It became a favorite of Amish cooks because the ingredients were always available and the pie kept well. That meant it could be made a day or two before the funeral supper and freed hands for other tasks. It is purposely very sweet to allow mourners to forget, if only for a moment, the pain of their grief. The sugar can be reduced by in half.
- 2 cups raisins
- 1 cup water
- Finely grated zest of 1 large orange
- 1 cup orange juice
- 3/4 cup + 1 tablespoon granulated sugar, divided use
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 3/4 teaspoon ground allspice
- 1/4 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 1/2 cup chopped walnuts
- 1 egg, beaten
Pastry for 2 crust pie
- Preheat oven to 425 degrees F.
- Combine raisins, water, orange zest and juice in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer for 5 minutes.
- Meanwhile, combine 3/4 cup sugar, cornstarch, allspice and nutmeg in a small bowl.
- Stir slowly into raisin mixture. Cook, stirring constantly, until thickened, about 2 minutes. Remove pan from heat. Stir in lemon juice and walnuts.
- Roll out half the pie dough on a lightly floured surface. Fit into an 8 or 9-inch pie pan. Pour filling into pie shell.
- Roll out remaining pastry and place over pie. Seal and flute edges. Cut several slashes into top of pie to release steam. Brush with beaten egg and sprinkle with reserved tablespoon of sugar. Bake until golden, about 20 to 25 minutes. Serve warm.
Yield: 8 servings.