Sunday, 26 October 2014

My Blueberry Pie (With Thanks to Crisco)

"Can she bake a cherry pie, Billy Boy, Billy Boy? "
 If you're old like me you can remember this song.

I've been using the same recipe for pastry as long as I can remember.  It calls for Crisco shortening and I have tried other lards at times but never had the success that I have with Crisco.  I think this recipe was found on the Crisco tub originally, come to think of it.  I used to joke that I could do a commercial for them, that's how faithful to this product over many decades I have been. I have also tried variations for pastry, recipes that call for sugar, or milk, or combinations of butter and lard, but always feel this one works out best for me.  I think pastry is a very personal thing for each baker and you learn yourself what gives you the best results.

Once this mixture is all in the bowl together, I do try to handle the dough as little as possible; that's about the only secret I have to tell you.  There has to be enough liquid to hold the dough together without having to work or knead it and that can be a little tricky.  I use a large egg always and don't skimp on the water which should be very cold, by the way.

I always use a knife to cut this big ball of dough into two balls, lightly wrap each and pop in the freezer while I prepare the berries.

Yesterday it was a blueberry pie so here is what I mixed for that:

4 cups of blueberries, 1/2 to 2/3 cup sugar(depending on how sweet the berries), 2 tbsp. flour, 1/4 tsp. salt; I combined the sugar, flour and salt and mixed it into the berries.

Again I try not to handle the dough too much and get it rolled and onto the plate as quick as I can.  This is a double crust pie so the berries are topped by another layer of dough just like this one.  I mixed half an egg and brushed it over the whole of the pie top.
It was  baked in a 450 degree oven for 15 minutes, the temperature lowered to 325 degrees and baked  for another 20 minutes or so.

I don't think I extended the dough to the edge of the plate like I should have; nothing is ever perfect with me!  Hubby had a big piece last night and pronounced it good, so I guess the proof is in the eating.