A simple pie where the crust is parbaked, the filling is thick and creamy, and the strawberries are the star. —Erin McDowell
one 9-inch pie
For the crust:
1 1/4 cups
cold butter, cubed
ice water, or more as needed
For the filling:
vanilla bean, halved and scraped
quart strawberries, hulled
In This Recipe
Preheat the oven to 425º F.
Make the pie crust: In a large bowl or in a food processor, combine the flour and salt. Add the butter and toss to coat. Cut the butter into the flour with your hands, or pulse in the food processor until the butter resembles the size of peas.
Add the water and mix to combine. The dough should come together easily but not be wet or sticky. Wrap the dough and chill for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the dough until it's 1/8-inch thick. Transfer it to a pie plate, and trim the edges so there is only 1/2 inch of overhang all around. Chill the dough inside the pie plate for at least 30 minutes in the refrigerator.
Fold the excess dough under at the edges, pressing gently to “seal” the dough to the pie plate. Finish the edges as desired. Poke the base of the crust a few times with a fork. If the dough seems warm, chill it again.
Line the crust with parchment paper and pie weights, and bake until the crust is golden and crisp, 15 to 20 minutes. Remove the parchment and pie weights and continue baking until the crust is fully baked, 5 to 10 minutes more. Cool completely.
To make the finished pie, mix the milk, cream, vanilla bean, and 1/4 cup of sugar together in a medium sauce pot. Bring the mixture to a simmer over medium-low heat.
While the milk warms up, whisk together the remaining 1/4 cup sugar, cornstarch, and eggs in a medium heat-safe bowl.
When the milk comes to a simmer, gradually pour the hot liquid into the egg mixture, whisking constantly to combine. Return the mixture to the pot and cook until the mixture is thick and comes to the "first boil" (one large bubble rising from the center of the pot, not many small bubbles around the edges).
Whisk in the butter and pour the mixture into the prepared pie crust. Cover the surface of the pudding directly with plastic wrap and refrigerate until fully chilled, at least 3 hours.
To finish the pie, top the pie with the strawberries. Warm the honey over medium heat, and when it’s runny, brush it over the strawberries. Serve the pie chilled.
I always carry three kinds of hot sauce in my purse. I have a soft spot for making people their favorite dessert, especially if it's pie. My first cookbook, The Fearless Baker, is out on October 24, 2017.