Ah, my husband. He has these small little food aversions that I just will never understand. First off, there’s his aversion to peanut butter. (Gasp! Yes… I know.) Another is eggplant. (Oh, how I long to make an eggplant parmesan!) And one that blows my mind is strawberries. Yeah. How is that possible? It’s sad, I tell you. Strawberries are one of my favorite fruits to play with in the kitchen and if I make something with it, I need to have friends and family lined up to call over to help me eat it or package them up to give as food gifts. Such was the case for this Icebox Strawberry Pie. I loved this pie and I’m anxious to make it again this summer for cookouts! Bursting with strawberries and topped with a creamy whipped topping, it’s a sweet taste of summer in a slice of pie.
You may be surprised to know that this pie uses both frozen and fresh strawberries. The frozen strawberries are cooked on the stovetop down to almost a jam consistency. It’s imperative that you start off with 2 pounds of frozen strawberries. otherwise the filling will not set up or slice well. After the berries are cooked down, gelatin is mixed in and allowed to set up briefly. Fresh sliced strawberries are folded in and then everything gets placed into a baked pie shell to completely set up in the fridge. Just before serving, top it off with the creamy whipped topping made with cream cheese. It’s a great way to use those fresh berries, especially when in season!
Icebox Strawberry Pie
from Funky Chickens do it Better /America’s Test Kitchen
2 pounds frozen strawberries *extremely important!
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
2 tablespoons water
1 tablespoon unflavored gelatin
1 cup sugar
pinch of table salt
1 pound fresh strawberries, washed, hulled and thinly sliced
1 9inch pie shell, baked and cooled
4 oz cream cheese, softened
3 tablespoons sugar
1 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup heavy whipping cream
COOK FROZEN BERRIES Cook frozen berries in large saucepan over medium-low heat until berries begin to release juice, about 3 minutes. Increase heat to medium-high and cook, stirring frequently, until thick and jamlike, about 25 minutes (mixture should measure 2 cups).
ADD GELATIN Combine lemon juice, water, and gelatin in small bowl. Let stand until gelatin is softened and mixture has thickened, about 5 minutes. Stir gelatin mixture, sugar, and salt into cooked berry mixture and return to simmer, about 2 minutes. Transfer to bowl and cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.
ADD FRESH BERRIES Fold fresh berries into filling. Spread evenly in pie shell and refrigerate until set, about 4 hours. (Filled pie can be refrigerated for 24 hours.)
MAKE TOPPING With electric mixer on medium speed, beat cream cheese, sugar, and vanilla until smooth, about 30 seconds. With mixer running, add cream and whip until stiff peaks form, about 2 minutes. Serve pie with whipped cream topping.