I used to think that our family was a strictly pie-for-Thanksgiving family. We make some pretty nice pecan and pumpkin pies every November, but for the rest of the year, we stick to cookies, cakes, and frozen desserts for our special occasions. There’s some logic to this; pies are a ton of work and unless you have a lot of practice, the idea of rolling and crimping a pie crust can be slightly daunting. You can’t just whip together a pie like you can a batch of bar cookies.
Then, we took a trip to Scandinavia and tasted the best berry pie in all of Oslo. Inside a single-serving pie crust was a rich blueberry filling that tasted and smelled exactly like wild-blueberries—the perfect complement to a simple crumble topping.
Obviously I had to make a pie like this at home, so barely a week after getting back, 40 of our closest friends were sitting alongside us at the neighborhood pool eating cake, cupcakes, and blueberry crumble pie for one final summer potluck before the eight soon-to-be college freshmen scatter across to world to Seattle, Rochester, Davis, Madison, Tel Aviv, and Boston. Some of those friends I’ve known since I was just three, and sitting there with all of them made me feel so lucky to have grown up with such great friends.
Not a single crumb of this pie was left over from that night, because between the thick layer of blueberries that burst into a jam-like filling in the heat of the oven, the flaky layer of pie crust, and the sweet, buttery crumble, it’s easy to see why it was such a hit.
On a final note, a few of you have asked what will happen to this blog once I’m at Tufts. At the moment, I don’t have any more recipe posts planned, and I have a feeling I’ll be pretty busy studying and exploring Boston. That being said, if I have some free time and a post idea in my head, I may pop in! Thank you so much to each and every one of you for reading and cooking along with me for the past 15 months.
Blueberry Crumble Pie
Adapted from Joanne Eats Well With Others
Crust from The Smitten Kitchen Cookbook
Makes one 9-inch pie
1 ¼ cups all-purpose flour
½ tablespoon granulated sugar
½ teaspoon salt
8 tablespoons (1 stick) unsalted butter, frozen and cut into ¼ inch cubes
2-3 tablespoons ice water
2/3 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
2 ½ tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon lemon zest
2 tablespoons lemon juice
5 cups blueberries, fresh or frozen
3 tablespoons brown sugar
½ teaspoon cinnamon
¼ teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons melted unsalted butter
¾ cup all-purpose flour
For the crust:
- Whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt in a medium bowl. Add the butter to the bowl and rub the butter quickly into the flour using your fingers until the butter is in small bits and uniformly distributed into the flour. Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of the water over the flour and fold gently with a rubber spatula. If the dough still doesn’t come together, add up to 1 tablespoon more of water. Transfer the dough to a lightly floured countertop and gather it into a six inch disk. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours and up to 2 days.
- Once the dough has chilled, unwrap the dough and place it on a lightly floured countertop. Roll the dough out into a circle of even thickness, 12 inches in diameter. Carefully fold the dough in half, then half again, then place it in a nine-inch round glass pie pan. Fold any excess overhang of the pie crust under itself to create a rim on the top of the pan, then crimp the edges using a pincer grasp on your dominant hand and your index finger on your non-dominant hand. Place the dough in the freezer for 20 minutes to chill.
- While the dough is chilling, preheat the oven to 350F. Remove the chilled dough from the freezer and place a double layer of aluminum foil in the base of the pie pan with an ample overhang. Fill the bowl of aluminum foil with ceramic pie weights or dried beans, then bake the pie crust in the preheated oven for 15 minutes. Remove the pan from the oven, and carefully lift off the foil and pie weights. If the crust has collapsed at all, gently nudge it up the edges of the pan with a butter knife or small spoon.
For the filling:
- While the pie pan of dough is in the freezer, prepare the filling. Whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, lemon zest, and lemon juice in a large bowl. Add the blueberries and toss to combine, then let sit for 20-30 minutes while the pie crust chills and bakes.
For the crumble:
- While the pie crust bakes, assemble the crumble. In a medium bowl, whisk together the brown sugar, cinnamon, salt, and melted butter until smooth. Add the flour and stir until incorporated.
To assemble and bake the pie:
- Once you have removed the pie crust from the oven, turn the oven temperature up to 375F. Pour the blueberry mixture into the prebaked pie shell. Using your fingers, break off pieces of the crumble topping and scatter them over the surface of the blueberries in an even layer. Bake the pie on the middle rack of the preheated oven for 55-75 minutes until the filling is bubbling, the berries have begun to break down, and the crumble is golden brown. Remove the pie from the oven and let cool on a wire rack for at least 2 hours before slicing and serving.