Saturday, May 10, 2014

Frozen Strawberry Pie--Just in Time for Mother's Day

I noticed that somehow I have not posted many strawberry recipes, although so often we eat them at home. Strawberries, as they are at their peak in May, are often used for Mother's Day desserts. When my younger son was in preschool just before Mother's Day kids baked strawberry shortcakes and served them with coffee at a Mother's Day party.

So today, just before Mother's Day, I will post a very easy strawberry pie recipe that any kid could make. I have had this recipe hand copied in my notebook for years and do not even remember where it comes from. But only recently I made it for the first time when I bought one too many strawberry boxes, as they were very ripe and irresistible.

A nice thing about this pie is that it can be made well ahead. It should be frozen for 4-6 hours to set up, but it can be frozen ahead and gently defrosted in a refrigerator just before serving. If served frozen, which is also possible, this pie would remind an ice cream cake.

And even if you miss the Mother's Day, a strawberry pie served with fresh strawberries on top and a cup of coffee would make a wonderful spring dessert at any time.

Frozen Strawberry Pie
(For a 9-inch baking form with high removable walls)
9 Graham crackers (2 and 1/4 by 4 and 3/4 inch) crumbled,
5 tbsp unsalted butter, melted,
1 lb strawberries, stems removed, plus another cup for decoration
1 can (14 oz) condensed sweetened milk,
juice from 2 limes or lemons,
1 and 1/2 cup heavy whipping cream

1. Preheat oven to 350F. To make a crust in a medium bowl, mix crumbled crackers with melted butter. Transfer crackers to the baking pan and using a small bowl push them so they stick to the bottom and the walls of the form.

2. Bake the crust until gold for 10-15 minutes and cool completely.
3. Cut strawberries in half and place in a blender. Add condensed milk and lemon juice and purée everything together until smooth.

4. In a large bowl beat the heavy whipping cream with an electric mixer until stiff. Add to the cream half of the puréed strawberries, fold in gently, and add the other half. Transfer the cream to the baked crust. Smooth the top and freeze for about 4 hours, until set.
5. Remove the pie from the freezer before serving and let it soften in a refrigerator for about an hour. Decorate with fresh strawberries cut in quarters and serve.

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