edge of the pie. Carefully brush it with the egg wash and sprinkle with sugar.
Place the pie on the lower rack of the oven and lower the temperature to 375 degrees. Bake for about 40 minutes, until the crust is baked through and a deep golden brown and filling is gently bubbling. If the top crust is not colored sufficiently after 30 minutes, move the pie to the upper rack.
Cool the pie on a rack.