Summer Berry Pie
This past 4th of July weekend, blueberries were on sale at 6 pints for about $7. Which can only mean one thing: pie.
It’s one of the best things about summer. In the fall, you’ve got apple, pumpkin, sweet potato, etc. etc. But once summer hits, you get all these fresh peaches, blueberries, and strawberries that are FINALLY in season (and NOT breaking the bank at $5 a pint). We love a good fruit pie. (Trust us, there WILL be a peach pie recipe up in here before summer’s out).
We also had a bag of strawberries that I froze when the strawberries were on sale a week ago (when it comes to matters of shopping any kind of sale, our mother trained us well). And since Kaitlin was home for the weekend, the whole pie-making thing was pretty much an inevitability.
We adapted this recipe from the America’s Test Kitchen cookbook recipe for regular old blueberry pie, a classic if there ever was one. We got the book for Christmas from one of our aunts nine or ten years ago, and its splattered pages are a testament to how often we’ve used it. We often tweak things here and there, so there are some slight differences.
The crust is basically their standard recipe for double-crust pie dough. For the filling, we increased the amount of fruit (to accommodate our slightly steroidal 10-inch pie plate) and adjusted some of the other quantities. If you’re using a standard pie plate, you may need more like 6 cups of fruit. Another quick note: their recipe calls for potato starch, but we used tapioca starch, as that’s what we had on hand. It worked just as well, if not better than the potato stuff. The consistency of this pie filling was perfect.
Let’s start, shall we?
Summer Berry Pie Recipe Instructions
Start by making the crust. In a large mixing bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. If your kitchen is a bit warm, make sure to work quickly from now on! (BTW…this isn’t an endorsement of Betty Crocker. It just so happens we got this particular pastry cutter for a sweet deal at TJ Maxx).
Add in the chilled shortening and cut it in with a pastry cutter or two butter knives (we used the butter knife method for years, and we really can’t recommend pastry cutters enough. They’ve made our lives so much better. At least in the pie-baking department).
Once that’s looking crumbly, cut in the chilled butter.
You’ll want it to resemble coarse crumbs. It might start looking like pie dough already (especially if it’s a hot July morning). Work fast to keep the ingredients as cold as possible.
Sprinkle 5-6 tablespoons of ice water into the mixture and stir it in until it forms a dough. If you’re in a dry climate, you may need a couple extra tablespoons.
Divide the dough into two pieces and place each one on a piece of plastic wrap. Flatten them into disks, wrap them up, and put them in the fridge for at least an hour.
Once the dough is ready to roll, set your oven rack to the lowest position, throw a baking sheet on it, and heat the oven to a searing 500 degrees.
Now you can prepare your filling. We used a mix of strawberries and blueberries, but raspberries and blackberries are also encouraged!
Add the sugar, tapioca starch, and spices. Then squeeze in the lemon juice…
And zest it up.
Stir it all together…
And ready your pie pan!
Roll out the crust. Take one of the disks out of the fridge (Again, if the kitchen is warm, leave the other one in there until you’re ready to use it).
Sprinkle some flour onto a clean surface and roll the crust into a 12-inch circle. Spread it into the pan, pressing it into the sides. It was a struggle to roll out the dough in our warm kitchen, but we got her done.
Check your fruit at this point. If it’s looking pretty wet, stir in a couple more teaspoons of the tapioca starch.
Then take out your second piece of crust and roll it out slightly smaller (10-11 inches).
Fill the pie shell with the fruit and lay the top crust over it. Seal and crimp the edges and cut six to eight vent holes in the top.
Brush with egg white and sprinkle lightly with that last teaspoon of sugar.
The sense of urgency we felt for putting this pie into the oven as quickly as possible is the reason why these last couple steps aren’t pictured. All we got is this here picture of the aftermath.
Put the pie on the heated baking sheet and lower the oven temperature to 425 degrees. Bake about 25 minutes until the crust starts to get some color.
Then rotate the baking sheet, reduce the temperature to 375 degrees, and bake for another 30-35 minutes until the juices are bubbling.
Take it out of the oven and feast your eyes on the beauty of this pie.
We had a realllly juicy batch of fruit. Our oven thanked the baking sheet for catching all that juice.
Cool for an hour or two before serving. It was a difficult wait, but it’s best to give the filling a chance to set.
Vanilla ice cream is mandatory.
Yes. We DID eat this much in one sitting. Feel free to follow our example. It’s okay. This is a judgment-free zone.
Here’s the easy-print version: