Monday, September 10, 2012

Blackberry pie


It’s the end of the summer and the warm days have filled the air with the scent of ripened blackberries.  There are at least two varieties of blackberries that grow wild here, the small, tart, low, hard to find, creeping kind of berry native to the area and the bigger bushes of Himalayan berries.  Himalayan berries are not native and sometimes considered invasive weeds.  They are sweeter and have more seeds.  It does not matter much to me as I think both kinds make excellent pies, however, some purists will only use the small native berries. 

Make enough of your favorite pie crust for bottom and top of a 9” pie pan or use this recipe:

Great Pie Shell (makes enough for a double crust pie)

1 cup less 2 Tablespoons shortening
6 Tablespoons boiling water
2 teaspoons milk
2 1/2 cups of flour
1 teaspoon salt

Put shortening in mixing bowl.  Add boiling water and milk.  Whip with a fork until smooth and thick like whipped cream.  Stir in the flour and salt.  The dough should come clean from the sides of the bowl to form a nice ball.  Cut in half, roll 1/2 between two sheets of waxed paper.  Peel off the paper and line the pie pan.

[From:  Tired and True Recipes, page 209] 

Pie Filling

4 cups freshly picked & cleaned blackberries
1 cup Sugar
1 Tablespoon Lemon juice (optional—if you like a tart pie and are using Himalayan berries you may want to add some lemon juice)
¼ cup flour
2 Tablespoons butter

Mix the berries with sugar, salt, flour and lemon.  Pour into crust lined pan.  Dot the berry mixture with butter.  Roll out the top crust, fold over bottom crust edge, pinch or crimp around the edge.  Cut slits and prick top crust to make steam holes.  Bake in a preheated 425F oven for about 45 to 50 min. or until the pie is bubbling and the crust is golden brown.   Serve warm with ice cream or whipped cream. 

Besides eating the pie one of my fond childhood memories was picking the berries all the while smelling the heavenly ripe aroma in the afternoon sun.  The minor scratches from the berry stickers were forgotten almost as soon as they happened.

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