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The Duck Doctor and Strawberry Pie

DSCN4829 - Version 4You know the saying “life happens.” Well, I had a good dose of it a couple of days ago when my neighbor, Erin, knocked on the kitchen door with a swaddled bundle in her arms. “Can you help me?” she said. When she stepped into the kitchen I saw a black bill poking out of the swaddling. It was one of her Cayuga ducks, which she found laying down by her pond, apparently attacked by a snapping turtle. Anyway, all thoughts of prepping the ingredients for the strawberry pie recipe I’m sharing today flew out the window. I had a more important mission: to doctor that duck. Between the 2 of us, the wound got cleaned and bandaged and Erin took him home. The latest update is that he is up and about. Good news!

And yes, I did eventually get the pie made, it and it is a winner. This is strawberry season so I hope you make the pie and enjoy it as much as we do.

Fresh strawberry pie

I love Pam Anderson’s recipe. I got acquainted with Pam during her classes at Jungle Jim’s, and she is known for creative, workable recipes for family and friends. This strawberry pie is not only beautiful; it is yummy, as well. Check Pam’s site at threemanycooks.com for seasonal recipes that live up to their name. I adapted her recipe slightly.

You will have a few leftover strawberries.


3 pounds/3 quarts fresh strawberries, rinsed and hulled

1 cup sugar

1 tablespoon powdered pectin (like Sure-Jell brand)

3 tablespoons cornstarch, dissolved in 3 tablespoons of cold water

Squeeze of fresh lemon juice (a couple teaspoons)

1 teaspoon vanilla

1 pre-baked pie shell
Whipped cream for garnish


Slice 1 heaping quart of the strawberries for the filling and halve 2 heaping cups of your best looking ones for the pie top.

Halve another 2 cups of strawberries, place in a food processor, and puree until smooth.

Measure out 1-1/2 cups of the puree and transfer to a medium saucepan along with sugar and pectin.

Bring to a simmer over medium heat whisking frequently. Continue to simmer so that mixture foams, about 1 minute longer. Remove from heat; skim foam from surface.

Return saucepan to medium heat, slowing whisking in cornstarch mixture. Continue to whisk until mixture is stiff. Stir in lemon juice and vanilla.

Transfer 1/4 cup of the mixture to a small bowl. Whisk in up to 2 tablespoons of water to make a glaze for the top.

Transfer remaining mixture to a medium bowl, placing a sheet of plastic wrap directly on the surface. When mixture has cooled to room temperature, stir in sliced strawberries and turn into baked pie shell. Arrange halved strawberries over top; brush with glaze and refrigerate until ready to serve with dollops of whipped cream if desired. (Can be made several hours ahead.) Serves 6.

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