Sunday, August 17, 2008

Facing Fears

"The only thing we have to fear is fear itself." Franklin D. Roosevelt
"You must do things you think you cannot do." Eleanor Roosevelt

Taking to heart the inspirational words of this fine American couple, I decided to tackle my fear of pie making again before the summer slips away and all of the fresh fruits and berries are long gone. I recalled making a couple of pies a few years ago for Thanksgiving when my mother was here visiting and I used a pate brisee recipe for the crusts and they turned out fairly well. I chalked their success up to the fact that my mother was in the kitchen with me bringing me good cooking Karma. That theory is now put to the test, as is that pie crust recipe.

Pate Brisee Pie Crust
(Makes two 9-10inch crusts)
2 sticks very cold butter cut into 1/2 inch cubes
2 1/2 cups all purpose flour
1 tsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water
In processor bowl pulse flour, sugar and salt together 3-4 times. Add butter and mix until a coarse crumble forms, no more than 30 seconds. Very slowly add water through the feed tube of the processor with the machine going, adding just enough so that mixture holds together when pinched together. Divide the dough into two and form into smooth circles, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 30 minutes but as long as overnight. If overnight, take dough out for 30 minutes prior to rolling it out.
Above: Ingredients for pie dough.
Above: Processed dough holding together nicely.Above: Dough balls ready for the Big Chill overnight.
The next step in my process was to make the berry filling, roll out the crusts and put the pie together and it worked BEAUTIFULLY! I have finally found a pie crust that works for me and I will never ever waver from it again. No more lard, no more shortening, no more vinegar, just pure butter and lots of it.
Above: The Willamette Valley's delicious berries-Marion and Blackberries with a sprinkle of lemon zest.

The berry filling consisted of 3 cups of Marionberries and 1 cup of blackberries and a couple teaspoons of lemon zest which were coated with a slurry of 2 Tbsp. cornstarch mixed with 1/4 cup of water and 3/4 cup of sugar. The bottom crust was rolled out and filled with the berries, then the top crust was rolled out and put on top and crimped and a few slits were put in the top crust to let steam escape. Then the top was brushed lightly with cream and sprinkled it with sugar. It baked at at 450 deg for the first 10 minutes then turned down the heat to 350 deg where it stayed for another 45 minutes. Approximately 10 minutes prior to taking it out, the edges were covered with foil so as not to burn. A baking sheet was kept under the pie during baking to prevent spillage all over the oven. Above: Pie ready for the oven, glazed with cream and a sprinkle of sugar.
Above: Finished pie in all it's glory.

I served the pie ala mode with homemade vanilla ice cream. Pie Oh My Indeed!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

Here is another one:

will never ever waiver from it again

Should be:

will never ever waver from it again