Confessions of a pie maker: I like eating them. I hate making them.
I can admit it, my pie making: dubious—yes, this might possibly be an indication of some poor kitchen breeding (damn, is that a suicide statement or what?). But in my defense, the individual components-the filling and the crust-is exacting and great in flavor. It’s in assembling the pie that everything seems to bottom out (much like my cake carving skills, seen here). Sure it’s delicious, but who wants to qualify their food with a disclaimer that goes, “Never mind the sloppy finish, it tastes great”.
Well, knowing my weakness and consistency for turning out double-crusted pies that often resembles a 4th grader’s uneven and patch-work pottery project, I opted for a lattice top crust. Even with that, I skipped the strip-cutting and weaving and reached for a lattice stencil. Call that cheating or what you like, but it works for me. This is definitely one of my better looking pies, even if the bottom portion of the lattice is mangled a bit (see lead shot).
Ah well. Practice, practice, practice . . . and more practice. For now—let’s have some Blackberry Lime Pie.
- 2 ½ cups unbleached all purpose flour
- 3 tablespoons sugar
- ¼ teaspoon salte
- 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into ½ inch cubes
- 1/2 cup vegetable shortening
- 4-6 tablespoons ice water
- 1 ½ lbs. blackberries
- ¾ -1 cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 tablespoon lime zest
- 2 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted
- 1 egg white lightly beaten
- 2 tablespoons coarse sugar
Preparation: Place bakesheet on lower third oven rack and heat oven to 400 degrees F.
To make pastry
- Place flour, sugar and salt in a bowl and whisk to combine. Add butter and shortening, using a pastry blender or two forks, cut into the flour until mixture resembles coarse meal (or place in a food processor bowl and pulse). Add 4 tablespoons ice water and stir (or pulse until dough comes together). Dough should hold together when squeezed and released. If not, add remaining water, 1 tablespoon at time, until dough does hold when squeezed and released.
- Turn dough out onto a lightly floured work surface. Using the heel of your hand and working in small portions smear each part out in one forward motion. Gather portions and form into one ball, divide dough into two with one portion being 2/3 and the other 1/3.
To make filling
- Combine blackberries and ¾ cups sugar in a bowl with sugar, toss and taste; add more sugar as needed. Add in cornstarch, lime juice, lime zest and melted butter, toss to combine and lightly mash a few berries. Let rest for 20 minutes, making sure to toss mixture every 5 minutes.
- Roll out larger piece of dough into a 12 inch round. Transfer to a 9 inch pie plate. Roll out remaining dough into a 13x11 rectangle and cut crosswise 1/2inch wide strips with a pastry wheel
- Pour blackberry mixture into shell. Arrange lattice strips on top of filling. Trim lattice strips to edge of pan. Roll up bottom crust over lattice edge and crimp. Brush top with egg white and sprinkle coarse sugar on top.
- Bake on heated bakesheet for about an hour or until crust is golden brown and filling is bubbling. Check pie at 45 minutes. If the crust is browning too quickly, place foil or pie shield on top and continue to bake. Remove from oven once ready and allow to cool on a wire rack for at least 1 ½ to 2 hours before serving.