Ingredients

For the crust:
1 ½ cups crushed vanilla wafers (about 45 cookies)
1/3 cup chopped pecans
¼ melted butter

For the filling:
1 package 8 ounce cream cheese, softened
2/3 cup confectioner’s sugar
2 tablespoons Orange liqueur
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup whipping cream

For the topping:
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cornstarch
3 tablespoons water
2 ½ cups fresh or frozen raspberries divided

Directions

For the crust:
1. Combine wafer crumbs, pecans and butter.  Press onto the bottom and up the sides of a greased 9” pie plate.

For the filling:
1. In a large bowl beat cream cheese, confectioner’s sugar, liqueur and vanilla until light and fluffy. Fold in whipped cream. Spread into piecrust. Refrigerate until chilled.

For the topping:
1. In a small saucepan, combine sugar and cornstarch; stir in water and 1 ½ cups raspberries.  Bring to boil.  Cook, stirring constantly for 2 minutes, until thickened.  Transfer to a bowl. Refrigerate and chill.

Spread topping over filling. Garnish with remaining berries.

Recipe courtesy of Stephanie Smith, Changing Tides Gift Shop, ACE Hardware, 2011.

When it is time to start expanding your repertoire of summer desserts, you should include some like this pie that require no baking and use ingredients available in the summer such as fresh raspberries.

This is one of Stephanie Smith’s favorites because she likes to entertain all summer and this no bake dessert that uses readily available ingredients to make a cool and refreshing pie is a perfect solution. The season for locally grown raspberries in New England is July through September and Mid-June through October in the Mid-Atlantic region.

Red raspberries are readily adaptable throughout New England, but black and purple raspberries and blackberries lack the hardiness to be grown north of southern Maine and New Hampshire. When at the market, look for fruits that are plump, dry and firm. Raspberries can be found in a variety of colors including red, black, yellow, and purple.

Do not rinse raspberries until they are ready to be used. Pre-washing causes them to mold and rot more quickly. They are best fresh picked at room temperature but can be stored briefly in the refrigerator placed in an airtight container for 2 to 3 days. Raspberries can be frozen plain or in sugar or syrup. Once frozen, berries can be stored for up to one year.

The first thing you need to do is make the crust using vanilla wafers. The easiest way to prepare them is to put them in a food processor, but you could crush them in a plastic bag using a rolling pin. She likes to mix in some pecans for added flavor. A little butter serves as a binding agent. Put the crust together in a pie pan using a plastic baggie so the mixture does not stick to your hands.

The filling is made up of cream cheese, whipped cream and confectioner’s sugar, with some Orange liquor and vanilla extract for enhanced flavor. After putting the filling into the pie shell refrigerate.

The topping is made by heating sugar, cornstarch, raspberries and a little waterb in a small pan until everything is melted.

Serve the chilled pie with fresh raspberries or other berries on top.

Raspberry Cream Pie
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