Pie is a perfect summer treat for picnics and backyard barbeque, but when you’re serving a large group of people, making multiple regular sized pies can be a pain. That’s where slab pie comes in.

Baked on a half-sheet pan, slab pies can serve 20 or more people and require a little more effort than making one single pie. This particular version incorporates a traditional sour cherry filling with thin layer of creamy cheesecake. The buttery crust is flaky and well behaved. The filling is creamy enough that it doesn’t even need the addition of whipped cream or ice cream – though either would be a welcome addition.

 

Cherries & Cream Slab Pie

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Total Time: 2 hours

Yield: 1 15x10 pie

Cherries & Cream Slab Pie

Ingredients

    For the pie crust
  • 3 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons table salt
  • 3 sticks very cold unsalted butter, chopped into small pieces
  • 3/4 cup very cold water
  • For the filling:
  • 16 ounces cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 6 cups pitted sour cherries (defrosted and drained, if previously frozen)
  • 1 1/4 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch, sifted
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Zest of one lime
  • 1 tablespoon lime juice
  • 2 tablespoons heavy cream
  • 2 tablespoons sprinkling sugar

Directions

For the crust:

Combine flour, sugar and salt in large bowl. Add butter and – using pastry blender, two forks, or food processor – work butter into flour until mixture resembles small peas.

Gently stir in water, mixing until combined. Gather dough into your hands and knead two or three times until it comes together to form ball. Divide dough in half. Flatten each ball of dough into disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Chill dough in refrigerator for at least one hour or overnight.

Note: Dough can also be frozen for up to 2 months. Just place dough discs into freezer bag. To defrost, leave in refrigerator until thawed (12-24 hours) before using.

For the filling:

In medium bowl, combine cream cheese, sugar, egg and vanilla. Beat until well combined. Set aside.

In large mixing bowl, combine cherries, sugar, cornstarch, salt, lime zest and juice until well mixed. Set aside.

For assembling the pie:

Preheat oven to 375°F. Line bottom of 10x15x1-inch baking sheet or jellyroll pan with parchment paper.

On lightly floured surface, roll one dough disc into 18-by-13-inch rectangle. This will seem almost impossible at first, but the trick is to work quickly and keep dough as cold as possible.

Keep flouring counter (and rolling pin) and rotating dough as you work. If dough is getting too warm, gently roll dough onto rolling pin and unroll it onto large, flat, parchment-lined cookie sheet. Refrigerate for 10-15 minutes and try again.

Transfer dough to prepared baking sheet, pressing dough into edges and corners while allowing some dough to hang over sides of pan. Trim edges to about 3/4 inch wide.

Spread cream cheese mixture over bottom of crust. Pour cherry filling into pan and spread evenly.

Roll the second disc of dough into a 16-by-11-inch rectangle, using the same method described above. Drape over filling and fold the bottom crust’s overhang over the edges sealing them together.

Brush top crust lightly with heavy cream and sprinkle with sugar. Using a knife, cut small slits in the top crust, allowing for the pie to vent while baking.

Bake until crust is golden and filling is bubbling, 45-60 minutes, rotating pie half-way through baking period. Transfer to wire rack until just warm to touch, about 45 minutes.

Cool thoroughly before cutting and serving.

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Use softened butter for cookies and cakes.

Bringing butter to room temperature helps it incorporate better with other ingredients.

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