Sunday, May 24, 2009

Sweet Melissa Sundays: Sour Cherry Pie with Pistachio Crumble

When we started baking through The Sweet Melissa Baking Book several weeks ago, this recipe was the one that jumped out at me the most. I was hoping to pick it when it was my turn, but Michelle of Flourchild beat me to it!!! Needless to say, I couldn't wait to make it.

I had some concerns about the cherries - all I could find was frozen sweet cherries. Other people seemed to have the same experience, however, and commented that theirs had turned out great, so I forged ahead! 

I made quite a few changes to this recipe:

I didn't use Melissa's flaky crust recipe as suggested, or any of her crust recipes for that matter. I don't use shortening, so I just stuck with my tried and true crust recipe from Heaven's Banquet by Miriam Hospodar.

The recipe called for sour cherries, but as I couldn't find any - canned, jarred or otherwise - I used frozen sweet cherries. I also omitted the sugar altogether. I figured the cherries would be sweet enough, and without sugar my 2 1/2 year old - who has never had sugar - would be able to eat it.

I left the sugar out of the topping as well, but replaced it with maple syrup. I added it to taste, so I'm not sure how much I used, but my guess is ht it was about 1/4 cup, maybe a little less. Also, I substituted cardamom for cinnamon in the topping. I thought it would pair better with the pistachios, and I loooooove cardamom. 

I was slightly disappointed, because when my pie came out of the oven it was very liquidy - even after cooling completely - and this made the bottom of the crust soggy. The crust was very nicely browned, and the topping was quite dark in places, so I was afraid to leave it in any longer, though I think that would have solved the runny problem. Other than that I did love it. My crust was great, the flavor of the cherries was great, and the topping was insanely delicious. As I was eating it, all I could think of was all of the other things I could make as an excuse to eat this topping again. It was that good. 


I popped my pie back in the oven for another 40!!! minutes, and it came out perfect!

Thanks to Michelle for picking this great recipe! Look here for the rest of the SMS bakers' pies.


  1. I bet the maple syrup in the topping was amazing!

  2. Great looking pie. Your the second person that said I beat them to it! Im glad it was a hit with several people. I hope to make it again soon!

  3. I'm with you when it comes to cardamom! Thanks for the idea, I will change the crumble topping accordingly. Glad you enjoyed the pie.

  4. Maple syrup and cardamom, what a delicious combination. I thought of using almonds instead of pistachios and somehow incorporating cocoa powder into the recipe. Hat's off to you for keeping your 2 1/2 year old off of sugar.

  5. Your pie looks terrific! I bet it was awesome with maple syrup!

  6. Your pie looks awesome! It was so smart of you to use your own crust recipe; Melissa's was quite bland. And I love the use of maple in your crumble topping! Wonder if more cornstarch would've helped the liquidiness of the filling? Glad you enjoyed this; I did, too!! Sorry I've been away for the past week; I had a good friend in town and wasn't able to do much on the computer. I'm back now, though :)


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