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This “cream” means a pastry cream or custard and shows the French influence in this 1940s recipe. It’s equally good with raspberries, blackberries or blueberries for the top layer. Because the custard filling will make the crust soggy, plan to eat this pie within an hour of making it. If that just won’t work, however, have everything except the glaze prepared and assemble and glaze at the last minute. It’s worth making everybody wait for this dessert.


1 cup unsifted all purpose flour
1 egg yolk
1 Tbs. granulated sugar
1/2 cup soft butter
1/2 tsp. grated lemon rind
1 to 2 Tbs ice water


1 1/4 cup milk
1 Tbs. cornstarch
1/3 cup granulated sugar
1/8 tsp. salt
2 Tbs. milk
2 egg yolks, well beaten
1/2 tsp. vanilla
2 1/2 cups hulled strawberries


1/2 cup Red Currant jelly
1 Tbs. brandy or orange juice

FOR THE SWEET PASTRY: Place the flour in a bowl. Make a well in the centre and put the egg yolk, sugar, butter and lemon rind into it. Using one hand, work these ingredients together in the centre, then gradually incorporate the flour. Add only as much water, if any, as is necessary to form a ball and absorb all the crumbs. Wrap and chill 1 hour. There is enough pastry for 1 large pie shell.

Because this pastry is made with sugar, it is somewhat more difficult to roll out than regular pastry. For best results, roll out the chilled pastry on a pastry cloth lightly dusted with flour and use a pastry sleeve over the rolling pin. Another guaranteed method is to roll it out between 2 long sheets of wax paper. To fit the rolled pastry into the pie plate, peel off the top layer of wax or parchment paper, then flip the paper, pastry side down, over the pie plate and peel off the remaining paper.

Fit the rolled pastry into a 9 or 10 inch pie plate. A shallow French tart tin, flan pan or quiche pan is ideal. Bake according instructions in each recipe.

Prepare Sweet Pastry and line 9 inch pie plate; bake blind. See Note*

TO MAKE THE FILLING, scald the 1 1/4 cups of milk in the top of a double boiler over direct medium heat. Combine the cornstarch, sugar and salt, and blend in the 2 Tbs. milk; stir into the scalded milk. Cook over boiling water until thickened and the taste of cornstarch is lost, about 8 minutes. Pour about a quarter of this custard into the egg yolks, beating constantly, then pour it all back into the hot mixture, continuing to beat. Cook over simmering water until thickened, about 4 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove from the heat, stir in the vanilla and chill.

Spread the custard over the bottom of the BAKED pie shell. Place the berries, tips up, in the custard. Melt the jelly with the brandy over medium heat and brush or spoon gently over berries. Best served within an hour. Yields 6 generous servings.

NOTE: * Baking pie shell blind. Line the pie plate with pastry. Be sure not to stretch the pastry, but fit it neatly and comfortably into the plate, then trim around the edges with a sharp knife and flute. Now neatly line it with aluminum foil. Fill evenly with 4 cups dried beans, split peas, lentils or rice. These beans or other things can be used over and over again for this purpose. Simply cool them after each use and store.

Bake the pie shell for 15 minutes at 425 F. Remove the foil and beans, cover the edges of the pastry with long strips of foil to prevent burning, and return it to the oven. Bake 3 to 5 minutes more to cook the base of the pie shell to an even golden colour. Cool.

Great Canadian Recipes Summer Berries E. Baird
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