Hot Metal Bridge

Current Issue : Number Twenty-Five

Cranberry Pie



You dare not trust yourself to make the house pleasant with your wit and so you buy ice cream. Hello cranberry pie-lover. Your lights are light because your darks are dark, bog-like, ballooned. Where your rivers break into lakes, weeds silk the dark water. Do you wonder how it feels to back-float in a cranberry field, cerise fruit bubbling up your arms’ lazy windmill? What would cranberries sound like, their million submerged collisions? Like a tub of loose beads? A handful of lost change chattering in the dirt? The bite of tart fruit loses its teeth a la mode–but why speak of it? You’re too adult to chew open mouthed, yet this pie is more vivid under the light of a loose jaw, a little air.



Cherry Cranberry Pie

Pastry for a double-crust 9-inch pie

3 cups frozen pie cherries

2 cups frozen cranberries

1 cup sugar

1/3 cup flour

juice of half a small lemon

1 teaspoon almond extract

pinch salt

small pinch nutmeg

2 tablespoons unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

extra sugar for dusting

Make the pie crust and refrigerate for an hour.

Preheat the oven to 425 degrees. Roll out the bottom crust and drape it into a pie pan. Refrigerate while you prepare the filling.

In a large bowl, mix cranberries, cherries, sugar, lemon juice, salt, nutmeg, and almond extract . Toss gently to mix. Taste. Adjust lemon juice and sugar if needed. Sift the flour over the mixture and toss gently to mix again. Turn the filling into the chilled bottom crust and smooth it with your fingers. Dot the top of the pie filling with butter.

Roll out the top crust and drape it over the filling. Crimp the crust into an upstanding ridge and make generous steam vents. Brush the crust with milk or egg white wash to help it brown. Sprinkle sugar over everything.

Bake at 425 degrees for 20 to 25 minutes until the crust is golden brown. Rotate the pie front to back and reduce the heat to 375 degrees. Bake until bubbling, about 30 to 35 minutes.

Cool on a wire rack at least two hours before serving.


Kate Lebo’s poems appear in Best New Poets 2011, Poetry Northwest, Bateau, and The Pacific Poetry Project, among other anthologies and journals. She’s an editor for Filter, a literary journal made entirely by hand, and the recipient of a Nelson Bentley Fellowship, a 4Culture grant, and a Soapstone residency. Currently an MFA candidate at the University of Washington, Kate hosts a semi-regular semi-secret pie social called Pie Stand whenever schoolwork allows. For more about Kate’s zine, A Commonplace Book of Pie, and other tasty treats, visit