Cherry Lattice Pie with Tahini and Cardamom

This is the first pie I ever baked. It took several tries to get it right. Creamy tahini and warming cardamom make up the delicate, flaky crust. Meanwhile, cherries are everything I ever wanted deep, dark red to taste like, spilling out of the pastry like nectar. This is summer in a pie.

Cherry Lattice Pie with Tahini Cardamom Crust
Makes one 9-inch Pie

2 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1 tbsp granulated sugar
1 tsp salt, plus more for egg wash
1/4 tsp ground cinnamon
1/4 tsp ground cardamom
1/4 cup ice cold water
3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks, or 12 tbsp) unsalted butter, chilled and cubed
1/4 cup tahini
2 lbs fresh cherries, pitted and sliced in half
1/2 cup granulated sugar, plus more for crust
1 1/2 tbsp cornstarch
2 tbsp lemon juice
1 egg
splash of milk

In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar, salt, cinnamon, and cardamom. Add cubed butter and tahini and use fingers to rub into the dry ingredients until a coarse, moist dough forms. Pour in 1/4 cup of water and continue to rub the dough with your fingers until it becomes moist, but slightly shaggy. The dough is ideal when it holds together when squeezed with the fingers. If the dough is still dry, feel free to add an additional tablespoon or two of water. Mould the dough into two separate rounds, then wrap in plastic and chill for up to an hour. Once the dough has chilled, preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Flour a clean counter or a large cutting board, and gently sprinkle flour over one round of dough. Use a rolling pin to roll out into a flat circle, about 10-11 inches in diameter. Gently fold dough in half over the rolling pin to transfer to a 9-inch pie dish so that there is slight overhang. To prepare the filling, stir together the cherries, sugar, corn starch, and lemon juice, then pour into the prepared crust. Next, take the other chilled round of dough and roll out into a flat circle, about 10-11 inches in diameter. Cut into eight 1 1/2-inch thick strips, then weave into a lattice design, with four in one direction, and four perpendicular to that (here is a helpful tool if you are new to this). Trim any overhang and gently pinch the dough together around the edges of the pie. Use a fork to imprint the dough around the edges, as well. Whisk the egg with a pinch of salt and a splash of milk, then use a pastry brush to gently brush the lattice and edges of crust, then sprinkle with granulated sugar. Bake for 60-70 minutes, until golden brown, using foil to create a tent over the pie about 30 minutes into the baking process (to prevent the fats in the dough from burning). Allow to cool completely in the pie dish on a cooling rack before serving.

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