It Made Me “Famous”
My love for blueberry pie began in an unusual way. When my fiancé and I first started dating he asked me if I had ever had blueberry pie. I had not due to not being crazy about blueberries. He continued to talk about how incredible his mother’s pie was. With his mother no longer around, I decided to try to find the perfect blueberry pie recipe. I baked about 4 pies changing little things as I went before I felt like I really nailed it.
Of course there had to be some quality control by yours truly. The first bite of the first pie melted in my mouth. I couldn’t believe what I had done to myself. I couldn’t believe I had doubted this concoction.
I thought, if the first one is this good, the next one will be better and so it began. On the fourth pie, I felt it was perfect and was so excited to see if this would suffice so I eagerly asked him if it was even close to being as good as his mother’s. “She never made blueberry pie. She made apple pie…But this is great!”
So anywhoo, I began baking this at the small diner I was working at and soon had people coming in regularly for blueberry pie. Or they would ask me what day I would make another so they could come in then.
So here it is. I’m not saying it’s the world’s best but I am saying, it’s pretty damn good. And even “non cooks” can make it.
Wendi’s Blueberry Pie
You will need:
3-4 cups blueberries (frozen or fresh. There is an important trick for frozen which I will explain)
2, 9″ pie crusts or shells
2 tsp cinnamon
1/3 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp vanilla
pinch salt (1/4 tsp)
Yes. That’s it. Remember, less is more. And if you’re wondering why salt goes into a sweet recipe, stay tuned because I will address this at some point later.
Preheat oven to 425°. If blueberries are fresh, simply rinse and put in a large bowl. A lot of times the fresh ones are simply too expensive. Don’t worry. Frozen ones aren’t terrible.
**If frozen, do NOT thaw ahead of time. You want to thaw them right before you use them. If they thaw ahead of time, the juices will leak out of the berries slowly and then you rinse all the juice away. Also, do not use them frozen. All your ice will melt in your pie and melted ice = water and water and pie don’t mix.**
Pour the frozen berries into a strainer. Put this strainer in a bowl with enough tepid water in it to barely cover the blueberries. Let them sit for about 5 minutes. Stir them around and leave for 5 more minutes. Lift out the strainer and drain berries.
Put berries in large bowl. Zest lemon until you have about 1/2 tsp. and put zest aside. Cut and squeeze the juice from 1/2 a lemon over berries. (If you’ve read my lemon “tip o’ the week”, you’ll know how to avoid dropping seeds in here.)
Stir or toss. Sprinkle cinnamon and stir or toss. Add vanilla and stir.
Now add salt, sugar and flour and stir. Pour this big gooey mess into your pie shell.
Yes, you need the liquid that is there. No more, no less.
Add your top crust. VENT! Do not forget this part or you will be in big trouble. The hot air needs somewhere to escape from.
There are many ways to do this but you need to cover the edge of your crust. Either aluminum crust savers (which you can buy), strips of aluminum foil, or an aluminum pie tin with the middle cut out. If using foil, just wrap the foil around and squish it together. Sprinkle zest on top. You can also add a little sugar to the top of the crust. Bake for 1 hour or until you can see the guts bubbling from in between the flute slits. I always let mine cool overnight but minimum 4 hours is sufficient.
I like to top mine with some home-made whipped cream.