48 ounces water-packed sour cherries
1 1/3 cups sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
2 cups reserved cherry juice
1 1/2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
3/4 teaspoon almond extract
3/4 teaspoon red food coloring, optional
3 tablespoons unsalted butter, softened
Flaky Pie Pastry
3 cups unsifted all-purpose flour
4 teaspoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon baking powder
3/4 cup firm, unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 cup chilled vegetable shortening, cut into small pieces
7 to 8 tablespoons ice water, or more as needed
For Flaky Pie Pastry
Place the dry ingredients in the bowl of a food processor fitted with a steel blade. Chill for 15 minutes. Process for 5 seconds to blend.
Add half of the butter and shortening. Pulse 4 to 5 times, then process for 4 to 5 seconds. Add the remaining butter and shortening and pulse again 4 to 5 times, then process for 4 to 5 seconds. The mixture should have the texture of coarse meal and still contain some larger pieces of fat.
Empty the mixture into a large bowl. Add the ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, drizzling it around the side of the bowl. Use a kitchen fork to push the mixture toward the center with each addition.
With floured hands, press the dough against the side of the bowl forming two balls. All of the crumbs should adhere to the balls and clean the bowl. If not, add some additional water, a few drops at a time. Flatten the balls into two, 4 to 5-inch disks.
Dust the disks with flour, then score with side of your hand. Cover with plastic wrap. Chill 1/2 hour or longer before using. Will keep refrigerated for up to 3 days. This recipe makes one double crust 10-inch pie.
To Make The Filling
Set a colander in a large bowl. Drain the cherries thoroughly. Reserve 2 cups of the juice. Line an All-Clad Baking Sheet with double thickness of paper towels, and spread the cherries on the towels to dry.
Combine the sugar and cornstarch in a 3 Quart All-Clad Sauce Pan. Gradually stir in the reserved cherry juice, stirring until smooth. Cook over med-low heat until the mixture comes to a boil and is thickened. Simmer for 1 minute, stirring occasionally. Do not overmix. Blend in the lemon juice, almond extract, red food coloring and butter; gently fold in the drained cherries. Set aside to cool.
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Generously butter a 10-inch All-Clad Pie Plate. On a floured board, roll 1/2 of the pastry into a 15-inch circle. Line the pie plate loosely with the pastry. Trim the edges, leaving a generous 1/2-inch overhang. Spoon the cherry filling into the pan and smooth the surface.
Make a lattice top with the remaining pastry as follows: Roll pastry into a 14-inch circle. Using a pastry wheel, divide the pastry into ten 1 1/4-inch strips. Evenly space the pastry, starting with the longest strips in the center. Place 2 strips on either side of the center strip graduating the length as needed. Turn the pan 90 degrees and repeat process, again starting with the longest strip in the middle. Trim, leaving a 1-inch overhang. Turn the edges under and flute or crimp with a fork. Brush with ice water, then sprinkle with sugar.
Tear two 3-inch strips of 18-inch heavy-duty aluminum foil and mold them around the pie pan to cover the edge of the pastry. If necessary, use tape to hold the strips together. This will prevent it from burning.
Bake the pie for 50-60 minutes or until the crust is golden brown and the juices start to bubble. (Place an 18-inch square of heavy-duty aluminum foil on the shelf below in case the juices run over.) Cool on a rack at least 3 hours before serving