I love holidays. I don’t know what it is about them. The chance to spend time with family and friends. The knowledge that were we not celebrating, we would otherwise be sitting in an office. Having the time to make and then consume too much food. And, perhaps my favorite, a reason to spend time in your kitchen baking the most fantastic themed desserts. July 4th is no exception. And, July 4th simply begs..no, no absolutely demands that you celebrate with a massive pie and a shameful number of scoops of vanilla ice cream.
Look, pie takes a ton of work. It is a much longer, much more step-filled process then cake. But, I truly believe nothing highlights summer berries better then pie. Juicy, ripe blueberries and blackberries come together with cinnamon, cardamom and a touch of cloves to form the most traditional dessert worthy of our Independence. They don’t call it ‘as American as Apple pie’ for a reason. Or Blueberry/Blackberry…whatever.
I was incredibly lucky to have one of my very best and very talented friends come visit this weekend. We’ve known each other since we were in 6th grade and I feel so truly lucky to still consider us close. She helped me bake and took all of the stunning photos in this week’s post. There is nothing I love more then company in the kitchen, particularly one whom is as passionate about pie crust as I am. I hope you all had a very happy 4th filled with friends, family, pool days and of course pie.
*Recipe from The Four and Twenty Blackbirds pie book. Seriously, go buy it. No excuses, I made it as easy for you as possible.
All-Butter Crust for a 9-inch double-crust pie
1 small baking apple
2-3 cups blackberries
2-3 cups blueberries
2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup packed light brown sugar
3 tablespoons ground arrowroot
1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
pinch ground cloves
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
2 dashes Angostura bitters
egg wash (1 large egg whisked with 1 teaspoon water and a pinch of salt)
demerara sugar, for finishing
Have ready and refrigerated one pastry-lined 9-inch pie pan and pastry round or lattice to top.
Peel and then shred the apple on the large holes of a box grater. Combine with the blackberries, blueberries, lemon juice, granulated and brown sugars, arrowroot, cinnamon, cardamom, cloves, salt, and bitters in a large bowl and stir until well mixed. Pour the filling into the refrigerated pie shell, arrange the lattice or pastry round on top, and crime as desired.
Chill the pie in the refrigerator for 10-15 minutes to set the pastry. Meanwhile, position the oven racks in the bottom and center positions, place a rimmed baking sheet on the bottom rack, and preheat the oven to 425 degrees F.
Brush the pastry with the egg wash to coat; if your pie has a lattice top, be careful not to drag the filling onto the pastry (it will burn). Sprinkle with the desired amount of demerara sugar.
Place the pie on the rimmed baking sheet on the lower rack of the oven. Bake for 20-25 minutes, or until the pastry is set and beginning to brown. Lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees F, move the pie to the center oven rack, and continue to bake until the pastry is a deep golden brown and the juices are bubbling throughout, 30-35 minutes longer.
Allow to cool completely on a wire rack, 2-3 hours. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature. Preferably with a huge scoop of vanilla bean ice cream*.
*This is hands down the best store-bought ice cream I’ve ever had, and can be purchased at your local Whole Foods or Fresh Market.