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An All-American 4th of July: Strawberry Cream Pie

An All-American 4th of July: Strawberry Cream Pie
An All-American 4th of July: Strawberry Cream Pie
Chef Larry Edwards/Casa de Cuisine

I think my favorite holiday may be the 4th of July. It gives me a chance to not only run around grilling to my hearts content without people thinking I am a mad man playing with fire and knives, but it gives me a chance to delve into what is considered to be true-blue (or true red/white and blue) American cooking. It's fun and that really is what cooking should be all about.

In this series called An All-American 4th of July, we will have some fun with some true American cooking. It will be tasty! It will be easy and it will give you a chance to celebrate the birth of the greatest nation on the face of this earth while filling your stomach with delicious morsels of Americana!

Of all the cream pies, I think strawberry is the best simply due to the fact that fresh strawberries keep their natural taste and sweetness during the process of making the pie. This version of Strawberry Cream Pie is pure. We will be using fresh strawberries, real whipped cream and real butter. As far as our crust in concerned, we'll use the classic French crust called Pate Brisee (which is a flaky buttery crust). This crust is very easy to make and if you click on the lovely blue link, you'll be taken to the recipe and the how-to pictures.

I do not recommend straining the strawberries after you puree them. You want the texture of the pulp to help set the filling and don't worry about the little seeds. For the best results, I would make this pie 24 hours before you want to serve it and then keep it chilled until you're ready to slice it.

Strawberry Cream Pie - a true touch of Americana!

Ingredients needed to make Strawberry Cream Pie (makes 1 9-inch pie):

  • 2 cups strawberry puree
  • 1/2 cup sugar
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 12 Tbs. butter
  • 2 cups heavy cream
  • 1/2 cup powdered sugar
  • pie crust (see link above for recipe and how-to pictures)

Steps:

  1. Into a medium non-aluminum saucepan over medium heat, whisk together the strawberry puree, sugar, egg yolks, eggs and salt until the sugar has dissolved (do not bring to a boil).
  2. Into the puree mixture, whisk in the butter and keep whisking until the butter has melted.
  3. Lower the heat to low and stir until the mixture has thickened and coats the back of a wooden spoon.
  4. Remove the mixture from the heat and cool to room temperature. Once at room temperature, chill the mixture at least 1 hour.
  5. Into a mixer with a wire whisk attachment, whip the heavy cream and powdered sugar until stiff peaks form.
  6. Fold the chilled strawberry mixture (actually a strawberry custard) into the whipped cream.
  7. Fill your pie crust with the strawberry cream, decorate and chill until ready to serve.

The new cookbook from Chef Larry Edwards is now available from Amazon.com and bookstores worldwide. One of the most anticipated cookbooks of the year, "Edwardian Cooking: Inspired by Downton Abbey's Elegant Meals."