Of all of the food fuelled memories I have, making this pie always takes me to summer days on the Island and my Grandparents’ place. They lived on the same piece of property for 60 years, a sloping 5 acres that trickled into Fuller Lake, and for the last 10 years that they were alive, we made a habit of spending as many of the few holidays I could squeeze out hanging out with them and the kids by the lake, spending time together and cooking a few dinners a year there. It seemed that for a number of years we were always there in early August, and berries were always in abundance.
The first time my grandmother made this pie I was blown away by its simplicity and clean flavour, which comes from really fresh ripe fruit, left to speak for itself for the most part. I have since shared this recipe with any who have been over for a summer barbecue at my place, and had it for my birthday cake last year! You can use any fruit, just match the flavour of the gelatin powder to the fruit in hand, and cut larger fruits into bite sized pieces before assembly. Peaches will need to be blanched first to remove the skins, but fresh berries should just be washed gently to preserve their integrity.
1 prebaked tart or pie shell ( I like to use sweet dough, recipe follows)
2 lb fresh strawberries, raspberries, blackberries, or peaches (enough to fill pie shell)
1 package fruit flavoured gelatin powder (same flavour as the fruit being used)
1 cup boiling water
2 cups whipping cream
1/4 cup sugar
Prebake the tart shell until fully cooked and golden. Set aside until cooled
Wash fruit and de-stem if necessary. In the case of peaches, blanch to remove skins, and slice into bite size pieces. Strawberries are best hulled and halved or quartered if large, leave raspberries or blackberries whole. You can use a combination of berries if you like, there are no rules when it comes to the possibilities here.
Boil water and add 1 cup to the package of gelatin powder. (this is half the amount of water called for on the package, which is exactly what we want for this) Allow to cool to room temperature
Toss fruit in the cooled gelatin and fill pie shell.
Pour any remaining gelatin over top.
Place in the fridge to chill
Once cold and the filling has set, whip cream with sugar and spread over top of pie. return to fridge and allow to chill thoroughly before serving.
I guarantee the freshness and light flavour will soon become one of your favourite easy family summer recipes. It sure has for us, and always takes us back to summer days on the lake.