Tuesday, January 08, 2013

cookies, cakes, pies and treats oh my! tasty tuesdays 2013

Oh yes..something that has been a long time coming. I bake all the time, I just don't necessarily always blog about it. But this year it is my goal to also branch out and begin baking things that are outside my comfort zone of normal weekend baking. I want to learn and master baking artisan breads and rolls. Wish me luck! I don't think I'm going to try my hand until the weather clears up and starts to begin to warm up. Our home is very cold and drafty - and I know yeast can be a fickle beast. I don't need the coldness of my house working against me as well!

So this week I bring you: Blueberry Pie! Growing up blueberry pie used to be my absolute favorite. Some birthdays my mom would even make my pie instead of cake. So what I'm about to say, seems a little shocking to me. I have only made blueberry pie a few random times. I ALWAYS make my "famous" apple pie. I think because everyone raves about how much they love my apple pie, that I don't do anything different. But what did I say above? This year is all about trying new things, making new foods and desserts and exploring. Not like blueberry pie is something radical or anything..but it's just something out of the norm for me to make. 

I normally use my grammas pie crust recipe, but I really do love how this Martha Stewart crust comes out. Its so much easier to work with and roll out.

Pie crust (via Martha Stewart November 2012 issue):
2 sticks unsalted butter, chilled, cut into pieces and divided
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
1/2 cup ice water

1. Lay out three quarters of the cubed butter pieces on parchment and freeze until hard, at least 30 minutes. Take the remaining butter and refrigerate.

2. Combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor. Add refrigerated butter and pulse to combine, roughly 10 times. Add frozen butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal with some blueberry sized clumps.

3. Add ice water, immediately pulse until water is just incorporated, about 10 times. Squeeze a small amount of dough to make sure it holds together.

4. Lay out 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Empty 1/2 the dough onto each piece. Bring the edges of wrap together to gather the dough. Press into disks.

5. Roll out the disks, still wrapped in plastic, to 1/2" thick rounds (8"). Refrigerate at least 45 minutes and up to 2 days. (dough can be frozen for up to one month)

Blueberry Pie Filling

6 cups blueberries
1/2 tsp lemon zest
1 TBS lemon juice
1/4 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 tsp cinnamon
2 TBS unsalted butter, cut into small pieces

1. Gently mix all ingredients, except for the butter in a large mixing bowl. 

2. Fill pie dish with ingredients, dotting with butter pieces

3. Bake for 20 minutes at 425, then reduce heat to 350 and bake for another 35 to 40 minutes until juices are bubbling and have thickened.

4. Transfer to wire rack and let cool completely prior to serving.

This pie came out amazing! No, we did not eat jumbo pieces - though I probably could have! We cut the quarter in half again. I was also excited to use my new pie dish. There is nothing in the photo to reference the size, but this is a "normal" sized pie dish from the potter that made my jumbo pie dish. This was one of my Christmas presents from my parents. My mom said that they special ordered the color (to match with my jumbo dish) and that when they went to pick it up it was still warm from the kiln. I love that they bought me something handmade for one of my presents. I mean, I really appreciate everything else they got for me (and for us as a couple) but I always have (obviously) a special place and am really touched when other people in my family, that normally do not purchase handmade gifts as a normal practice, go out of their way to buy. Means a lot to me. 

Anyway..the pie. Yes! Amazing. There will definitely be more blueberry pies in our future! Why do I never make blueberry pie?! 

ps. I updated my section under "bakery" in the title bar - from there you can now see a list of all the recipes I've made and posted about from the past year. Easy, peasy.