Icebox Strawberry Pie from the episode: Two Perfect Pies Cook's country TV. In step 1, it is imperative that the cooked strawberry
mixture measures 2 cups; any more and the filling will be loose. If your
fresh berries aren't fully ripe, you may want to add extra sugar to
taste in step 2. Chill
the heavy cream in step 4 to help it whip more quickly.
1. COOK FROZEN BERRIES Cook frozen berries in large
saucepan over medium-low heat until berries begin to release juice,
about 3 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high and cook, stirring
frequently, until thick and jamlike, about 25 minutes (mixture should
measure 2 cups). Don't Make This Mistake In step 1,
be sure to accurately measure the reduced strawberry mixture: You'll
need exactly 2 cups. Scrape the strawberry mixture into a large liquid
measuring cup. If it measures more than 2 cups, return it to the pan to
cook down. It may seem fussy to stop to measure, but the pie will not
set or slice properly if you have more than 2 cups of the strawberry
2. ADD GELATIN Combine lemon juice, water, and gelatin in
small bowl. Let stand until gelatin is softened and mixture has
thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir gelatin mixture, sugar, and salt into
cooked berry mixture and return to simmer, about 2 minutes. Transfer to
bowl and cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
3. ADD FRESH BERRIES Fold fresh berries into filling.
Spread evenly in pie shell and refrigerate until set, about 4 hours.
(Filled pie can be refrigerated for 24 hours.)
4. MAKE TOPPING With electric mixer on medium speed, beat
cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla until smooth, about 30 seconds. With
mixer running, add cream and whip until stiff peaks form, about 2
minutes. Serve pie with whipped cream topping.
Test Kitchen Discoveries We used 2 pounds of frozen berries (which worked well for cooking and
cost less than fresh) and cooked them down in a dry saucepan until they
released their juices and the mixture was thick, concentrated, and
flavorful. Because strawberries are low in pectin, the natural thickener found in
citrus fruits and many other plants, we added some lemon juice, which
perked up the flavor and tightened the texture of the filling a little.
To thicken the filling further, we added a bit of unflavored gelatin,
which produced a clean-slicing, not-too-bouncy pie.