When asked what my favorite thing is to make, my answer is always pie. I love the rustic, simplicity of pies, and how they bring about a warm coziness and feelings of nostalgia. Making the dough by hand and forming the crust brings a sense of accomplishment. Perfect in its imperfections, and always welcome.
A lot are intimidated by making pie crust from scratch, and duly so. But once you understand the basic do's and don'ts of dough, you can confidently maneuver the world of homemade pie crust.
So here are a few key tips to pie crusting:
1. COLD BUTTER. Cut into cubes, and put it back into the refrigerator. Make the dough, and refrigerate. Assemble dough into pie plate, REFRIGERATE again! Keeping the butter cold is the most important step to ensure the flaky layers that are the essence of a good pie crust.
2. Don't over-work the dough. Really, everything comes down to keeping the butter cold, and keeping them in chunks for the layers. Over-working the dough will warm the butter up too much, and mix it into the dough, when you really want the chunks of butter to stay in chunks.
3. Don't stress. Baking should be fun, and you shouldn't worry about your crust looking perfect, but focus more on making it taste good! Every pie is different and any mistakes just give it character ;)
There's really not much more to it! I have a lot of step-by-step photos in this post for pie crust.
So about this pie. This blueberry pie is the only recipe for blueberry pie you'll ever need to try. It's packed with blueberries and not overly sweet. Just enough sweetness to offset the tart berries, and lemon juice to brighten the flavors.
When making fruit pies, you want to make sure your filling isn't going to be runny. I am still tortured with memories of my first apple pie. The filling was like apple soup! It was horrible. I can happily say I've come a long way since that fateful day.
Now I am always sure to take the extra steps necessary to ensure a thick, delicious, no-drip filling. Puddles in pies are no fun.
To thicken the filling, we not only use cornstarch, but cook the berries on the stovetop. Cooking them gets some of the juices out and thickens them into a jelly-like syrup. Then in the oven and when it cools (you MUST let it cool), the filling thickens and sets even more.
This pie is so simple and easy to make, and so delicious! Don't be afraid to try making pie from scratch. Once you do, I promise you won't ever look back. Happy baking!
- 2 1/2 cups flour
- 1 T. sugar
- 1/2 tea. salt
- 1/4-1/2 cup ice water
- 1 cup butter, cold and cubed
- 5-6 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
- 2 T. lemon juice
- 3 T. corn starch
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1/2 tea. salt