A Four Leaf Clover for St. Patty's Day
I was going to make one of Julie Hasson's no bake pies originally as I had a organic pre-made pie crust in the freezer. Then I found huge containers of fresh organic strawberries at Costco and the stage was set. I am kind of embarrassed to admit, but I have never made a strawberry pie. I decided I wanted to make a double crust baked version, but kept finding recipes for single crust non-baked version. So I kind of mixed ideas to come up with this lovely creation.
The "Grand" comes from the fact that I used fresh orange juice and orange zest from our tree for subtle flavoring. Years ago, I fell in love with the strawberry Grand Marnier flavor combination and thought it would be delicious in pie. Oh yeah, I was right. I brought the pie to a friend's house for dinner and it was demolished. Not a scrap left. I think this pie would be lovely with a nice Prosecco or sparkling water with a squeeze of lemon if you are not a drinker.
"Grand" Strawberry Pie
Make One 9-inch pie
2 pounds fresh strawberries, quartered if large, halved if small (about 6 cups)
1/2 cup orange juice
1/2 cup sugar
3 tablespoons arrowroot starch
1 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon vanilla
2 raw pie crust rounds (your favorite recipe, my favorite to use is the Basic Pastry Crust from Veganomicon).
Spray coconut oil (or any other neutrally flavored oil)
Sugar for sprinkling on the top crust
Preheat oven to 400 degrees. Lightly spray 9 inch pie pan with oil.
Place 5 cups fresh strawberries in a large bowl, reserving 1 cup.
In a blender, combine 1 cup strawberries, orange juice, sugar, arrowroot, zest and vanilla until smooth. Place in a small saucepan over medium-low heat. Simmer until thickened, stirring constantly, about 3 minutes. Pour thickened mixture over fresh strawberries and stir until they are evenly coated.
Roll out one pie crust (don't forget to use flour and parchment paper to make rolling a breeze) to about 1 inch larger than the pie pan. Gently press to the bottom of pie pan. Fold edges under and pinch gently to shape edges. Spoon in Strawberry mixture. Roll out second pie crust. Using cookie cutter of your choice, cut out fun shapes and place evenly over the top of the pie. You want to cover at least 2/3 of the pie surface. As an alternative, you can make lattice. I am too impatient for that, so I cheat. Spray top pie dough with a light coating of oil. Sprinkle with a touch of additional sugar. Place in the oven and bake for 35-40 minutes until the crust is slightly browned.
Remove from oven. Let cool slightly, then refrigerate for at least three hours until completely cool before serving.
Watch it disappear!