To Pit or Not to Pit

By on June 17, 2019

Easy, Homemade Cherry Pie

  • PREP 
  • COOK 
  • TOTAL 

Making cherry pie is easy – all you need is a little patience when pitting the cherries. We promise it’s worth it. You can use sweet cherries, sour cherries or a combination of both, just remember to dial the sugar back or up depending on what you choose.

Or you can do like the French and leave the pits in.  In fact that’s how I first discovered this pie.  I was in rural France at an outdoor cafe and saw the casual French spitting seeds into the gravel.  May Oui!  Oh those Frenchies.

So now,  ever year, when my home grown cherries ripen,  I pick them all at once, rinse and drain them then make this pie – pits and all.  Yum.

You can buy a cherry pitter, however, if you do not have one try using the thicker round end of a chopstick to push the pits out of the middle of each cherry. Another option is to push each cherry down onto a piping tip. The sugar amount for this recipe varies depending on how sweet your cherries are. Add to your taste. We like to use fresh cherries for this, but you can use canned or frozen.

Buy a Cherry Pitter from Amazon HERE:

Cherry Pitter – 6 Cherries, Professional Cherry Stone Remover with Pits and Juice Container byi Fruit Tools, Red Color

Price:$10.88  FREE One-Day

 


  • Pit up to 6 cherries in a single motion with this unique cherry pitter remover tool
  • Counters and hands stay mess-free with the removable base that catches pits and juice
  • Non-Skid base keeps the pitter stable, while zinc prongs push pits through Disassembles for cleaning and locks tightly for storage
  • Size: 8″ long by 4.25″ Wide; dishwasher safe

 Report incorrect product information.

 

One 9-inch pie, approximately 8 servings

YOU WILL NEED

Chilled pie dough for top and bottom 9-inch pie (see our pie crust recipe)

4 1/2 cups pitted fresh cherries, see note if using frozen or canned (2 1/2 pounds, unpitted)

1/4 cup (30 grams) cornstarch

2/3 to 3/4 cup (135 to 150 grams) sugar, adjusted accordingly to sweetness of cherries

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/4 teaspoon almond extract

1 tablespoon lemon juice

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon cold unsalted butter, cut into small squares

1 egg yolk

1 tablespoon heavy or whipping cream

Additional sugar for topping crust (coarse sugar is a nice option)

DIRECTIONS

    • MAKE FILLING

Heat oven to 400 degrees F.

In a large bowl, stir sugar, cornstarch, vanilla extract, almond extract, lemon juice and the salt together then add cherries. Gently toss to combine. Set aside.

      • PREPARE AND FILL CRUST

Remove half of dough from refrigerator and let sit at room temperature for 5 minutes. On a lightly floured surface, roll out dough to a 13-inch (1/8-inch thick) circle. (Occasionally, check if dough is sticking to the surface — add a small amount of flour when necessary).

Check for size by inverting pie dish over dough round. Look for a 1-inch edge around the pie dish. Carefully press the dough into the dish.

Spoon cherry pie filling into pie crust. Discard most of the liquid pooled at the bottom of the bowl. Dot filling with little squares of cold butter.Cherry-Pie-Recipe-Step-1

        • TOP PIE

Roll out second half of dough then top pie. Use a knife or pair of kitchen scissors to trim dough to within 3/4-inch of the edge of the dish.

Fold edges of top crust underneath edges of bottom crust, pressing the edge to seal it so that it creates a thicker, 1/4-inch border that rests on the lip of the dish. Then, crimp edges by pressing the pointer finger of one hand against the edge of the dough from the inside of the dish while gently pressing with two knuckles of the other hand from the outside (see photo, we know that was wordy — you can see us do it in our pie crust recipe video, too). Refrigerate dough at least 20 minutes or freeze for 5 minutes before baking.Cherry-Pie-Recipe-Step-2

          • BAKE PIE

Just before baking, make egg wash by whisking egg yolk and cream together in a small bowl. Use a pastry brush to brush over the top crust. Then, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of sugar. Then, cut 3 to 4 slits in top of pie.

Bake for 20 minutes then reduce oven temperature to 350 degrees F and bake an additional 30 to 40 minutes longer, or until the crust is golden and the filling is thick and bubbling. Cool pie at least 2 hours, preferably 3, before cutting to allow filling to set.

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About Linda Eckhardt

Linda West Eckhardt, is an award winning journalist, food writer, and nutritionist. Her more than 20 cookbooks have garnered prizes including the James Beard prize for the best cookbook for a text she wrote with her daughter, Katherine West DeFoyd, entitled Entertaining 101, Doubleday. Their follow-up book, Stylish One Dish Dinners, Doubleday, was also nominated for a James Beard prize. Their next book, The High Protein Cookbook, Clarkson Potter, remains a best seller after 12 years. That book was designed to accompany low carb diet plans. Her ground-breaking book, Bread in Half The Time, Broadway Books, was named the Best Cookbook in America by the prestigious IACP, The Julia Child award. Her award winning radio work with Jennifer English, for a national show on the Food and Wine radio network, was nominated for a James Beard Prize for a show called, “I Know What You Ate Last Summer.”