Hey Monday, you came too quickly. How was your weekend, my friends? Too short? Yeah, mine too… But hey at least summer is still here, there will still be more time for the beach, brunches under the sun, lazy afternoon naps, and strawberry and cream pie! Summer deserves a good summer pie, and this one takes the cake, IMO, juicy strawberries, creamy cheesy filling, down to the sweet crunchy flaky crust. YUM!
But did you know strawberry is actually not a berry at all? It belongs in the ROSE family! And the fleshy red fruit is actually not the fruit? A strawberry is a multiple fruit with many individual fruits embedded in a fleshy receptacle. The parts that are commonly considered seeds are actually the fruits! There’s a little Monday food fact for ya. 🙂
This pie is very easy to make, I promise. The only part that would take a tiny itty bit of elbow grease is the crust. Before, I used to be totally intimidated by pie crust, but once I started making it, I found that it is actually quite simple! As with everything in baking, all you need is a little bit of patience, practice and some good directions. But if you don’t want to make the crust from scratch, you can always use a premade frozen pie crust.
Several years ago, Ryan and I bought a peaches and cream pie from Polly’s Pie, and it was the best cream pie ever! The cream filling was creamy and cheesy, OMG… mmm… After that, we came back every single year just to look for that exact same pie, but they never brought it back. So I was on a mission to recreate it. Instead of peach, I ended up with this strawberry and cream pie. And it is just as delicious!
I always make my pie crust in a food processor but if you don’t have a food processor, you can use the stand mixer with a paddle attachment or by hand with a pastry blender (to cut the cold butter into the flour) and a fork (to mix in water). Also, I use dry beans as pie weight. It’s actually cheaper and more effective than actual pie weights. When you purchase pie weights in a jar at the store, there is only enough to cover the bottom of the pie. But with dry beans, I use enough to fill the whole pie, which helps the crust keep its shape during baking much more effectively. (Thanks, Alton Brown!)
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 tablespoon + 1 teaspoon granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon heaping table salt
- 5 oz cold unsalted butter (1 stick + 2 tablespoons)
- 3 tablespoon cold water
- Dry beans to use as pie weights
- 8 oz cream cheese
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1/3 cup granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
- 2 lbs strawberry
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- Prepare the strawberries ahead of time. Wash, hull and slice the strawberries. You can quarter or halve the strawberries if you prefer. Toss strawberries with 1/4 cup of sugar in a large bowl, cover and refrigerate until needed.
- To prepare the pie crust, put flour, sugar and salt in the food processor fitted with the dough blade and pulse a few times to mix. Cube the butter and add to the flour mixture. Make sure butter is cold. Pulse several times until butter is about pea size and mixture resembles coarse crumbs.
- Add cold water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse until the dough starts to pull together. Be mindful not to overmix, you still want chunks of butter in the dough to create a flaky crust.
- Turn the dough out on a lightly floured board and shape into a disk. Wrap in plastic and rest in the refrigerator for an hour.
- Roll the dough out to about 1/8” or about a 13” circle. Carefully place the dough in a 9” deep dish pie pan. Trim the edge if necessary but leaving enough to fold under and flute the edge. Cover with plastic and place in the freezer while you preheat the oven.
- Preheat the oven to 400°F.
- Take pie pan out of the freezer, poke holes at the bottom with a fork. Place a piece of foil over the dough, wrap the foil to cover the edge of the pie as well. Place dry bean over the foil, press the beans into the side of the pie pan to keep the side of the crust in place during blind baking.
- Bake for 20 minutes. Then carefully remove foil and dry beans. Bake for another 15 – 20 minutes uncovered to brown.
- Let crust cool completely before adding the filling, about 2 hours.
- For the filling, whip the heavy whipping cream to stiff peak. Transfer to another bowl and set aside.
- Cream the cream cheese with sugar and vanilla extract until smooth. Add the whipped cream back in, and fold the whipped cream into the cream cheese mixture using the lowest setting on your stand mixer. Or fold by hand using a spatula until thoroughly mixed.
- Spoon the cream mixture into the cool crust. Then spoon the strawberries on top of the cream using a slotted spoon.
- Refrigerate until ready to serve.
- If using premade frozen pie crust, bake according to instruction that comes with the dough.
- Reserve the strawberry juice for drizzling over pie when you are serving it if you'd like.