I remember being very confused as a child when , while we were all at some wedding, a relative mentioned they were going to the bar to get a cocktail. My only experience with the term “cocktail” at that point had been mixed fruit… and it seemed like a super weird, and fairly lumpy, drink idea.
Now that I’m all grown up, I’m just very confused why this would be put into a pie.
- 1-pound can of fruit cocktail
- 2 eggs, separated
- 8-3/4 ounce can of crushed pineapple
- 1/2 cup water
- 1 tablespoon lemon juice
- 2/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 1 baked (9-inch) pastry shell
- 3 drops almond flavoring
- Drain syrup from fruit cocktail into saucepan. Add egg yolks, pineapple, water and lemon juice. Combine 1/3 cup sugar, cornstach and salt. Mix dry ingredients into syrup mixture. Cook and stir until thickened. Stir in butter and fruit cocktail. Pour into baked pastry shell and cool.
- Beat egg whites until foamy; gradually add remaining sugar and almond flavoring and continue beating until soft peaks form. Dollop onto pie. Bake in 350-degree (moderate) oven 5 to 7 minutes until meringue is nicely browned.
What I find funniest about this recipe is that I’ve actually made a fruit cocktail meringue pie before, way back in 2009. And I had completely, utterly forgotten about it — until I Googled for fruit cocktail recipes on my own blog, because I vaguely remembered making something silly and mediocre with fruit cocktail before (turns out that was rainbow fruit sauce, incidentally).
I guess it isn’t terribly surprising that I can’t instantly recall the hundreds of retro recipes that I’ve made at this point, especially something from five years ago.
And despite the names, this is a very different pie. Here we’re making a cornstarch pudding filling, which is trickier than relying on gelatin for firmness. (The cornstarch did its job quite nicely, incidentally. When pudding works well, it has a terrific consistency.)
While making the meringue, I accidentally spilled more than three drops of almond flavoring in — it was more like two dribbles. (Whatever. Just splash some in.)
“Is this another fruit pie with meringue on top?”
“Yeah, I think that’s the third this month. I guess it was a thing.”
“Wow, this is really, really good.”
Verdict: Best fruit cocktail use.
From the tasting notes:
All the fruit cocktail elements worked really well in this, and were nice flavor and texture elements in the pudding filling. The almond extract is a great addition to the meringue topping (feel free to use more than three drops). It’s easy, bright, sweet, and has enough fruit that you can pretend it’s healthy!