If you've been following a Month of Pies, you may have picked up on something: I'm not very fond of the sweetie pie. (I'm also probably not personally a sweetie pie, but that's irrelevant.) I just don't like super-sugary pie. I'm much fonder of savory -- mmmm, savory pie. Like, say broccoli pot pie, tofu-cauliflower pie, shepherd's pie or even leftover pie.
But it's Thanksgiving, and I know everyone wants dessert. And I like dessert pie -- I really do!
I'm also (surprise, surprise) tasked to bring pie to the family Thanksgiving dinner. I'll probably bring a few crowdpleasers like sweet potato and apple, but I always like to try something new each year. That's why this cranberry-walnut pie has saved my bacon. (Mmmmm, savory bacon.)
Savory nuts and tart cranberries keep the treacle factor in check; a reasonable amount of sugar turns the pucker into a zing; butter rounds out the flavors and gives a lovely mouthfeel. I not only will have no trouble practice-baking this pie a few times before the holiday, but I also think it's a really good complement to the dinner.
Lifesaving Thanksgiving Cranberry-Walnut Pie
4 cups fresh cranberries
1 cup walnuts, chopped
1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cup sugar (more if you like it a tad sweeter)
2 T cornstarch
Pinch of salt (you can throw a pinch of cinnamon, or another spice you like, in as well)
1 t. grated orange zest
3 T cold butter (unsalted -- always unsalted when baking), cut into bits
Toss all ingredients together and mound high into a prebaked pie crust. (It will be high but the berries bake down.) Bake at 350 for about 30-40 minutes, until everything's bubbly. It's good to put your pie pan on a baking sheet due to messiness and bubbleover for this one. Note that I've only tested this exact ratio once, so this is more of an inspiration than a real recipe.
Other Cranberry Pies to Try
- Cooking for Engineers made a pie out of leftover Thanksgiving cranberry sauce, just thickened with a little flour
- So very many apple-cranberry pies, including this apple-almond-cranberry pie from Simply Recipes
- Cooking Books has a Nantucket cranberry pie that's really more of a cake (but still amazing-looking)
- Cook Local made a cranberry cream pie
- Endless Summer puts crystallized ginger in this cranberry pie
Would you want a cranberry pie after a Thanksgiving dinner with cranberry sauce? Do you like your pie sweet-tart, or are you just fine with just sweet?
I'm blogging pie every day in November -- It's NaBloPieMo! Check out the Month of Pies archive.
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