There’s nothing quite so synonymous with Thanksgiving as turkey and pie.

Apple, pumpkin, pecan… Fruit- and nut-filled desserts are piled high on dinner tables all over the country come turkey day. And even though the holidays may look a little different this year, a comforting homemade treat is an easy way to make this time feel extra special.

“Pie is perfect because it’s nostalgic,” says Maya-Camille Broussard, owner of Justice of the Pies, a quiche-, tart-, and—you guessed it—pie-focused bakery inspired by her father’s work as a criminal defense lawyer on the West Side of Chicago.

The old standbys are undeniably delicious, but why not spark tradition by adding a new dish to your rotation this year? Broussard’s favorite, a dark cherry crumble pie, is a good place to start. “It’s not the traditional Thanksgiving dessert that’s heavily spiced,” she says. “It’s sweet, fruit-filled, and very light—perfect after a heavy dinner.”

Don’t be thrown by the homemade crust, either. “If you aren’t comfortable making your own, starting out with a store-bought option is perfectly fine,” she says. “Once you’re comfortable and confident with your filling, you can venture out and test crust recipes and techniques. Pie is usually a two-step process, and it’s okay to focus on mastering one before moving on to the other.”

 

Dark-Cherry Crumble Pie Recipe

Black Cherry Crumble Pie

Photography by Caroline Pestel

Black Cherry Crumble Pie

Photography by Caroline Pestel

Ingredients:

12 cups pitted fresh or thawed frozen dark sweet cherries (about 4 pounds)
2 cups granulated sugar
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons Amaretto
1 teaspoon almond extract
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
1 tablespoon fine yellow cornmeal
Master Pie Dough pie shell
1/2 cup uncooked regular rolled oats
1/3 cup unbleached all-purpose flour (about 1 1/2 ounces)
1/4 cup light brown sugar
1/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

 

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350°F. Stir together cherries, granulated sugar, and lemon juice in a large saucepan. Cook over medium-high, stirring often until cherries soften and release liquid, about 15 minutes. Pour mixture into a colander set over a bowl; let drain for 20 minutes.

Transfer drained cherries to a large bowl; reserve strained juice for another use. Stir in Amaretto, almond extract, and salt. Sprinkle cornmeal in an even layer over the bottom of the frozen pie shell; pour cherry mixture evenly into the prepared pie shell. Bake in preheated oven until the crust is light golden brown, about 35 minutes.

While pie bakes, stir together oats, flour, and brown sugar in a bowl. Add butter; using your hands, incorporate butter until mixture resembles small peas.

Remove pie from the oven; sprinkle with oat mixture. Return to the oven; bake at 350°F until topping and crust are golden brown, about 20 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool completely, at least 4 hours or up to overnight. Serve and enjoy!

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