I love to make pie. For me, every season has a pie. From the fresh peach pie of late summer, fall’s apple pie, Thanksgiving pies and through the winter with cream pies and back to summer again.
All summer long, I make berry pie using whatever type of berry is at its seasonal best. Over the years, I have made this recipe with raspberries, blackberries, blueberries, and schwatzenberries (wonder berries). While each version is unique, they share one thing in common: they are all delicious.
Before I began grinding fresh flour using our WonderMill, my pie crust was made using All-purpose flour. I was happy with the flavor and appearance of the white flour crust, but I wondered if substituting our freshly milled whole wheat flour for half of the recipe’s flour would make a noticeable difference. It was time to make a blackberry pie and have a taste test.
I ground a batch of hard red wheat on the pastry setting before mixing up the pie dough. After a brief chill in the refrigerator, it was ready to be rolled out and transferred to a pie plate. I spooned the blackberry filling over the bottom crust, placed a pie bird in the middle, and went to work on the top crust.
Minutes later, the top crust had taken its place and I was crimping the edges of the crust before using a sharp knife to create slits in the crust. The double crusted pie went into the oven and began to perfume the farmhouse with the lovely aroma of browning pie crust and bubbling berry filling.
When the baking time had elapsed, I removed the pie from the oven to a rack for cooling. The crust was a lovely light brown color with beautiful brown flecks from the whole wheat flour. It was difficult, but I waited until the pie had cooled to room temperature before cutting the first slice.
The first bite told me everything that I needed to know. This multigrain crust had the same flaky texture and buttery flavor that I expect from my homemade pie crust. This version had a more earthy flavor, a slightly nutty undertone that perfectly complemented the berry filling.
With each bite, I was more convinced that this pie crust was far superior to my standard version. In the end, it was a very easy decision to make. I was going to be making pie crust using our freshly milled flour courtesy of our WonderMill all year long.
To save time, I usually mix my pie crust in my food processor. This recipe can be made in a bowl using a dough blender or a large fork. Either way, the result will be a flaky, buttery crust that pairs deliciously with the berry filling.
I like to use a ceramic pie bird when baking a double crusted pie. If you don’t have a pie bird, simply cut a few more slits in the top crust to allow excess steam to escape. Doing so will ensure that your filling will be thick and that the top crust will be flaky.
- 1 cup (120 grams) freshly milled wheat flour
- 1 cup (120 grams) All-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 5 ounces butter, cubed
- 6-7 Tablespoons ice water
- 1 pound (approximately 4 cups) fresh berries
- ¾ cup (144 grams) granulated sugar
- 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 3 Tablespoons cornstarch
- 2 Tablespoons tapioca
- 4 Tablespoons water
- 3 Tablespoons butter, cubed
- To make the crust, place flour and salt in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse the dry ingredients to combine. Add the cubed butter and pulse until the butter has begun to incorporate into the flour and resembles small grains of rice.
- With the motor running, add ice water one Tablespoon at a time until the dough forms a ball. Take care not to over process the dough. Over processing will help to develop the gluten in the flour and lead to a crust that is less flaky. Remove the crust from the processor, shape into a flat disk, and place on a sheet of waxed paper or plastic wrap. Refrigerate while the filling is prepared.
- To prepare the berry filling, combine berries, sugar, vanilla, cornstarch, tapioca, and water in a large bowl. Mix gently to combine. Set aside to allow the berries to begin releasing their juices.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees Fahrenheit. Line a baking sheet with aluminum foil to catch any pie filling that may bubble over during baking. Set aside.
- Remove the chilled pie dough from the refrigerator. Cut the disk into two equal pieces. Roll the bottom crust into a smooth disk large enough to line the pie plate. Rolling will be much easier if done on a well-floured surface or between two sheets of freezer paper or waxed paper.
- Place the bottom crust in the pie plate, taking care not to stretch the dough. By gently lifting the edges of the crust, the dough will naturally come to rest on the bottom of the pie plate without stretching. Stretching the crust too much will yield a chewy crust instead of one that is flaky and light. Continue this technique around the perimeter of the pie plate.
- Stir the prepared filling before gently placing it on top of the bottom crust in the pie plate. Evenly distribute the cubed 3 Tablespoons of butter on top of the filling. Roll out the remaining portion of pie crust until it is large enough to cover the top surface of the pie. If you will be using a pie bird, place it in the middle of the filling before setting the top crust and cut a slit in the middle of the crust to accommodate the pie bird. If not, simply place the crust on top of the filling, centering it over the pie plate.
- Work around the plate, rolling the excess crust underneath to form a thick ridge along the edge of the pie. Using your fingers, flute the edge of the crust or use a fork to crimp along the edge. Continue until the entire perimeter has been sealed. Using a sharp knife, cut several slits in the surface of the top crust. Doing so will allow steam to escape from the filling as it bakes.
- Place the pie on top of the prepared baking sheet and transfer it to the preheated oven. Bake for 15 minutes before reducing the temperature to 350 degrees Fahrenheit. Continue to bake for 45-55 minutes or until the top crust is a beautiful, light golden brown. Rotating the pie midway through the baking time will help to ensure that your pie is evenly brown.
- Remove the pie from the oven and place on a wire rack to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature. Top with vanilla ice cream if desired.