Speaking of pie, I thought I’d make one for us. I felt guilty for not including a recipe in my post about the Denver County Fair yesterday. All that talk of pies and pie-eating contests had me drooling for pie. So I’ve made this one just for my readers. I’d like to call you fans, but that might be an overstatement at this early stage of my blogging career.
It’s blackberry season. So feel free to use fresh berries for this recipe, but it is also legal, and maybe cheaper, to use frozen. It works either way. Just watch the baking times in the directions.
Email me if you have pie consternation. If pie were easy, everyone would make it. So don’t feel bad if you are a little intimidated. Easy as pie? ☺ Easier said than done. Good luck!
Blackberry Pie with Hazelnut/Pecan Crust
Makes One 9” Pie
¼ cup whole hazelnuts
¼ up whole pecans
2 cups all-purpose flour, sifted
½ teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
½ cup (4 ounces) cold butter, cut into 16 pieces
1 tablespoon apple cider
4-5 tablespoons ice water
1 1/3 cups super fine sugar
¼ cup corn starch
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
½ teaspoon ground ginger
2 16-ounce bags of frozen blackberries (or fresh)
Zest of one lemon
For the Hazelnut/Pecan Crust
- Preheat oven to 350ºF
- In a mini-processor, chop the hazelnuts and pecans together until fairly fine.
- In a large bowl, combine all of the dry ingredients and stir until well blended. Drop the cold butter cubes into the flour mixture. Toss the butter into the flour until fully coated. Work the flour and butter together by rubbing them between your palms. You can pinch the butter between your fingers to help break up the cubes. The goal is to enrobe the butter with the flour, not to cream them together. Continue until the mixture is a fine crumb. A few pea-sized cubes of butter are okay.
- Drizzle the vinegar and a few tablespoons of iced water over the mixture. Bring the mixture together into a ball, but do not knead it. If it is still crumbly, add another tablespoon of water until the mixture holds together. Flatten the ball, wrap in cling wrap, and refrigerate until chilled.
- Lightly flour your work surface. Roll the dough to 1/8” thick. Transfer to your pie dish and trim off the excess. Reroll the excess and use a leaf-shaped cookie cutter to cut out shapes that will be used to decorate the top of the pie.
For the Blackberry Pie Filling
- In a large bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and ginger and mix well. Add the frozen berries and lemon zest and toss to coat the berries.
- Transfer the berries to the prepared piecrust.
- Top the berries with the decorative piecrust leaves. Use as little or as many as you want.
- Place the pie dish onto a baking tray and bake at 350º for 90 minutes. Cover the pie with foil to keep the crust from darkening too soon. If you use fresh berries, bake for 60 minutes. The juices of the pie should be bubbling before taking it out of the oven. This will ensure the cornstarch is cooked and will properly thicken the juices. Allow to cool completely before slicing. (Tapioca is a great substitute for cornstarch.)