Summer Berry Pie


Berry Pie

There is an obvious lack of desserts on my blog. For one reason, I prefer savory over sweet any time, any day. But the other reason is that if I do make dessert, I’ll eat it. I mean, I’ll finish it.

When I made the mille crêpe cake for my birthday a while back, my husband and I both had a piece, and then I asked him if he’d want more. He shook his head no. He can get a little carried away as well, like when you get a hankering for that dessert that you know is in the fridge, and it’s 9 o’clock at night.

So into the garbage went that beautiful cake. I know, a waste, but I don’t really know anyone who wants to eat desserts either.

Recently I saw a Strawberry Slab Pie online. It was probably on Pinterest, and when I clicked on the pretty photo it went to the Country Living website.

It’s a strawberry pie baked in a jelly-roll pan and decorated with flowers. A fruit dessert is typically healthier than, say, a chocolate cheesecake to have sitting in the refrigerator taunting me at night. But what intrigued me about this pie is what the pie-maker did with the flower cut-outs of crust.

As with my mille crepe cake, this would be another baking/pastry challenge for me, because I’ve never done much more with pie crust dough than lattice.

First I had to locate some flower cookie cutters, which I found on Sur La Table.

What I also like about this pie is that the filling is basically all berries, plus a little sugar and cornstarch. None of that goopy pie-filling-like stuff.

Here’s the recipe:

Summer Berry Pie

1 pie crust for 10″ pie
All-purpose flour, for work surface
3/4 cup granulated sugar
6 tablespoons cornstarch
2 1/2 pound strawberries, hulled, sliced
1 pound whole blueberries
1 large egg white

To make the pie, preheat oven to 425°F with the rack in lowest position. On a lightly floured surface, roll 2 recipes of dough. Transfer to a pan and trim. Crimp and chill.

I obviously used a shallow, large, round terracotta pan to make this pie instead of a jelly-roll pan.

Roll remaining dough to 1/8- to 1/4-inch thick. Cut dough with assorted flower-shaped cutters. Transfer flowers to prepared baking sheet, and chill.

Stir together sugar and cornstarch in a bowl. Add strawberries and blueberries and toss gently to combine.

Transfer to bottom crust, packing tightly into pan.

Whisk together egg white and 2 teaspoons water in a bowl. Brush dough flowers with egg wash. Arrange dough flowers, slightly overlapping, on top of berries. Brush edges of dough with egg wash.

Freeze 20 minutes while preheating the oven to 425 degrees F.

Bake the pie in the middle of the oven for 50-60 minutes. I had to adjust the temperature after 30 minutes; my crust browned too much. If this happens, place a piece of foil over the top of the pie and continue baking at 400 degrees.

Remove the pie from the oven and let cool until set. Serve warm or at room temperature.

I served the pie with whipped cream.

I baked some pie-crust cookies separately, and stuck one in the whipped cream for decoration. I’m obviously not a stylist. So I ate it instead.

So, although a bit challenging but not stressful, I will leave the fancy pie-crust makers to their fancy pie crusts. The good thing is that the pie itself was very good.

I love that it’s just about crust and berries.

Check out this pie from Williams-Sonoma.

75 thoughts on “Summer Berry Pie

  1. Beautiful pie, Mimi – my favorite pie decorating was making a Della Robbia apple ring, onto which I applied vines, fruits, and leaves of dough… then made egg paints using yolk and food coloring… and painted the thing. It was a work of art… and then everyone ate it without even noticing how beautiful it was. Never again…

    Lucky for me, when I make a lot of baked goods, I work at an college filled with young, hungry students. All my leftovers come to work!

    • Oh yeah, that would be depressing. You are definitely more artistic and patient than I am. Good you have a way to relieve yourself of leftovers. I think I’ll just stick to cooking!

  2. This is my kind of dessert, loads of fruit, not too much sugar. I have a sweet toothed husband. I divide leftovers into serving portions and pop them in the freezer for the times he’s turning the cupboards inside out. I’ll pinch the cut out pie crust idea, it’s a beauty

    • Well it certainly can be. In the Williams-Sonoma photo i think they baked the stars separately, and sugared them, then placed them on the pie. But it’s so beautiful. Funny what you do with leftover desserts!

  3. I think your pie looks lovely! Love that fruity filling, too. Like you, I rarely make desserts and cakes unless we have guests or I’m giving them away as gifts, but I’ll be pinching this idea next time I make a fruit tart. Lx

    • You’ll do a much better job with the pastry end of things. It’s just my lack of artistry and obviously my lack of patience. I’ll stick to cooking!

      • I don’t have much patience either! And I very much doubt it would be any better than yours, I can almost taste it. It’s daft, really, I have a freezer full of fruit from last year’s harvest that I really need to use up but we don’t eat desserts often enough. Maybe I’ll turn it all into fruit gin! Lx

      • I’ve made cherry and strawberry vodkas and they were incredible. I just made watermelon margaritas and will do the same with some ripe peaches I froze. Maybe if the kids were around, but with just the two of us I don’t buy bushels of fruit. I’d rather eat it as is. I don’t even make jams anymore…

      • I make jam but rarely eat it! It’s popular when the family come though. My husband eats marmalade year round, he’s like Paddington Bear. :)

      • Ha! If i see jam, then I’ll have to make toast. Then i want to add cheese, and then I’d mad because i just ate 500 calories. So i just don’t make jam.

      • I didn’t think so…it would be along the lines of Manchego with membrillo… on cheese platters there are often condiments to pair with cheeses, like lemon curd with a blue cheese, or a chutney or jam with a goat cheese…

  4. I am not a huge dessert person, but in the summer, fruit desserts are so good every now and then. We have tons of fresh peaches at the moment. Your pie looks pretty and delicious, and I was so glad to read in the comments above that you didn’t throw the rest of it out! You have more willpower than I do. ;-)

  5. I so love making pies (and I am pretty good, if I can say so myself). But I tend to have your same problem: if I make them, I eat way more than I should. With my birthday coming up, I am already plotting desserts for three different occasions (yes, I do like to stretch it out).

  6. Love pie. And yes, we eat it too. So we only make desserts when we’re having company over. Or when we’re SURE we know where we can get rid of the leftovers. Good stuff — thanks.

  7. I am not a pie crust maker. In fact, when my mom’s here, she makes enough pie crust pastry for me to freeze and use later. Love your take on this recipe!

  8. I make pies individual, then there are no leftovers to tempt you. Just anger with yourself because you only made one!!!

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