Sometimes, when I’m feeling particularly blog-writer-ish, I take stock of what I’ve posted and what I’m lacking. In the world of baking, it quickly becomes apparent that I love to make cookies. I have four pages worth of cookie posts, and they are always what I turn to when I’m not sure what to make.
I also like cupcakes. And brownies/bar cookies. But then I get to my pie category, and realize that it could use some love.
It’s not that I don’t like pies. They just have a habit of being fruit-oriented. I tend to prefer desserts that are chocolate and/or peanut butter oriented, or that can be eaten by just picking one up as you walk by and taking a couple bites.
Pies take effort. They take effort to make (pie crust – ugh). They take effort to serve (there is no good way to cut and lift a clean slice of pie). They take effort to eat (who wants to use a fork when you can use your hands?).
But I know there must be those of you out there who love that stuff. So this one’s for you.
And those of you that feel the same way as me? This pie happens to be really easy if you need to please those strange other people that want fruit in their desserts.
First, use a pastry blender (a seriously under-appreciated baking utensil) to cut together the shortening and flour in a large bowl until it forms pea-sized pieces. Add water by the tablespoon to the dough, mixing with a fork after each addition to ensure that all dough is moistened. For the ice water, I just filled a measuring cup with water and ice and scooped out as needed.Gather the dough into a ball and turn out onto a floured surface. Your best bet is to spread a piece of parchment paper on the counter and use that as your surface – it took me two tries to realize that.
Roll the dough into a circle large enough for a 9 inch pie pan. Lift the parchment paper and turn the dough into the pie pan. Press into bottom and sides and fold under any crust that hangs over. It’s fine if it’s below the lip of the pan; you’ll be topping it later on, and it actually doesn’t end up shrinking, which was my fear.In a medium bowl, whisk together the sugar and cornstarch.Add the blueberries and stir gently to coat.Pour the blueberry mixture into the pie crust.In a large bowl, mix the flour and brown sugar together with a fork.Add the butter and use the trusty pastry blender to cut together until coarse crumbs form.Sprinkle the crumbs over the blueberries until well covered.You will have way too much crumb mixture leftover. I love crumb mixture and I couldn’t bring myself to put it all on the pie. I had this much that I didn’t get to use:Very sad.
Anyways, bake the pie at 425°F for 10 minutes before lowering the temperature to 350°F for 20 minutes.
This part of the process caused a little anxiety. The recipe I was following had different directions, but the pie was clearly golden after the first 10 minutes, which made me worry it would burn. It didn’t, and probably could have been cooked a bit longer if you wanted the gooey blueberry center typical of such pies, but this method actually ended up kind of cool with the blueberries still retaining their shape. I’ll let you choose your method, but I definitely don’t have any leftovers my way.Serve with a scoop of ice cream, or, if you’re feeling particularly decadent, Tahitian vanilla bean gelato.
Blueberry Crumb Pie
- 1 1/3 cups flour
- 1/2 cup shortening
- 3 tablespoons ice water
- 1/2 cup sugar
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 pints blueberries
- 2 1/4 cups flour
- 1 1/2 cups light brown sugar, unpacked
- 1 cup unsalted butter, softened and cut into pieces
- Cut shortening into flour in a large bowl using a pastry blender until pea-sized pieces form.
- Add water, one tablespoon at a time, and mix with fork after each addition to moisten.
- Gather dough into a ball and turn out onto floured surface. Roll into large circle to fit in 9 inch pie plate. Place in pie plate and set aside.
- In a medium bowl, combine sugar and cornstarch.
- Add blueberries and toss gently to coat. Add blueberry mixture to crust in pie pan.
- In a large bowl, whisk together flour and brown sugar.
- Add butter and cut in using a pastry blender until coarse crumbs form.
- Sprinkle crumbs over blueberries, fully covering the filling.
- Bake at 425°F for 10 minutes then lower temperature to 350°F for 20 minutes. Remove from oven and cool before serving.