By Kevin Williams
My first encounter with Amish raisin pie was a celebratory occasion, an Amish wedding in Indiana. But the food, it turns out, has a much more somber tradition: funerals.
Atlas Obscura has a brief, but interesting, post this week about Amish raisin pie. The post gives the reasons why raisins became such a funeral staple among the Amish.
Interesting, I'm just not a huge raisin fan so when I first had the opportunity to taste raisin pie I was not overly eager. But the version that I've had is a custardy, creamy, thick mixture that encases the raisins, so you really don't get overpowered with a bunch of raisins. In other words, the pie really works.
To make your own raisin pie, perfect in a pinch, try our recipe below!
- 2 cups raisins
- 2 cups water
- ½ cup packed light brown sugar
- ½ cup granulated sugar
- 3 tbsp. cornstarch
- 11/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
- ¼ tsp. ground allspice
- Pinch of salt
- 1 tbsp. apple cider vinegar
- 3 tbsp. butter
- 1 9 inch pie crust, or two for a double-crust
- Preheat oven to 400 degrees.
- Put raisins and ⅔ cup of water in a saucepan and heat over medium heat for 5 minutes.
- Combine the sugars, cornstarch, spices and salt in a medium bowl, and stirring constantly, gradually add the remaining 11/3 cups water.
- Add this mixture to the raisins.
- Cook and stir until the mixture starts to bubble.
- Add the vinegar and butter and heat until the butter is melted.
- Remove from the stove and let cool until just warm.
- Roll out dough to a ⅛-inch thickness on a floured surface.
- Line a 9-inch pie pan with the dough.
- Trim to a ½-inch wide overhang.
- Pour the filling into the crust.
- OPTIONAL: Roll out the second dough, place on top of the pie, and trim to a 1-inch overhang. Fold the dough under and crimp the edge. Cut decorative slash marks into the top crust. You can also leave the pie uncovered as in the photo. The second crust is optional. Bake until golden brown, about 15 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool completely. Makes one pie to serve eight.