Lattice Top Cherry Pie

When my daughter, Sheri, was 10 years old, she came home from school one day and I decided to teach her how to bake a Lattice Top Cherry Pie.
We had such fun cutting the strips of dough and weaving them in and out across the top of the pie. It looked beautiful after baking and turned out picture perfect. We were so proud of it that we decided to display it in the center of the dining room table as a centerpiece while cooling and to surprise the other family members as they arrived home.
About 20 minutes later, my 13-year-old son, Steve, made his normal bee-line for the kitchen after returning home from baseball practice. His eyes literally popped out of their sockets, dancing with delight, as he bent down “pie” level to peer closely at the mouthwatering site. Just then, a violent, unstoppable sneeze erupted like a volcanic blast from his nostrils, misting the entire surface of the pie with an added ingredient! The three of us were dumbfounded and looked at each other in total shock, disbelief and silence. Sheri and I were devastated by the turn of events! How could we enjoy eating the misted pie or could we even eat it at all? Should we tell Dad what happened when he arrived home from work? These questions “mystified” us!!
After dinner, the three of us salivated as we watched Steve devour the pie ALL BY HIMSELF, with not only dancing eyes but with dancing taste buds as well.

2 (16 oz.) cans pitted tart red cherries
1 1/2 cups sugar
1/3 cup cornstarch
Dash salt
1 tablespoon butter
1/4 teaspoon Rodelle Pure Almond Extract
1 box refrigerated pie crusts, softened as directed on box
Milk for brushing on surface, optional
Sugar for sprinkling on surface, optional

Drain cherries; reserve 1 cup liquid. In a medium saucepan, combine 3/4 cup sugar, cornstarch and salt; stir in reserved liquid. Cook and stir over medium heat until thick and bubbly. Cook and stir 1 minute more. Remove from heat. Stir in remaining sugar, cherries, butter and almond extract. Let stand while preparing pastry.
Unroll pie crusts. Line a 9-inch pie plate with one crust; trim to 1/2-inch beyond edge of pie plate. Pour cherry filling into pastry-lined plate. Cut remaining pastry into 1/2-inch wide strips. Weave strips atop filling to make a lattice crust; flute edge. Brush top of pastry with some milk and sprinkle with sugar, if desired. To prevent overbrowning, cover edge of pie with foil. Bake at 375-degrees F. for 25 minutes. Remove foil; bake 25 to 30 minutes more or till crust is golden. Cool pie on rack before serving.