This pie has been the official state pie of Indiana since 2007. Growing up in the heart of Indiana farm country, I remember it was on the dessert table at every church dinner, holiday celebration, and potluck that I can remember! This pie's roots are in the Amish and Shaker communities, often referred to as a "desperation pie" because it could be made with just pantry ingredients and some cream in the dead of winter when there were no other pie options. This pie can also be found in Pennsylvania Dutch areas and Quebec, but it is most well known as a "Hoosier Sugar Cream Pie". Other aliases include "finger pie" (see the video for that explanation), sugar cream pie, cream pie, sugar pie, or Indiana cream pie. (One thing you won't hear it called is "light"! But those farmers who worked out in the cold all day needed all the calories they could get, and this filled the bill.) Of course, it would not be so wildly popular if it didn't taste amazing. Take just one bite, and you will "get it"!
One unbaked 9-inch pie shell (Basic Pie Dough)
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/4 cups white sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup half-and-half
1 cup heavy cream
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1 ounce (2 T.) butter, cut into small pieces
Preheat the oven to 400-degrees.
Combine the flour, sugar, and salt thoroughly in a bowl. Pour into the pie shell. Stir the vanilla into the half-and-half and heavy cream in a pint measuring cup. Pour the cream slowly into the pie shell with the dry ingredients. With the bottoms of your fingers, gently rub and stir the cream into the dry ingredients until there are no lumps of the sugar mixture, using care not to puncture the shell at all. (Don't rush this process, be certain that all of the ingredients are thoroughly mixed.) Dot the top with the butter.
Bake in the preheated oven for 40-50 minutes, until it bubbles up in the center, and is lightly browned all over. (If the pie browns too much before it bubbles up in the center, cover loosely with foil. If the pie is under-cooked, it will not set up properly.) Cool completely, then refrigerate for an hour or two before serving.