My Blue Ribbon Blueberry Pie Recipe

by Girl Gone Domestic

This past week I had a little fun and entered a pie in the Snohomish Farmer’s Market 1st Annual Pie Baking Contest.  The jist of the contest was, submit a pie to be judged, possibly win a prize, and then they sell your pie by the slice to raise money for the Snohomish Food Bank.  The fruit for the filling had to be local and in season, the crust homemade.  Fun right?

Since my new favorite piecrust recipe uses leaf lard, I made a trip to the U District Farmer’s Market to visit the stand of Sea Breeze Farms to purchase some of their leaf lard.  Ingredients for perfect pie crust…check.  My choice for filling was blueberry.  After a quick search on Snohomish,org , I found Mountainview Blueberry Farm, a great U pick farm just 15 minutes from our house, and it just happened to open for the season the day before the pie contest.  Fresh Berries…check.

I spent the morning of “Market day” (as we call Thursdays in our house) baking pies, three to be exact.  After they were finished baking, I chose the best looking one and was off to the Market to submit my pie.  I was told to return at 6pm for the announcement of the winner and to claim a prize if I had won.   When I returned later, I was more than honored to be named the Queen of Pie Baking, and was presented a blue ribbon and a beautiful new Cuisinart stand mixer with blender and food processor along with it, a $450+ value, donated by Kusler’s Pharmacy.  Now I want to share my blue ribbon pie recipe with all of you, so here goes.  And for those of you who have been following my health & diet journey, no, I was not able to enjoy a piece of my pie, I am still grain/gluten free, but I have to say it is extremely fulfilling to watch people enjoy something you have prepared with your own hands, it was even better than eating a piece myself!

Photo by DGG Photo

Pie Pastry

adapted from Kate McDermott of the Art of Pie’s recipe

2 1/2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour (I used Bob’s Red Mill Organic)

8 tablespoons of leaf lard

8 tablespoons of Irish butter, cut in pieces (I used Kerrygold Irish butter)

1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

8-10 tablespoons of ice water

Put 1 1/2 cup flour in large bowl.  Place 1/2 cup flour in bowl of food processor, add butter, pulse until butter is pea sized to walnut sized chunks, being careful not to over process.  Dump into the bowl of flour.  Using another 1/2 cup flour process lard in the same way.  Dump in bowl of flour.  Sprinkle ice water over mixture and stir lightly with a fork. Add water and mix with fork until no dry flour remains and a dough somewhat comes together.  Squeeze a handful of dough together.  Divide the dough in half and make two chubby disks.  Wrap the disks separately in plastic wrap and chill in refrigerator for about an hour. Take out one disk and open plastic wrap flat onto a wet counter top or marble slab. Sprinkle some flour onto the top of the disk.  Thump the disk with a rolling pin several times. Turn it over and thump the other side.  Rub rolling pin down with flour to keep the pin from sticking and roll the crust out from the center in all directions.  When the crust is an inch or so larger than your pie pan, whisk off the excess flour of the crust with a pastry brush, lift plastic wrap and carefully flip into pan.   Put the filling in the pie and then repeat the process with the other disk.

Blueberry Pie Filling

adapted from The Treasury of Desserts

5 cups fresh blueberries, divided

1/2 cup evaporated cane juice crystals (I use Wholesome Sweetners sugars)

1/2 cup firmly packed brown sugar

2 tablespoons plus 1 1/2 teaspoons cornstarch (I use GMO free Rapunzel brand)

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 tablespoon butter

2 tablespoons quick cooking tapioca

1 egg, beaten

1 tablespoon evaporated cane juice crystals

Place 1/2 cup blueberries in resealable plastic sandwich bag. Crush berries. Pour juice and berries into strainer over liquid measuring cup. Press berries to extract all juice. Pour water over berries until juice measures 1/2 cup.  Combine sugars, cornstarch, cinnamon and salt in large saucepan. Add blueberry juice mixture. Cook and stir o medium heat until mixture boils. Remove from heat. Stir in butter. Set pan in cold water for 5 minutes to cool. Stir in tapioca. Carefully stir in remaining 4 1/2 cups blueberries. Spoon into unbaked pie crust. Moisten pastry edge with water.  Cover with top crust. Fold edge under bottom crust; flute with fingers. Brush top crust with beaten egg, sprinkle with 1 tablespoon of cane juice crystals. Cut slits in top of crust to allow steam to escape.  Bake at 425º for 15 minutes. Cover edge of crust to prevent overbrowning. Reduce oven temperature to 375º. Bake 20-25 minutes or until filling is bubbly and crust is golden brown. Cool before serving.