Sunday, July 12, 2009

Blueberry pie

One of my favorite things about summer is berry season. I can eat all sorts of berries. I was lucky enough to have a berry farm right down the street while I was in high school. I was even more lucky to be friends with the owner who graciously allowed me to pick berries whenever I desired for free. Being on my own came the sticker shock at the grocery store when even in season a pint of blueberries is $2 at best. I can easily have a pint of berries in about 2 minute. A dollar a minute is a bit much and that doesn't bring in to consideration that raspberries and blackberries are much more expensive.

Regardless of price though I made the decision long ago that fresh fruit is not something I will miss out on. Thus today, a perfect sunny summer day, I decided to make blueberry pie. Blueberry cake would also have worked; however, it never turns out as well when I make it as opposed to my mom.

I have several recipes for blueberry pie. Some use fresh berries, others use frozen. Some cook the berries before adding them to the pie crust, others don't. The actual recipe I used calls for fresh berries to be mixed with the rest of the ingredients and then frozen for 2 hours. I used frozen berries and used immediately. (Personally I feel fresh berries are too good to be cooked.)

Frozen Blueberry Pie
Adopted from Alton Brown

20 oz frozen blueberries (4 cups)
1/2 cup sugar
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
pinch of salt (1/8 teaspoon)
1 tablespoon orange juice
store bought pie crust
1 egg
Preheat oven to 325 degrees with rack at lowest setting. Put one piece of pie crust and put in pie pan. In medium bowl put frozen berries. Toss with sugar, flour and salt. Pour in orange juice and mix together. Add berry mixture to pie dish making sure that any additional dry ingredients gets spread evenly on top of blueberries.
Add other pie piece on top and crimp edges together with fingers. Lightly brush a beaten egg over pie top being careful not to have too much excess egg in any one spot. Cut 4-5 steam slots on top of pie. Put in oven for 1 hour. If needs to be a bit more brown leave in oven up to 15 more minutes. Cool.
The hard part is letting the pie cool. This allows for the inside of the pie to stiffen. If you cut into a warm pie the center will still be liquid and will run out. I found this recipe to be quick, easy and delicious. Homemade pie crust can be used but to me takes too much effort. Store bought Pillsbury works well with little effort. Just roll out a few times before use.

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