I remember an old clip from The George Burns Show where Gracie is talking with a girl who is staying with them for the weekend and she is doing her homework. She says to Gracie “Pi are square” and Gracie replies “Oh silly, pie are round, cracker are square!” It makes me chuckle every time I think about it.
Pi Are Square though this weekend, while pie are round. I got to thinking about what I could do for Pi Day, March 14, or 3/14, and it seemed so simple that I don’t know why I hadn’t thought about it before. The Old Forge Distillery asked me if I was doing anything for Pi Day and I said yes, but I needed a few ingredients, as in 3-1/4ths ingredients.
I already had already made a vodka pie crust a few times, and I had made a boozy whipped cream, now I just needed to add a little something fun to pie filling, so I came up with what I call:
Pi Me Another Round
6-7 cups fresh or frozen cherries, pitted
1/4 cup white sugar
1/2 cup brown sugar
2 tablespoons orange juice
1 teaspoon orange zest
1 teaspoon vanilla
Pinch of salt
1/4 cup Old Forge Distillery Bourbon
3 tablespoons cornstarch
2 tablespoon heavy cream
1 tablespoon coarse, raw, or brown sugar
In a large saucepan, combine cherries, white sugar, brown sugar, orange juice, orange zest, vanilla, salt, and bourbon. Let sit for about 10 minutes, then add the cornstarch and cook over med-high heat for about 15 minutes or until we’ll thickened. Set aside and let them cool a bit while rolling out pie crusts.
Roll out one pie round to 10 inches. Set in pie plate, leaving 1 inch of overhang. Roll out second round. When cherries have thickened and cooled a bit, pour into pie and prepare top as preferred – whole crust with vents, lattice, braid, cutouts, etc.
Bake at 375 for 45-50 minutes or until crust is a light golden brown. Let cool completely and serve with Cinnamon Creme Whipped Cream.
Vodka Pie Crust
2 sticks butter, shredded or cubbed and chilled
2 1/2 cups Old Mill Plain Flour
1 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons brown sugar
1/4 cup chilled Old Forge Distillery Vodka
1/4 cup ice water
Freeze 2 sticks of butter and grate it while frozen into a large bowl. Return grated butter to the freezer. Sift flour, salt, and brown sugar into a large bowl. Place the bowl into the freezer. Chill the vodka in the freezer as well. Let the butter, flour, and vodka chill for a min of 30 minutes. Remove everything from the freezer and add some ice to the 1/4 cup water.
Add the butter to the flour mixture a little at a time and stir to coat the butter with flour until all is incorporated. Sprinkle the chilled vodka over the flour, as well as the ice water. Stir with a wooden spoon until the flour begins to form a dough. Then with your hands, continue mixing the dough until it holds together. If you can squeeze a ball of dough together in your hand without it crumbling apart, the dough is mixed well. If needed, you can add a tablespoon of water at a time until it comes together. You want to work quickly and do this in the bowl to keep it cold. I prefer a glass bowl for this to retain as much coolness as possible. Working the dough while it is cold is key. You do not want to warm the dough, which would warm and melt the butter. You want chunks and pieces of butter visible in the dough.
When it comes together, divide dough, shape into disks, and wrap in plastic wrap so it is air-tight. Chill in the refrigerator for a minimum of 1 hour to overnight. This will allow your dough to completely hydrate. Working with one disk at a time, flour your surface and rolling pin well. Work the dough a little in your hands to soften it just enough to flatten it a bit and begin rolling.
Cinnamon Cream Whipped Cream
2 3/4 cup of chilled heavy whipping cream
1/4 cup of Old Forge Distillery Cinnamon Cream
6 tablespoons confectioners sugar
Splash of vanilla
Place the whipping cream in the freezer for up to 30 minutes. You want it very cold, but not frozen. Also chill the cinnamon cream. When ready, add the whipping cream and cinnamon cream to a stand mixer or large bowl and use a hand mixer. Whip on high for 4-5 minutes, adding the confectioners sugar a tablespoon at a time. Also add the splash of vanilla and continue whipping until firm peaks form. Be careful not to over whip, as it will begin to turn into butter. You want to be able to scoop a spoonful out and turn the spoon over and it hold to the spoon. Then you know it is firm enough. Serve on you favorite dessert.