Rustic Black Sour Cherry Pie

I like making rustic pies because they suit my not-so-perfect pie crust rolling skills. I can roll out the dough and be happy with whatever shape the crust ends up to be as long as it fills the pie plate. No need to form a near perfect circle.

The key to making a nice flaky crust, is to keep the butter very cold. When working with the dough, if you start to notice the butter melting, place it the freezer for a few minutes.

Pie Crust Ingredients
1 1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour (or unbleached white flour)
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 stick cold unsalted butter, cut into 3/4-inch cubes
2-3 tablespoons vodka (or cold water or orange juice)

Filling ingredients
1 quart (4 cups) fresh sour cherries,  washed, stemmed and pitted (you can use frozen cherries, but steer away from the canned versions)
3/4 cups honey (or sugar)
2 tablespoons flour
1/8 teaspoon of salt

Note: I’m using a food processor You may also make this by hand, cutting the butter with two knives or a pastry blender.
-Combine the flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor and pulse briefly until combined.
-Add the butter cubes and pulse until the mixture resembles small peas.
-Add the vodka one tablespoon at a time. Process just until a ball of dough begins to form. Don’t over work the dough.
-Shape the dough into disk, wrap in plastic and refrigerate for at least 15 minutes.
-On a lightly floured work surface, roll out disk of dough. Place dough in a 9-inch pie plate, don’t worry about trimming the edges. Prick the bottom and sides of the crust with a fork and refrigerate while you make the pie filling.
– Heat the oven to 425 degrees.
– Drizzle the honey over the cherries. Add salt and gently toss. Let sit for 10 minutes.
-If your cherries are swimming in liquid, drain. You want about 1/4 cup of the juice.
-Sprinkle flour and mix gently.
-Pour the filling into the center of the chilled pastry shell. Gently fold the edges of the crust over the filling. It will not completely cover the filling.
-Place the pie on a rimmed baking sheet to catch any escaping liquid, and place it into the oven.
-Bake for 15 minutes; reduce heat to 350 degrees and bake for 30 to 40 minutes longer, or until the filling is bubbling and the crust is golden.