Three different people – none of them me, of course – have spied a lizard in my bedroom. It is green with red stripes, and Evie is calling it “Spiky”. I’m pretty happy the little guy is in there, actually, because I’m pretty sure lizards eat spiders, and we have a lot of spiders at this time of year. I’d rather have a lizard under my bed than a wolf spider. On the other hand, I don’t know what it says about my housekeeping abilities at this point in time.
In other, tastier news, Michelle mentioned strawberry pie in a comment the other day and sent a link to a recipe very like the one she uses. I’ve never had or made a strawberry pie, but it sounded delicious. Since it was the summer solstice, and the full “strawberry” moon, and the berries were on sale anyway, I made two for dessert, and they were absolutely wonderful. Just the right thing for a hot summer evening.
The original recipe called for one quart of strawberries, but my 9″ pie pan is fairly deep, and one quart was not quite enough. I also had to pay my strawberry hullers – in berries, of course. The recipe did not call for slicing the berries, either, but mine were pretty big, so I halved or quartered them, depending on size. Michelle says she uses extra cream cheese, and it is a very good foil to the sweet berry sauce. I made two pies, so I used half of an 8 oz package in the bottom of each, but you can use more, if you like. Happy summer!
1 8- or 9 inch pie crust of your choice, baked and cooled
1 to 1 1/2 quarts fresh strawberries
1 c. water, divided
3/4 c. sugar
3 tbsp. cornstarch
4-6 oz cream cheese, softened
Wash, drain and hull the strawberries. Save some of the prettier ones for garnishing later, if you like. Cut smaller berries in half, and quarter the larger ones. In a medium saucepan, simmer one cup of the berries (measured loosely in a regular dry scoop) and 2/3 of a cup of the water for 3 minutes. Mix together the sugar and the cornstarch, then stir that and the remaining 1/3 cup of water into the sauce. Boil for one minute, stirring constantly, till the milky color turns a pretty berry-red. Let it cool.
Spread softened cream cheese over the bottom of the cooled pie shell. Arrange 2 1/2 cups of berries atop the cream cheese, then pour the cooled sauce over all. (Or, if you’re impatient like me, just pour the not-boiling-but-definitely-not-cool sauce over all.) Refrigerate for at least two hours. To serve, top with whipped cream and those garnish berries.