Tuesday, July 8, 2008

TWD: Double Crusted Blueberry Pie

So, finally… it was my turn to make the Tuesday’s With Dorie selection. And boy, did it come with pressure, I mean… there are like a bazillion members now… and of course, there is no pleasing everyone with a group that big. So while I wavered between a cheesecake or chocolate bread pudding… since my week was over the holiday weekend, I opted for the most patriotic recipe I could find (well, with the exception of the apple pie, I guess)… Double Crusted Blueberry Pie.
Nevermind the fact that I have never actually had a blueberry pie. I like fresh blueberries and I like blueberry muffins… so, by logical deduction, I should like blueberry pie, right? Yes, I thought so, too. Plus, I picked the darn recipe! So, of course I’ll love blueberry pie and it will become my most favorite dessert ever.
I had made Dorie’s Pie Crust recipe before… just a couple of weeks ago, in fact and loved it. It instantly became my go-to pie crust recipe (sorry Emeril).

And again, using just a pastry cutter (who needs a stinking food processor, anyway?) the dough came together beautifully.
When it came time to prepare the filling, I was little wary. What I had was a bowl full of sugar crystals and blueberries. I poured into the crust and said a little prayer as I slid it into the oven that it would all meld together happily in the oven.

When I pulled it out of the oven, the blueberry filling was bubbling through the slits and the crust was a nice golden brown. I made this pie on Friday… thinking that it would be consumed on Saturday at a cookout at my parents. Except… the cookout got moved to Sunday… so, after sitting out all night on Friday, I moved the pie to a pie carrier till Sunday. I’ve always enclosed my cherry pie in a pie carrier, and found that the pie got better the longer it set. I assumed the same would be true for the blueberry pie, too.
Sunday, when I got to my parents and unveiled the pie, it was noticeably soggy in the center. This started to concern me. And when I finally cut into the pie I was greeted with a disgusting white goo that oozed from the center of the pie. It was like the bottom of the crust in the center, hadn’t even been cooked.

My mother says, “did you blind bake the crust, first?”

“No, I didn’t.”

“Oh, you should always blind bake every crust.” (She heard Martha Stewart say this once and now my mom deems herself a pie crust expert).

“Well, the recipe didn’t say to blind bake it and, I never blind bake the crust for a cherry pie.”

I soldiered on… thinking, well, maybe it will taste good… aside from the white, gooey center. And, I’m sure it tasted good for a blueberry pie, but here’s the thing…. I don’t think I like blueberry pie! (Ohhhhhhh… crap… as I was typing the recipe below I realized I forgot to cut a circle out of the top of the pie before I baked it!!!! That certainly didn’t help me any. Uggh. I hate it when I miss stuff like that!).

I think that the fact that the pie was made on Friday and not cut into until Sunday made all the difference in the weird, white center (and also, the no center hole in the top of the pie, dad gummit!). But, the actual flavor of the pie itself wasn’t my cup of tea. I ate my slice, but I think I prefer my blueberries fresh, rather than cooked.

Oh well, if you like blueberry pie, I think you’ll really enjoy this pie (as long as you consume it fairly soon after it has completely cooled). I may give it another go at some point. Be sure to check out everyone else’s pies at Tuesdays With Dorie.
Double Crusted Blueberry Pie
From: Baking: From My Home To Yours, written by Dorie Greenspan.


Good for Almost Everything Pie Dough for Double Crust , chilled (below)
2 ½ pints fresh blueberries
1 cup of sugar, or a little more, to taste, plus more for dusting
½ cup all purpose flour
Pinch of salt
Coarsely grated zest of ½ lemon
Squirt of fresh lemon juice, or a little more, to taste
¼ cup dry bread crumbs (you can use packaged unseasoned crumbs)

1 large egg, beaten with 1 tsp of water, for egg wash
Sugar, for dusting

Getting Ready: Butter a 9-inch pie plate (Dorie uses a standard Pyrex pie plate).

Working on a well-floured surface (or between wax paper or plastic wrap), roll out one piece of the dough to a thickness of about 1/8 – inch. Fit the dough onto the buttered pie plate and trim the edges to a ½ inch overhang. Roll the other piece of dough into a 1/8 inch thick circle and place it on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a silicone mat. Cover both the circle and the pie plate with plastic wrap and refrigerate while you pre-heat the oven and prepare the filling.

Getting Ready to Bake: Position a rack in the lower third of the oven and pre-heat the oven to 425 degrees F.

Put the berries in a large bowl and gently stir in the sugar, flour, salt, zest and juice; let sit for about 5 minutes. Taste the filling and add more sugar and/or lemon juice, if needed.

Remove the pie shell and top crust from the refrigerator. Sprinkle an even layer of the breadcrumbs over the bottom of the shell. Give the filling a last stir and turn it into the crust.

Using your fingertips, moisten the rim of the bottom crust with a little cold water. Center the top crust over the filling and gently press the top crust against the bottom. Either fold the overhang from the top crust under the bottom crust and crimp the edges attractively or press the top crust against the bottom crust and trim the overhang from both crusts even with the rim of the pie plate. If you’ve pressed and trimmed the crust, use the tines of a fork to press the two crusts together securely. Using a small, sharp knife, cut 4 slits in the top crust crust and cut a circle out of the center, then lift the plate onto the baking sheet. (If you have time, refrigerate the pie for about 30 minutes. The pie can also be wrapped airtight and frozen for up to 2 months. Glaze and sugar it before you put it in the over and add at least 15 minutes to the baking time).

Brush the top crust with the egg wash, then sprinkle the crust with a little sugar, just to give it sparkle.

Bake the pie for 30 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees F, and bake the pie for another 30 minutes or so (total baking time is about an hour) or until the crust is a beautiful golden brown and the filling is bubbling up through the slits. If the crust seems to be browning too quickly, make a loose foil tent for the pie.

Transfer the pie to a rack and let it cool and settle for at least 30 minutes before serving.

Good for Almost Everything Pie Dough

For a 9 inch Double Crust

3 cups all purpose flour
¼ cup sugar
1 ½ tsp salt
2 ½ sticks very cold unsalted butter, cut into tbsp size pieces
1/3 cup very cold vegetable shortening, cut into 4 pieces
About ½ cup ice water

Put the flour, sugar, and salt in a food processor fitted with a metal blade, pulse just to combine the ingredients. Drop in the butter and shortening and pulse only until the butter and shortening are cut into the flour. Don’t overdo the mixing- what you’re aiming for is to have some pieces the size of fat green peas and others the size of barley. Pulsing the machine on and off, gradually add about 6 tbsps of the water- add a little water and pulse once, add some more water, pulse again and keep going that way. Then use a few long pulses to get the water into the flour. If, after a dozen or so pulses, the dough doesn’t look evenly moistened or form soft curds, pulse in as much of the remaining water as necessary, or even a few drops more, to get a dough that will stick together when pinched. Big pieces of butter are fine. Scrape the dough out of the bowl and onto a work surface.

Divide the dough in half. Gather each half into a ball, flatten each ball into a disk and wrap each half in plastic. Refrigerate the dough for at least 1 hour before rolling (if your ingredients were very cold and you worked quickly, though, you might be able to roll the dough immediately: the dough should be as cold as if it had just come out of the fridge).

To Roll Out the Dough: Have a buttered 9 inch pie plate at hand.

You can roll the dough out onto a floured surface or between sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap or in a rolling slipcover. If you’re working on a counter, turn the dough over frequently and keep the counter floured. If you are rolling between paper, plastic or in a slipcover, make sure to turn the dough over often and to life the paper, plastic, or cover frequently so that it doesn’t roll into the dough and form creases.

If you’ve got time, slide the rolled out dough into the fridge for about 20 minutes to rest and firm up.