Unless you’ve been living under a rock you know that Monday was the collision of two wonderful events: pi day and the bachelor finale. If this wasn’t intentional on ABC’s part, it was the most glorious coincidence I’ve ever seen. We celebrated the evening with juicy bachelor commentary, a glass of rosé, and a heaping slice of pie.
This month’s pie was an adventurous leap. Rather than stick to a recipe, I went the experimental route. If we’re being honest, I mostly experimented because I thought of a great pun. Thus I bring you: The Balsamic Thyme Strawberry Pie, cause it’s always pie thyme!
While picking up the ingredients, I met a friendly man at the fruit stand who gave me an extra carton of strawberries for free. So like any true adult would I put the strawberries to good use, and played with my food.
Next month it looks like we’ll be baking up two pies in celebration of a few birthdays. For now, check out the recipe below.
Balsamic Thyme Strawberry Pie
1 double all-butter crust prepared
1/4 cup plus 3 tbsp granulated sugar, divided
2 lb fresh strawberries (or more) approx. 6 to 7 cups, quartered
1 small baking apple (I used Golden Delicious)
2 tbsp balsamic vinegar
2 dashes angostura bitters
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1 tbsp thyme (finely diced)
3 tbsp ground arrowroot
2 grinds fresh black pepper
1/2 tsp kosher salt
egg wash (1 large egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water and a pinch of salt)
demerara sugar, for finishing
Roll out your prepared pie crust, arrange in pie pan, and refrigerate while you prepare the filling.
Rinse and quarter the strawberries, the sprinkle 3 tbsp of the granulated sugar over the berries. Stir gently to combine and allow the fruit to macerate at room temperature for 30 minutes to 1 hour. Peel the apple and shred on the large holes of a box grater. Drain the strawberries of excess liquid and combine with the shredded apple. Sprinkle the balsamic vinegar and Angostura bitters onto the fruit.
In a separate bowl, mix together the remaining 1/4 cup granulated sugar, brown sugar, thyme, arrowroot, black pepper and salt. Gently fold this sugar mixture into your strawberry mixture.
Sprinkle 1 tsp each of flour and sugar onto the base of your pie shell to help absorb the juices. Pour the filling into the pie shell, arrange lattice or pun-filled pastry round on top, and crimp as desired. Chill the pie in the refrigerator for 10 to 15 minutes to set the pastry. Meanwhile, position the oven racks at the bottom and center positions, place a rimmed baking sheet on the bottom rack, and preheat the oven to 425 degrees.
Brush the pastry with the egg wash. If your pie has a lattice top, be careful not to drag the filling onto the pastry (it will burn). Sprinkle with the desired amount of demerara sugar. Place the pie on the rimmed baking sheet on the lowest rack of the oven. Bake for 20 to 25 minutes, or until the pastry is set and beginning to brown.
Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees, move the pie to the center oven rack, and continue to bake until the pastry is a deep golden brown and the juices are bubbling throughout, 35 to 40 minutes longer.
Allow to cool completely on a wire rack, 2 to 3 hours. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. The pie will keep refrigerated for 3 days or at room temperature for 2 days. Serves 8 to 10. Although every pie is a personal pie if you try hard and believe in yourself.