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Thursday, December 6, 2018

Grandma Betty's Strawberry Pie (or Raspberry or Peach)

My mother was part of the American generation of cooks who fully relied on the convenience offered and marketed in the mid-nineteenth century and most of our family dinners were dishes concocted with a can of soup. Naturally this is how I learned to cook. Strawberry pies started to make frequent appearances in Mom's kitchen when I was in late high school and I came to make strawberry pies almost as often as she did. True to form, this pie relies on a convenience food: jello.

I'm ambivalent about jello so I've tried other recipes for strawberry pie, but history and funny memories attached to this pie keep me returning to the old recipe box. If I load it up with berries, it tastes good, too.


Grandma Betty's Strawberry Pie (or Raspberry or Peach) 

One 9-inch pre-baked pie shell, cooled
1 pkg strawberry jello (American--jello isn't reliably the same outside of this country)
2 T cornstarch
1 c sugar
2 c boiling water
2-3 c sliced strawberries (or more if you like)

Bring the water to a boil in a kettle, small saucepan, or microwave. Mix the dry ingredients together in another small saucepan and pour the water over. Whisk together, place on the burner, and return mixture to a boil. Stir carefully and remove from heat. Let sit on counter until cool enough to place in refrigerator. Let it chill for an hour or more until the mixture has gelled but hasn't set. Stir in berries. (I like more fruit than jello and a thicker pie so I definitely go with the higher amount.) Place fruit mixture in the pie shell and let rest in fridge for several more hours until the mixture has set. Serve with a generous dollop of whipped cream.

This is particularly good with tiny strawberries left whole although these can be hard to lay your hands on.

Raspberries or sliced peaches also make good pies (make sure you use matching flavors of jello, but good luck finding peach).

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