This might be one of the most hybrid recipes I've ever created and it all started with me wanting to use up a big haul of late summer cherries. I had been thinking of making a slab pie so at first my plan was simple in that this was going to be a cherry slab pie. Then it got a little strange.
I thought it would be fun to give the crust a cookie texture by adding an egg. Thinking cookies, though, made me think of linzer cookies which would also contain almonds. OK, a cherry slab pie with a linzer crust. But, wait....
I started thinking about those Entenmann's cherry cheese danish cakes that were such an obsession when I was a kid. I wanted to stick with the linzer dough and not a danish pastry but why not add in the cheesecake filling, right? So that's how a simple cherry pie turned into this hybrid dessert. But, a really delicious hybrid. Don't be afraid of all the steps, by the way. Each is really simple and can actually be made ahead. I'm happy to be closing out the summer cherry season like this. And if you're wondering if you should serve this with a big scoop of vanilla ice cream, the answer is yes, yes you should. Enjoy!
Yield: 12 Servings
Cherry Cheesecake Linzer Slab Pie
prep time: 30 Mcook time: 1 H & 15 Mtotal time: 1 H & 45 M
Recipe for pie with an almond cookie crust and cherry cheesecake filling.
- For the Crust:
- 1 3/4 Cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 Cup finely ground almonds
- 1/4 Cup granulated Sugar
- 1 Teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 Sticks (12 tablespoons) unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1" pieces
- 1 Egg
- 3 Tablespoons ice water
- For the Cheesecake Filling:
- 16 oz. Cream cheese, softened
- 1/2 Cup granulated sugar
- 1 Egg
- 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
- For the Cherry Filling:
- 2 Cups pitted cherries
- 1/4 Cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tablespoon lemon juice
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Pinch of salt
- For the Topping:
- 1 Egg
- 1 Tablespoon water
- 1 Tablespoon coarse sugar
How to cook Cherry Cheesecake Linzer Slab Pie
- To make the crust, add the ground almonds, all-purpose flour, sugar, salt and butter to a food processor. Pulse a few times until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add in the egg and pulse just to combine. With the processor running, pour the ice water in through the feed tube and continue running until it turns into a dough ball. Don't over mix. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least one hour.
- To make the cherry filling, add the pitted cherries, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest and salt to a pot. Simmer on low heat for about 15 minutes or until the mixture has started to thicken. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
- To make the cheesecake filling, beat together the cream cheese, sugar, egg and flour.
- Pre-heat the oven to 350 degrees.
- Divide the crust dough into one third for the top and two thirds for the bottom. On a well floured surface, roll out the larger piece until it fits your sheet pan or tray. Note that I used a 9" pan for this. Drape it onto your rolling pin and transfer to the pan.
- Add the cheesecake filling. Top with the cooled cherry filling and slightly swirl it in with a butter knife.
- Roll out the remaining dough and, using a knife or pizza cutter, cut into strips. Place them in alternating diagonals across the top of your filling. If you have some leftover dough scraps, roll them out and use a leaf cookie cutter to add some designs to the top.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and water, then brush the top of the pie with it. Sprinkle on the sugar and bake for 50 to 60 minutes or until the crust is a light golden brown.
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