The JW Q&A
The JW Q&A
A Rabbi's World
The JW Q&A
A Rabbi's World
In the Beginning
There is nothing quite like a fresh summer pie – bringing one to a family barbecue, serving it up at the Shabbat table, or simply using up the berries from a day of family fun spent picking fruit.
Pies – specifically pie crusts - are one of those intimidating foods that many people never try out themselves, but once you get in the swing of things are really not too hard. The key is making sure everything you’re using is extra cold – the butter (or margarine) and shortening are frozen, the water is ice cold – some people even refrigerate the bowl they use. I would never say that you can’t use a store-bought crust, but the results will be so much better when you make it yourself.
Fill the pie with the topping below, or your own favorite combination of fruits, and impress the whole family (especially if you master the lattice crust!)
Quadruple Berry Pie
2 1/2 cups flour*
2 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons shortening, cubed and frozen
10 tablespoons butter, diced and frozen
6 to 8 tablespoons ice water
1 cup strawberries, quartered
1 cup raspberries
1 cup blackberries
1 cup blueberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1 egg white
Place the flour, sugar and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse to combine.
Sprinkle the shortening over the flour, and pulse until it resembles cornmeal.
Then scatter the butter on top and pulse until it resembles coarse crumbs.
Transfer the mixture to a bowl, and stir in 4 tablespoons of the ice water.
If the dough doesn't come together, sprinkle a tablespoon at a time until it does.
Divide the dough into two discs and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for about an hour.
Place the raspberries, blackberries, strawberries and blueberries in a large bowl. Sprinkle with the sugar and cornstarch and gently stir to coat.
Let the bowl sit at room temperature for 30 minutes. Transfer to a large colander to drain all the liquid. Taste a piece of each fruit to check sweetness. Add 2 tablespoons of sugar at a time until the desired level is reached.
Roll one disc of dough into a 12-inch circle, and carefully fit the dough into a 9-inch pie plate, leaving the overhang. Cover with saran wrap and freeze, about 30 minutes.
Fill the crust with the fruit mixture.
Roll out the remaining dough into a 10-inch circle or square and cut into evenly spaced strips (a pizza cutter is great for this.
Lay every other strip evenly across the pie. Then, fold back every other of those, and lay the smallest of the unused strips across. Fold the strips back over, and repeat, alternating the strips you flip over until the pie is covered. (Helpful link here.)
Trim the excess of dough to about a 1/2 inch, and crimp to form a neat edge.
Beat the egg white and brush it on top, sprinkle with the sugar.
Bake at 425 F for 25 minutes, then reduce to 375 F and bake an additional 25 to 30 minutes.
Let cool at least two hours before serving. Cover loosely with saran wrap and store at room temperature.
*I’ve swapped out up to ½ cup of whole wheat flour with positive results.
**Make sure your berries are washed and cleaned according to rabbinic instructions. If frozen are used, thaw partially before mixing with the sugar and cornstarch and be sure to drain off excess liquid. You may want to increase the cornstarch by a tablespoon.
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