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TBB - Sour Cherry Pie (Pi Day)

Rose's Alpha Bakers

TBB - Sour Cherry Pie (Pi Day)

Patricia Reitz

Sour Cherry Pie (Pi Day) - ButterYum

Sour Cherry Pie (Pi Day) - ButterYum

Welcome to week 16 of the Alpha Bakers bake-a-long, an online project where a group of food bloggers bake our way through The Baking Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum.  Most of the recipes made during this project will not be shared, but I will post my commentary followed by a full photo tutorial.

This week's selection - Sour Cherry Pie (Pi Day).  A ruby red cherry filling cloaked in a lattice patterned cream cheese enriched pastry.   

Special ingredients and/or equipment needed - sour cherries, 9-inch Perfect Pie Plate, scalloped pastry cutter.  

Optional ingredients and/or equipment suggested - Rose's caramel potdigital scalepastry cloth, metal pie shield, expandable cake ring

How does it taste - Excellent.  Probably the best cherry pie I've ever eaten.   

How does it look - Beautiful, despite the fact that I inadvertently didn't set my timer and my pie baked a few minutes longer than intended.  

Level of difficulty - Easy. 

Were the directions clear - For the most part. 

What would I do differently next time - Make sure my timer is working properly so my crust doesn't over bake around the edges.  Aside from that, it was perfect.  

Special thanks - special thanks goes out to Alpha Baker Joan who surprised me with 2 bags of sour cherries.  THANK YOU JOAN!  

Next up - Luxury Oatmeal Cookies, March 23, 2015.  

Okay, here's my photo tutorial. 

The filling is super easy to make.  I used frozen sour cherries.  Just dumped them into a pot with sugar and cornstarch.  Boil for 1 full minute.  That's all.

Transfer the cherry filling to a container and allow it to cool completely.  

Then stir in almond extract.  Rose also suggested adding 2 tablespoons of Michelle's Miracle Cherry Concentrate.  I didn't have any, but I did have Boyajian Natural Cherry Flavor so I used a little of that.  It's super concentrated so I only used 1 teaspoon. 

For the crust we need to cut butter into 1/4-inch cubes and freeze them for at least 30 minutes.

We need to freeze the flour, baking powder, and salt too.  Place them in a zipper bag keep them dry. 

The cream cheese should be cubed and chilled (not frozen).

In the bowl of a food processor, combine the flour mixture and chilled cream cheese.  Process until it looks like this.


Then add the frozen butter and pulse until the butter cubes are smaller than the size of a pea.  

Add heavy cream and a little apple cider vinegar.  

Pulse again until the mixture begins to clump.


Place the crust mixture back into the zipper bag and compress the outside of the bag until the crumbly mixture sticks together.  Then divide the dough into two portions.  Wrap in plastic and chill for at least 45 minutes before rolling.

On a floured counter or pastry cloth, roll one portion of dough evenly and cut it into a 12-inch diameter disk.

Save the scraps to add to the other portion of dough.

Time to place the dough disk into the pie plate.  Be sure to brush away any excess flour.  

Place the crust into the pie plate.  Cover with plastic wrap and chill for 3 hours. 


Fill the crust with the cherry filling.  

DSC_7907 (2).JPG

Roll the second portion of dough into an 11x12-inch rectangle and cut lattice strips using a scalloped pastry cutter.  The strips should be about 3/4-inch wide.  We'll need 14 of them in all. 

Place 7 lattice strips, evenly spaced, facing the same direction, on top of the filling. Fold back every other strip half way to begin the lattice weaving process. There are step-by-step photos on page 203 of the book. 

Lattice weave done.  Tuck the loose ends under the bottom crust and press to seal. Quick tip - if any lattice strips break, hide the broken ends under strips that cross over on top.  You'd never know from the looks of it that I had 3 pastry strips that were either either too short or broken.  

I have a small cherry pastry cutter so I cut a cherry out of the scrap dough.  

Brush the dough with a little heavy cream.

I finish all my pies with a sprinkling of sugar.  In this case I used turbinado sugar.  Cover the pie with plastic wrap and chill for 45 minutes before baking.

Preheat oven with a baking stone on the bottom rack and bake pie as directed. 

Cool and serve.   This pie is phenomenally delicious.  I hope you'll give it a try.

links to more alpha baker photo tutorials