Recently my parents dog-sat for me while I was gone for an entire day doing an Atlanta-based scavenger hunt. As a thank you for them doing me the favor on such short notice, I ran to Google for ideas on a recipe. Something new, something light and Spring-y. Something…not difficult. Since I’d made the Lemon Chess Pie, I was thinking something with fruit. Strawberries…because I already had some in my refrigerator. Then it came to me.
This actually isn’t the same pie as the one I brought to my parents. In fact, as usual my mom and dad suffered from the guinea pig phase of my baking; over the last two weeks I ended up making this pie three times, this third being the best revision yet. Frankly? I’m proud of myself *pats self on back*.
What I love most about this pie is its ease-of-cooking to deliciousness ratio; I can’t think of anything else I’ve ever baked that has one quite as high. Plus you can make it even easier by cheating and getting a pre-made crust. No one has to know!
One thing I changed from the original recipe was the crust itself. Instead of using graham cracker crumbs I used vanilla wafers! Handled the same way as a graham cracker crust, it makes the crust a little more vanilla-y and delicious. Also, this ingredient-changing decision had nothing to do with all the moths making their home in my box of graham cracker crumbs.
The filling itself is as simple as cream cheese and whipping cream folded together to make a light and sweet deliciousness. You can go with just vanilla extract, or both vanilla and a splash of almond extract as well. I actually added the almond by accident when, in my hurry to finish the first pie, I reached for the first small brown bottle I saw on my shelf. When what came out of it was clear instead of brown…well, the only real solution was just to add more vanilla. Never a bad thing, right? At least it turned out tasting good! I didn’t even realize I still had almond extract in there…
The strawberries went through several revisions before the one you see on the pie now. If you’re feeling lazy (as I do, sometimes…you may have heard) you can just plop the strawberries whole on top. I think in the end it makes the pie a little more difficult to eat (alright, significantly more) but it’s just as good. I think taking the time to slice them up some is worth your while, though. It’s just so durn pretty.
This recipe gets a huge thumbs-up from me. Enough for eating it three times in succession. Bring it to a party! I promise everybody will love you more for it. ^_^
Adapted from Lulu at Home.
Makes one 9″ pie.