On July 4, I decided to bring a dessert to a rooftop Independence Day barbecue in Greenpoint, Brooklyn. I recently went strawberry picking, brought home what seemed like the entire strawberry patch and froze two gallon-sized ziplock bags of the sweet berries. I had also been eyeing this delicious recipe from NYSOM’s friends at Hammertown, a home furnishings and lifestyle store with two locations in the Hudson Valley. So, choosing the recipe was a no-brainer: strawberry pie.
You may have seen my first attempt on Instagram or Twitter. You also may have noticed that there wasn’t a whole lot of pie crust around the edge of my pie dish. I followed Hammertown’s Strawberry Pie recipe (nearly) to a T, but came up short on a couple important aspects. First, when a recipe is designed around a 9-inch pie pan, keep in mind that your pie pan may be bigger — which mine was, but I didn’t realize it until I was wrist-deep in pie crust and hulled berries. Second, don’t use frozen strawberries. Even though they were picked fresh and immediately preserved (and then thawed for the purpose of this baking challenge), they did not make for a fresh strawberry pie. The result of my first attempt was more of a layered pie cake with too much strawberry puree filling. Throw in 90-degree humidity and the pie just didn’t look that appetizing next to the other 4th of July BBQ fixings.
I knew I could do better and I was determined to prove myself right. So, I re-made the pie, doubling the pie crust recipe and using fresh (never frozen) strawberries. The result was a beautiful, fresh and perfectly sweet summer dessert. See?
After baking this pie twice, I can honestly say that this recipe is easy and delicious. The failure of my first attempt was purely user error. So, if you have a boatload of fresh strawberries and are looking to satisfy a serious sweet tooth, look no further than Hammertown’s instructions. Just don’t forget to save the frozen strawberries for your summer smoothies.
Our next challenge? The Beekman Boys’ mini strawberry thyme tarts.