I wish Better Homes & Gardens would reprint their 1960s Dessert Cook Book. This old hardback is a gem, and I make family desserts from it all the time. If you want a copy of your own, make sure you’re getting one from the 1960s. It went through several printings, so you should be able to find a copy. But don’t order one from the 1970s, by then they’d dropped their best recipes to support the Jell-O craze and the flood of women heading out into the workforce.
My kitchen was such a mess that day. Obviously it wasn’t just pie that created mass destruction, but I found myself paralyzed by the mountain of dish washing ahead of me. Luckily, Dishboy Scott came to the rescue! Thanks Dishboy, you’re the best, even if you’re just in it for free pie and martinis.
Strawberry Cream Pie
Due to short, unorganized, old time style instructions, failure to read this recipe before starting could possibly result in frustrated yelling and self hair pulling as you scramble to catch up. I have clumps of missing hair to prove it.
1 9-inch baked pastry shell
½ cup slivered blanched almonds, toasted (Jesse doesn’t like nuts so I left them out, but I bet they’d be great in here.)
1 recipe cream filling (below, make first)
2 ½ cups fresh strawberries
½ cup water
¼ cup sugar
2 teaspoons cornstarch
Few drops red food coloring (This is not needed, tastes bad, and I never use it.)
Cover bottom of cooled pastry shell with nuts. Fill with chilled Cream Filling. Halve two cups of the strawberries. Pile atop filling.
Glaze: Crush remaining ½ cup berries; add water; cook 2 minutes; sieve. Mix sugar and cornstarch: gradually stir in berry juice. Cook, and stir until thick and clear. Tint to desired color with food coloring. Cool slightly; pour over halved strawberries. Keep refrigerated till serving time. Pass whipped cream, if desired.
(for Strawberry Cream Pie)
Really? I thought it was for Date Pinwheels 30 pages away. Sorry, the sarcasm seems to be oozing out of me today. I think I need a piece of pie.
½ cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons enriched flour
½ teaspoon salt
2 cups milk
1 slightly beaten egg
½ cup heavy cream, whipped
1 teaspoon vanilla
Mix first 4 ingredients. Gradually stir in milk. Stirring constantly, bring to a boil; reduce heat and stir until thick. Stir a little of the hot mixture into egg; return to remaining hot mixture. Bring just to boiling, stirring constantly. Cool, then chill. (It will be very gelatinous after chilling.) Beat well; fold in whipped cream and vanilla.
Recipe from p77 of the "Better Homes & Gardens Dessert Cook Book", published 1960. Pictures by Laura Flowers.