The name of this pie is really outlandish, I know. But it has a lot of elements that make it more than just “cherry pie”, or “cherry cheese pie”. It just doesn’t quite cover it. It’s simple, creamy, whippy, walnut-y, with cherries and cream cheese. What was I supposed to call it? There’s no reason for the ‘Hippy’ part. It just rhymed with Whippy. And I suppose it doesn’t do your hips any favors either.
However, the actual name of this pie recipe is “Cherry Cream Pie”, which is normal and nice, and I should have just called it that. I found this recipe in a Taste of Home recipe book I have. I buy these simple cookbooks every once in a while because the recipes are from normal people, in normal towns, with normal ingredients that are simple to make, and are tried and true family recipes that someone’s grandma has been making for generations. I just like the simplicity of it.
Here’s the photo and recipe from the book. I didn’t follow the recipe exactly. I made a totally different crust, which I have listed below in the ingredients. But if you’d like to make it like Carol Wencka, from Greenfield, Wisconsin, then here is the how-to. (I’m sorry Carol, to change your recipe, but I just love a graham wafer crust. It’s my favorite.)
Anyway, my parents and sister were coming over to our place for an evening of Christmas fun, so I decided to make a dessert. Europeans always have a cake ready when company comes over, among other things. Namely, way to much food. But a good cake or dessert is just a staple. I love it when we have people over so I can make things like this, because my husband does not have much of a sweet tooth like I do, so I can never really justify making a whole cake or pie if it’s just us. So I don’t. Even I have limits. Ah, but my family is so reliable. A nice hot cup of coffee with something sweet….yes, it’s in our German DNA.
Crust: (Not from the original recipe – see above photo for walnut crust if desired)
1 ¼ cups finely crushed graham wafers
⅓ cup melted butter
½ cup finely chopped walnuts
1 8oz package of cream cheese at room temperature
1 cup confectioners sugar (powdered sugar)
¼ teaspoon almond extract
¾ cup heavy cream (whipped stiff) (The original recipe calls for only ½ cup)
1 21oz can of cherry pie filling
Here’s how mine turned out:
For my crust, I mixed my crushed graham wafers and sugar in a bowl. Then I added the walnuts and melted butter, and stirred it until it was all combined.
I poured it into a pie plate and gently pressed it down and up and around the edges. I put this in the fridge to chill for about an hour to make sure it was set.
In the meantime, I whipped up my heavy cream for a few minutes to get a really stiff whipping cream. I learned a long time ago to really have patience and make sure you get a hard whip when using whip cream to fold into other ingredients. If it’s not hard enough, you’ll end up with a soupy mess. Make sure when you take a spoonful of it out, that it stays on the spoon without dripping or even falling off. “Whip it, whip it good. Whip it, whip it real good.” (Have you ever seen the music video by Devo for that song? It’s odd, but so funny. I always laugh!)
Then I mixed up my cream cheese, confectioner’s sugar and almond extract in another bowl until it was nice and creamy.
I got my chilled graham crust from the fridge and spread the cream cheese mix over the bottom, in a nice even layer.
Then I added my can of cherry pie filling to the whip cream and very gently folded it together. (Again, the original recipe calls for ½ a cup of whip cream, but I went with ¾ of a cup. I don’t like desserts to be super sweet, and I know that pie filling very often is, from a can. So I wanted to add a little more cream to lighten up what might be a little on the sweet side – for our taste anyway. Go with the ½ cup if you like it sweet!)
It should look about like this.
Then gently spoon it over the cream cheese layer. I just used the back of a spoon to get a ‘whippy’ look to it. I also call this very skilled technique “I can’t make it look fancy if I tried, so I’ll go for the ‘rustic look’….yet again”.
Lastly, I had some leftover chopped walnuts, so I tried to copy Carol’s beautiful pie from the recipe book picture, and put them on top. I was pretty happy with how it looked. AKA – it’s always a relief when what you make looks like the photo it’s supposed to look like.
I put this in the fridge overnight. The next day when my family arrived I was very ready to cut into this baby and try it out. The results were in, and they were tasty. The cream cheese layer was creamy and sweet, and the whipped cherry layer was very light and had a nice tartness from the cherry pie filling. The nuts gave it a great crunch and texture.
Thank you Carol for a wonderful recipe that is sweet, but not overly sweet, light and airy, and the perfect holiday snack before heading out into the cold for a night of Christmas lights and festivities!
We headed out into a very clear, cold night to the Warm Beach Lights of Christmas display in Stanwood, WA, and like every year we go, we were delighted at the light displays and fun events that were set up.
Judah’s favorite part is always the “Polar Express 2” train that goes around the camp. His favorite movie during the holidays is always The Polar Express and so for the entire ride, we quoted lines from the movie, sang the songs and he made every train noise he could, shouting them all while hanging outside the train car.
These are the moments in my life I try to take mental snapshots of, and hold in the ‘best memories’ folder in my brain. I want to always remember the joy and excitement he has for these special times and how happy he is. It fills my heart so much. I will never stop thanking God for giving us Judah. He is the best present I’ve ever received.
– The Homesteaders Wife