Longing for Spring Berry Pie
I was intending to make a strawberry rhubarb pie recently but it turned out I was pushing the rhubarb season. Not to thwart my yearning for something that tasted spring-summery, I decided to mix raspberries with the strawberries instead. You can use any mix of berries in this recipe, but if you are adding rhubarb, just use a bit less flour (2 tablespoons) and a bit more sugar (1 cup) or to taste.
1 1/2 c. flour
1 T. sugar
1/4 t. salt
1 t. lemon zest
3/4 c. cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
1/2 t. vanilla mixed with about 3 T. very cold water
4 c. strawberries, sliced
1 c. raspberries
3 T. flour
2/3 c. sugar
1 t. lemon zest
1 T. unsalted butter (cut into small bits to top the berries)
1 T. milk, for brushing on lattice crust
For the pastry: Combine flour, sugar, salt and lemon zest in the bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine. Add the butter, and pulse again until the butter is in small pieces ~ the mixture should be the texture of very coarse cornmeal. (Alternatively, combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl and cut the butter with a pastry cutter.)
If you’ve used a processor, pour the ingredients into a large bowl ~ this step enables you to slowly add the liquid and lightly combine it with the dry ingredients so that the dough does not get overworked as it sometimes does in a processor. Now slowly add the vanilla and water, stirring with a fork just until the mixture starts to come together as a dough. Add a little more water if necessary…the amount of liquid depends on the type of flour you are using. Using your hands, work the dough together until it forms a ball. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and refrigerate for an hour or so.
For the filling: Mix the fruit with the flour, sugar and zest and let stand while you roll out the pastry.
Cut off about 2/3 of the dough and roll it on a lightly floured surface large enough to fill a 9″ pie plate.
Pile in the berry filling, dot with butter, and top with strips of remaining dough to form a lattice crust. Brush the lattice with milk and sprinkle lightly with sugar.
Place pie plate on a cookie sheet and bake in a preheated 400º oven for 30 minutes. Turn oven down to 350º and cook another 30 minutes or until pastry is golden brown and fruit filling is bubbling around the edges. If the pastry browns before the filling is cooked, cover lightly with foil.