Try this twist on a traditional berry pie
By A Brown Table
If you've noticed on Instastories, I've been going crazy over our neighbors huge stack of passion fruit vines that keep dropping their fruit all over the sidewalk. Every day when I take Snoopy on our walk, I make sure we get some passion fruit (this also makes M think I'm a little crazy). I guess I'm urban foraging??? But who can say no to free fruit and produce grown on your street, not me! That beautiful guava like taste is so delicious and I think it is one of the most under-appreciated fruits of fall.
I like the purple variety of passion fruit because it is less acidic than the other cultivars. All you need to do is scoop out the yellow flesh with the seeds in a strainer kept over a bowl and expel the liquid by gentle pressing the flesh against the sides. The delicious yellow liquid will be released and you can discard what's left behind in the strainer. You will need to sweeten it a little and then you should be good to use the liquid in whatever way you want to.
Here are some of my kitchen tips that you might find useful when preparing this pie;
- Use a European style butter to prepare the crust because of it's high fat content. Your crust will be flakier.
- I use Bob's Red Mill whole-wheat pastry flour, gluten content can vary a little between different brands so keep this in mind.
- I prefer to thicken the passion fruit liquid separately before adding it to the blueberries. I also chill the thickened liquid once I'm done because
- My blueberries were very sweet and the passion fruit wasn't too acidic. I recommend tasting your fruit before you decide on how much to sweeten it. I'm not a big fan of overly sweet pies where all you can taste is the sugar and not the fruit or crust. Starting with less sugar is always good.
Standard double crust pie dough (pastry recipe adapted from the Baking Bible by Rose Levy Beranbaum)
yields: one 9 inch double crust pie
12 tablespoons (1 1/2 sticks/170gm) unsalted butter, chilled
290gm whole wheat pastry flour
1/2 teaspoon fine grain sea salt
2 teaspoons fine grain sugar
1/4 teaspoon baking powder
128gm cream cheese, cold
3 tablespoons heavy cream or whole milk
1 tablespoon (15mL) cider vinegar
Blueberry and passion fruit filling
1 cup (236mL) passion fruit pulp liquid with no seeds (see notes on how to extract)
2 tablespoons + 4 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
6 cups (760g) blueberries
1/4 cup + 1 tablespoon (64g) finegrain sugar
1. Cube the butter into small chunks, wrap with plastic film and freeze for 30 minutes.
2. Dry whisk the flour, salt, sugar and baking powder and freeze in an airtight container for 30minutes. Attach the dough blade to a food processor, then put the flour mixture into the bowl of the food processor. Cube the cream cheese into 4 pieces and add it to the flour. Pulse the mixture for about 30 seconds until it resembles coarse meal. Add the cubes of frozen butter and pulse until the butter cubes are reduced to the size of small peas. Add the cream (or milk) and cider vinegar and pulse until the entire mixture resembles chunky particles. Transfer this to a dry clean gallon ziploc bag. Remove most of the air from the bag and then seal it. Using the heel of your hand knead and press the mixture from the outside of the bag to bring the dough together. Open the bag and transfer the dough to a large sheet of cling film. Form a large ball of dough and then divide it into two equal halves. Wrap with cling film and refrigerate for at least 45 minutes before using (you can make the dough up to 2 days in advance).
3. Roll out each block of pastry into 1/8 inch thick discs between two sheets of parchment paper, using minimal flour as you roll to prevent it from sticking. Cut one circle of 12 inches diameter and line the bottom of a 9 inch pie dish carefully. Trim off any pastry overhangs using a scissors. Wrap the pie dish with cling film and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Cut another 12 inch circle from the second disc of rolled out pastry and make cut outs of any shapes using a small cookie cutter. I used a flower stencil to cut out patterns but you can use any shape you like. (Since this is a blueberry and passion fruit filled pie, there is a lot of liquid which needs to be released and you will have to vent the pie by making some sort of holes or slits in the top crust).
4. In the mean time start to prepare the filling. Pour the passion fruit liquid into a medium-sized saucepan, reserve two tablespoons of the liquid in a small bowl. Add the 2 tablespoons of cornstarch to the reserve fruit liquid and whisk to make a slurry. Heat the passion fruit liquid on medium-high heat until it just starts to boil. Quickly whisk in the cornstarch slurry and cook for about 3 to 4 minutes with constant whisking until it thickens. Remove from stove and allow to cool over an ice-water bath. Place the blueberries in a large mixing bowl, add the remaining cornstarch and sugar and fold with a silicone spatula to coat evenly. Remove and unwrap the chilled pie dish from the refrigerator, transfer the blueberries to the pie and then pour the cooled and thickened passion fruit liquid over the berries. Wrap the pie dish with cling film and return to the refrigerator. Place the second 12 inch circle of pastry over the over the pie filling and fold the edges of the first one and crimp the edges. Decorate the top with the cutout flowers if using the same pattern in the photos. Brush the base of the cutout flowers with a little water to help glue them to the surface of the pastry. Wrap the pie dish with cling film and refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours before baking.
5. To bake the pie, place a wire rack at the lowest level in the oven. Take a pizza stone and wrap it with aluminum foil and place it on the wire rack and preheat the oven to 425F. Wait an additional 20 minutes before baking the pie in the oven. Just before baking, remove the pie from the refrigerator and unwrap the cling film, line the edges of the pie crust with aluminum foil and bake for 1 hour until the fruit juices start to bubble, rotating the pie dish halfway through the baking process. The crust will be golden brown when done. Remove the baked pie from the oven and discard the aluminum foil, allow to cool on a wire rack completely before serving. This pie can be refrigerated for up to 4 to 5 days.
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