4 and 1/2 cups halved & quartered pitted fresh cherries
2/3 cup (135g) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (28g) cornstarch
1 Tablespoon (15ml) of lemon juice
1 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/4 teaspoon almond extract
1 Tablespoon (14g) of cold unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
Egg wash: 1 large egg beaten with 1 Tablespoon (15ml) of milk
Optional: coarse sugar for sprinkling on crust
The crust: Prepare either pie crust recipe through step 5.
Make the filling: In a large bowl, stir the cherries, sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, vanilla, and almond extract together until thoroughly combined. Cover filling and place in the refrigerator as you roll out the pie dough or for up to 24 hours.
Roll out the chilled pie dough: On a floured work surface, roll out one of the discs of chilled dough (keep the other one in the refrigerator). Turn the dough about a quarter turn after every few rolls until you have a circle 12 inches in diameter. Carefully place the dough into a 9×2 inch pie dish. Tuck it in with your fingers, making sure it is smooth. Use a slotted spoon to spoon and spread the cherries into the crust. Reserve the juice for the next step. Refrigerate pie, uncovered, as you reduce the juices in the next step.
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Pour the few Tablespoons of leftover juice into a small saucepan over low heat. Cook and stir for 3-4 minutes or until juice has slightly reduced and thickened. Cool for 5 minutes, then pour over cherries in filling. Do your best to gently toss together– doesn’t have to be perfect. The reduction will harden and thicken as a result of mixing with the cold cherries. This is normal and it will melt again in the oven. Dot the pieces of butter on top of the filling.
Preheat oven to 400°F (204°C).
Arrange the lattice: Remove the other disc of chilled pie dough from the refrigerator. Roll the dough into a circle that is 12 inches diameter. Using a pastry wheel, sharp knife, or pizza cutter, cut strips of dough– I cut four strips 2 inches wide and two strips 1 inch wide. Carefully thread the strips over and under one another, pulling back strips as necessary to weave. Press the edges of the strips into the bottom pie crust edges to seal. Use a small paring knife to trim off excess dough. Flute or crimp the edges with a fork.
Lightly brush the top of the pie crust with the egg wash. Sprinkle the top with coarse sugar, if using.
Place the pie onto a large baking sheet and bake for 20 minutes. Keeping the pie in the oven, turn the temperature down to 375°F (190°C) and bake for an additional 30-40 minutes or until the top crust is golden brown and the filling juices have been bubbling up around the edges or through the lattice/vents for at least 5 minutes. **After the first 20 minutes of bake time, I recommend placing a pie crust shield on the crust’s edges to prevent it from over-browning too quickly.**
Remove pie from the oven, place on a cooling rack, and cool for at least 3-4 hours before slicing and serving. Filling will be too juicy if the pie is warm when you slice it.
Cover leftovers tightly and store in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.