One of my students recently told me he never eats cooked fruit and therefore has no interest in fruit pies. I tried to persuade him that my blueberry pie did not really include cooked berries. The buttery crust is cooked separately and then filled with fresh low bush and high bush blueberries that are covered in a warm purple glaze. Other people in my cooking class devoured the pie, and raved about the concentrated blueberry flavor. Still, I could not convince my funny phobic friend to take even one bite.
Making an all butter crust, particularly in the summer can be challenging. If you are doing this in air conditioning and you work quickly with cool hands, and very cold ingredients, you should be successful. Blueberries go best with an all butter crust. The flavor is also heightened by lemon, which is why there’s some lemon juice in the glaze and lemon rind in the crust.
When you can find them and they are really ripe and fresh, wild blueberries are intense and sweet and preferable to big, blander cultivated berries. I once went blueberry picking in the hot sun and I can testify that bending down and raking wild blueberries is backbreaking work. No wonder people prefer to stand straight up and pluck high bush berries. I recently found both at the farmer’s market and the wild ones had been in the refrigerator truck for quite a while and were starting to wrinkle up. So I say, get the best berries available.
Do plan to blind bake the crust and let it cool. Then pour the glazed blueberries into the golden buttery piecrust and refrigerate the pie overnight so that the berries have time to set up. Take the pie out of the fridge about 30 minutes before you plan to serve it.
If you want to learn how to make a delicious pie crust, join us for our upcoming Thanksgiving Sweet & Savory pies class.
- 1 pint Maine freshly washed high bush blueberries
- 1 1/2 pints freshly washed Maine low bush blueberries
- 3/4 cup water
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon kosher salt
- 1 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon butter
- 2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 tablespoons of water
- 1 9-inch prebaked all butter crust (preferably in a glass pie plate or pie tin)
- Bring sugar, salt, one cup low bush blueberries and 3/4 cup water to boil, then let simmer for 4-5 minutes.
- Make a slurry with cornstarch and water and pour slurry into simmering berry mixture. Stir constantly till mixture thickens, about 3 minutes.
- Remove glaze from heat and add lemon juice and butter. Continue stirring until butter is completely incorporated. Set aside.
- Fill one bowl with high bush blueberries and another bowl with low bush blueberries. Put a strainer over both bowls.
- Pour half of hot glaze over strainer in bowl of high bush blueberries.
- Pour the other half of hot glaze over strainer in bowl of low bush blueberries.
- Gently mix the blueberries in both bowls so that all berries are glazed.
- Fill crust first with glazed high bush berries and then top with glazed low bush berries.
- Allow to set in refrigerator, preferably overnight. Serve with whipped cream.
- I like a combination of high bush and low bush blueberries for this pie since both berries offer different flavor profiles. I do like to place them in a particular order: big high bush blueberries go into the pie first. Then I top that layer with the wild low bush berries since they are so pretty and fill up all the crevices. Make sure you allow the pie to sit in the refrigerator. Ideally, this pie should be made the night before you plan to eat it.