Every single year, I always so look forward to ‘cranberry season.’
Cranberry Season is that period of roughly the last 2 months of the year where you can find cranberries in most grocery stores, in abundance. I always make a big batch of cranberry sauce for our Thanksgiving dinner, but I also always try to find new ways to bake with cranberries for the holidays, just because I think it’s a perfect holiday/festive-y food.
I’ll be honest, I’m starting to have to get more and more thoughtful towards the new cranberry recipes that I try out just because by now, I’ve baked with them in a lot of different ways. (A simple glance at the blog’s Recipe Index can tell you that.)
But I’m pleased to say that today’s recipe was a complete and total first for me. I’d never made cranberry pie before, or even a custard pie at all.
This was probably the best (and not to mention the easiest) introduction I could’ve had to both.
This isn’t one of those custards you have to stand over the stove stirring and stirring. All there is to do is throw together a pie crust, pour the cranberries into the pie dish, then pour the custard on top. As the pie bakes, the cranberries burst open.
Custard is great with just about anything, but when it’s paired with cranberries, I’ll tell you: it is something really special. The orange flavored custard is a perfect balance to the tart bitterness of the cranberries. Although this was originally an experimental bake, it’s a dessert that I could easily see myself making as a new yearly tradition.
Day 7: Cranberry Custard Pie
Cranberry Custard Pie
- 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour, plus more for the dough
- 2 tablespoons white granulated sugar
- Pinch of sea or kosher salt
- 1/2 cup (8 tablespoons, 1 stick) unsalted butter, frozen
- About 1/4 cup cold water
- 2 cups white granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons all purpose flour
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher or sea salt
- 4 large eggs
- 1/2 cup heavy cream
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- Zest of 1 orange
- 3 1/2-4 cups of preferably fresh cranberries*, but if frozen they need to be completely thawed (from 12 oz. bag)
For crust: in a medium sized bowl, combine the flour, sugar and salt. If you have one, use a box grater to grate the butter directly into the dry ingredients. (If you don’t, then just dice the butter into cubes and use a fork to cut it into the dry ingredients). Add a few tablespoons of water at a time and stir with a fork until the dough starts to come together. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Shape into a round and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate until firm, at least 1 hour, but preferably overnight.
Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Grease a deep dish pie pish.
Remove the pie dough from the refrigerator and roll out into a large round, about 12 inches. Transfer to the pie dish, fold over the sides and use a fork to press a design into the edges.
For the filling: Whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, flour and salt in a medium bowl. In a large bowl, whisk the eggs until uniform in color and no egg white is visible. Whisk in the sugar mixture until smooth. Add the heavy cream, vanilla and orange zest and whisk to combine. Add the cranberries to the bottom of the pie crust and pour the custard over the top.
Bake until the custard is set with a slight wobble in the center, about 50 minutes. Let cool completely.
*I didn’t need to use the full 4 cups of cranberries, this really depends on the deepness of your pie dish.