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Strawberries and Cream Pretzel Pie

The perfect combination of sweet and salty, creamy and crunchy, our Strawberries and Cream Pretzel Pie is the ultimate summer dessert. A smooth and silky layer of vanilla cream sits on top of a crisp pretzel crust, topped with homemade strawberry puree and fresh sliced berries. It's as beautiful as it is delicious.
Prep Time30 mins
Cook Time25 mins
Chilling Time2 hrs
Servings: 8
Author: Emily Clifton, Nerds with knives

Equipment

  • 9-inch deep dish pie plate

Ingredients

For the pretzel crust:

  • 4 1/2 cups small salted pretzels 180g
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 9 tablespoons unsalted butter melted

For the cream layer:

  • 12 ounces cream cheese or mascarpone room temperature
  • 3/4 cup confectioner’s sugar 90g
  • 1/2 cup heavy cream cold
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract or paste

For the strawberry layers:

  • 2 pounds strawberries about 6 to 7 cups, hulled and thickly sliced, divided
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • Pinch of kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice

Optional garnishes:

  • Mint sprigs
  • Red currants
  • Crumbled pretzels

Instructions

Make the pretzel crust:

  • Heat oven to 350ºF and set a rack in the middle. In a food processor, combine pretzels and sugar until you have fine crumbs. Add butter pulse a few times until crumbs are evenly moistened. Tip into a 9-inch deep dish pie plate and press in an even layer on the bottom and up the sides of the plate. Bake until golden brown and set, 15 to 20 minutes. Transfer to a rack to cool completely.

Make the cream layer:

  • In the stand mixer with a paddle attachment (or use a large bowl and a beater), beat the cream cheese on high for 1 minute to soften. Add the confectioners’ sugar, and continue beating on low speed until combined. Stop to scrape down the sides of the bowl, then beat on high until light and fluffy, about 2 minutes. (If using a stand mixer, switch to the whisk attachment). With the mixer on low, slowly add the cream, a tablespoon or two at a time, beating after each addition until the mixture is smooth. Scrape down the sides of the bowl, add the vanilla and increase speed to high and beat until billowy and whipped, about 2 more minutes. Transfer to the cooled crust and spread in an even layer. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until chilled, at least 2 hours, before topping.

Make the strawberry layers:

  • Add half the strawberries (about 3 cups) to a medium saucepan and crush with a potato masher until pulpy. Add the sugar, cornstarch, and salt and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Simmer for 2 to 3 minutes, stirring constantly, until the sugar is fully dissolved and the mixture thickens. Turn off heat and transfer mix to a large bowl. Allow to cool to room temperature, then stir in the lemon juice.
  • Spread the cooled purée on top of the cream layer and top with sliced fresh strawberries and any other garnishes. Serve immediately or chill in the refrigerator for up to 6 hours.
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