Cherry Slab Pie

Meeting new people is hard. 

What do you talk about?

I usually start off with fashion related preliminaries: "I love your scarf." Or "sweet shoes." 
Then I don't know what to say. Sometimes we talk weather: "Gosh it's hot." 
Sometimes we figure out who our mutual friends are: "Wow we know the same people." 

And then I panic. What to say? What to say?

Depending on how poorly things are going, I inevitably ask: "Soooooo, what's your spirit animal?" 

This is may be the only thing I learned freshman year of college. 

For the clueless, your spirit or power animal is, according to Wikipedia representative of: "a person's connection to all life, their qualities of character and their power." It's tied up in Shamanism and totems and spirituality and all kinds of other stuff. The animal represents you and can be a symbol of your personal strength or guidance. 

Or something like that. 

People were into it. I've met cats, rabbits, lambs, mountain goats, wolves, butterflies, rabbits, birds of all kinds, dolphins, deer, pandas, monkeys... you get it. 

For a while I was a hummingbird: 
I think now I'm just a wren: 

But the thing is, only about 4% of the population REALLY likes talking about their spirit animal.

I think I'm going to start asking people about their spirit dessert. Because darling, I've found mine: 

I can envision this conversation at future parties: 
Me: (At a loss for what to say next) So. Umm. What's your spirit dessert?"
Other Person: (Begins backing away slowly) What?
Me: Oh, y'know! That dessert you have this really deep connection with, one that sort of describes your personality, that's a source of power and strength for you! Mine is Cherry Slab Pie! It's like a regular pie, except that it's flat and has like, DOUBLE THE CRUST, and there's this sweet/tart cherry filling and a drizzle of icing on top! And it's just, like, HEAVEN!
I'm telling you, I AM HEAVENLY! 

I'm going to make so many new friends. 

But really beauties, this pie. It is something else. Please make it. Enjoy it. Think of me. Because when I say it's my spirit dessert, I am so not kidding. 


Cherry Slab Pie
via who adapted it from Martha Stewart

1 recipe Best Pie Crust (recipe below) 

6 cups cherries, pitted (I used regular cherries, however, if using sour cherries, adjust sugar accordingly)
3/4 sugar*
1/4 cup cornstarch
Juice of half a lemon
Pinch or two of salt
2 tablespoons heavy cream or one egg, beaten with a tablespoon of water

1 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 to 2 tablespoons milk or water 
or 1 tablespoon water plus 1 tablespoon lemon juice (I did this to make the glaze more interesting)

Preheat oven to 375°. In a large bowl, combine cherries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and salt. Stir to combine; set aside.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out the larger piece of dough into an 18-by-12-inch rectangle. Do your best to work quickly, keeping the dough as cold as possible (and tossing it in the freezer for a couple minutes if it softens too quickly; it is summer afterall) and using enough flour that it doesn’t stick to the counter. 
Transfer to a 15-by-10-by-1-inch rimmed baking sheet, (pastry will hang over sides of pan).  Pour cherry mixture into lined baking sheet; set aside.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out remaining piece of dough into a 16-by-11-inch rectangle. Drape over filling. Bring bottom pastry up and over top pastry. Pinch edges to seal. Using a fork, prick top crust all over. Brush with heavy cream or egg wash.
Bake until crust is golden and filling is bubbling, 40 to 55 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack until just warm to the touch, about 45 minutes.
In a medium bowl, stir together confectioners’ sugar and milk, water or lemon juice (or combination thereof) until desired glaze consistency is achieved. Use a spoon to drizzle over top. Serve warm or room temperature. Or cold. It's really good cold. 

Best Pie Crust 
from BAKED by Matt Lewis and Renato Poliafito 

1 cup (2 sticks) butter
3 cups flour
1 Tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup water
In a food processor whirl together the flour, sugar and salt. Cut the VERY COLD BUTTER into small pieces and blend until the mixture forms into pea-sized chunks. Dribble in water and whirl until dough just comes together.
Take dough out of processor and knead until dough comes together. Divide into two, wrap in plastic wrap and place in freezer for one hour before using.