If you ever want to make a cherry crumb pie using Aldi's or Trader Joe's Dark Morello Cherries, here's an easy and fairly quick recipe. It's a crumb pie, which in this case means a regular pastry crust, a cherry filling and a crumb topping.
The dough is a basic all butter pie dough made with one of my favorite methods -- grating the butter into the flour mixture. This is so much easier than cutting it in with a pastry cutter. I use this orange, plastic grater/shredder which is much sharper than it looks.
The cherry filling is made with Aldi or Trader Joe's Dark Morello Cherries, which are relatively inexpensive and available all year long. I use this as both pie filling and as a topping for cheesecakes.
Here's the unbaked cherry crumb pie
And here's a cherry crumb pie that's ready to eat! Sorry about the bad lighting. I took these photos at night and don't have a lighting studio set up.
For the pie dish, I wouldn't recommend using anything larger than 9 inches. I used one of the disposable pie tins I ordered last week from Webstaurant. I bought a pack of 50 for $10.49 (plus shipping, so I bought a few other things to make it worthwhile). But I'm planning on giving away a lot of pies this season, so these should come in handy.
Cherry Crumb Pie
- 1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour (162 grams)
- 2 teaspoons sugar
- ½ teaspoon salt or just a pinch if using salted butter
- 1 stick cold unsalted butter (114 grams)
- ¼ cup very cold water
- 24 oz jar Trader Joe's Dark Morello Cherries in light syrup
- ⅓ cup sugar (65 grams)
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1 teaspoon butter
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- ¼ teaspoon almond extract
- ¼ cup all-purpose flour (35 grams)
- ½ cup oats
- ⅓ cup brown sugar (70 grams)
- 1 generous pinch salt
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened (42 grams)
- Stir the flour, sugar and salt together in a large bowl. Grate or shred the cold butter over the flour mixture, stopping occasionally to toss butter with flour mixture. When the whole stick of butter has been added, stir mixture with a fork or use your fingers to make the mixture evenly coarse.
- Add water 1 tablespoon at a time and stir with a heavy duty scraper until dough comes together. Shape into ball. Wrap in plastic and keep chilled until ready to use or use immediately.
- Filling: Separate syrup from cherries and measure out ¾ cup of the syrup.
- In a large saucepan, stir together sugar and cornstarch. Whisk in the cherry syrup, then set over medium heat. Whisk the mixture until it thickens and becomes translucent. Remove from heat and stir in butter, lemon juice and extract, then stir in the drained cherries.
- Pie Assembly: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. and put a heavy rimmed baking sheet in the oven. You'll be baking the pie on the hot, preheated cookie sheet (which is supposed to help keep the crust crisp).
- On a lightly floured surface, roll dough into a 12 inch circle. Transfer to a 9 inch round pie tin and crimp edges. Pour filling in the center of the pie.
- Topping: Combine the flour, oats, sugar, salt and cinnamon in the bowl you used for your pie crust. Add butter and stir until crumbly, then sprinkle over pie filling.
- Set the pie on the hot baking sheet and put it in the oven.
- Reduce the heat to 375 degrees F. and bake for 40 minutes. Check after 30 minutes to make sure your crumb topping isn't browning too quickly. If it is, lay a sheet of foil over it.
- Let the pie cool before serving.