In the South, homemade pies/cakes/food in general are good for lots of things (funerals, graduations, sickness, etc). This story leads to another highly valued use for strawberry pie. Recently on our travels in Western NC, Wildrose Deacon and I had eyed a rolling, high grass meadow in the middle of a power line access for some good birddog training. Well after a few loud retrieves (DT launcher in play) in this gorgeous meadow, the landowner that bordered the power line reminded us that we had not gotten permission to use the area. Immediately we apologized and got our gear to leave. Fortunately, the landowner happened to see his last retrieve as he walked up. Deacon had made a beautiful find up and over the hill in deep thick grass where marking and nose finding ability were paramount. The conversation switched to hunt tests, dogs, labs, ground hogs, turkeys, etc. Miraculously, as the conversation ended, the landowner further reassured me that we could use the land as long as we got permission in advance.
Upon returning home, I shared the story with my wife, Molly (cue eyes rolling, telling me not having permission = trespassing in her most lawyerly tone). She had just finished making my Mom’s strawberry pie recipe, and had baked not one, but 2 pies. Sensing an opportunity, I traded a couple of husbandly foot rubs for the other pie to go to the landowner. Immediately, I went to the landowner’s home to offer further apologies and, of course, one fresh strawberry pie. Overcome with good ole Southern kindness, he reassured me that he was glad for Deacon and me to use the new training grounds and wanted to know how the DT launcher worked. He went on to further tell me that his wife had thought I had shot my dog repeatedly! They had heard the noise, then seen the dog, then the dog had disappeared amongst the high grasses. I quickly went about reassuring her that I would never shoot my dog and again explained my high-powered dummy launcher. Well we all had a great big ole laugh and a sigh of relief (Deacon was in the truck, proof he was alive and well).
This proves once again that a strawberry pie is a cure for anything!!
Recipe for Ginny Mom’s Strawberry Pie:
1 prebaked 9-inch pastry shell
1 pkg. (8 oz.) cream cheese, softened
1/2 c. powdered sugar
1 box fresh strawberries
1/4 c. water
2/3 c. granulated sugar
4 tsp. cornstarch
Grated coconut for garnish (opt.)
- Use a store-bought pastry shell or prepare and bake your own according to your own recipe. Cool.
- Blend cream cheese and powdered sugar. Spread in bottom of pastry shell. (If too much cream cheese, cut in half. Depends on your preference).
- Rinse berries, hull and sort, reserving largest and best berries. Crush enough remaining berries to make 1 cup.
- In small saucepan, mix water, granulated sugar and cornstarch. Add crushed berries. Bring to a boil. Cook for 2 minutes or until thick and clear. Cool.
- Press whole berries, tips up, into cream cheese. Spoon cooled strawberry mixture evenly over berries.
- Chill for 3 to 4 hours. Sprinkle with coconut, if used.
- When ready to serve, top pie with whipped cream or serve cream alongside.