Cherry sour cream pie

Time Active work time: 25 minutes Total preparation time: 1 hour, 15 minutes plus 1 hour chilling
Yields Serves 8
Cherry sour cream pie
(Los Angeles Times)



Combine the flour, salt and lemon zest in a bowl. Add the butter and blend in using a pastry blender or 2 knives, working the ingredients to a coarse meal. Add the egg yolks, kneading in the bowl until the dough holds together and becomes smooth. (The dough can also be made in a food processor.) Cut the pastry in half, wrap both halves in plastic; refrigerate 1 hour.



Combine the cherries, the juice and 1/4 cup of sugar in a saucepan. Heat over medium-high heat, stirring, then reduce the heat to medium-low. Cook, stirring frequently, until the cherries have softened and a syrup has formed, about 10 minutes. Do not let burn. Set aside.


Heat the oven to 400 degrees.


Roughly chop the almonds and place them in a large bowl. Add the sour cream, egg yolk, cinnamon and almond extract, then fold in the cherries.


Roll out one pastry half on a lightly floured surface to fit a 9-inch tart pan with a removable bottom. Spoon in the cherry mixture, then cover it with the sour cream and nut mixture.


Roll out the remaining pastry slightly larger than the tart pan, so it overlaps about an inch, and cover the pie. Trim the pastry edges and pinch to seal. Sprinkle the remaining teaspoon of sugar over the top. Cut 3 or 4 slits in the top of the pie.


Bake the pie until the top is golden, 45 minutes. Serve warm.

Jeremy Lee is the head chef at the Blue Print Cafe in London and a contributing editor to Saveur magazine. He loves summer fruit. In this recipe, a heap of cherries is shown the pan just long enough to become a sort of instant jam. This is then ladled over intensely buttery pastry, topped with sour cream and almonds, sealed, baked and called “smetannik” or Russian sour cream pie. Lee got the idea from Darra Goldstein’s book “Taste of Russia: A Cookbook of Russian Hospitality.” It is aromatic rather than sweet, a perfect summer dessert to serve with a chilled Brouilly.

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