Happy Pi Day! Get it? 3.14? Today is March 14? 3.14? And seriously, this year is 3/14/15 and if you stretch pi out a little longer, it’s 3.1415…
But I digress…whether you’re into math or not, it’s a great day to celebrate with a pie. There are lots of pies out there to choose from. This Open-Faced Rustic Berry Pie is a great choice – it tastes great, it doesn’t take much time to prepare and as the “rustic” suggests, it doesn’t have to be perfect and look like a masterpiece that should be in the Pie Smithsonian.
Use whatever kind(s) of berries you want – this time I chose strawberries because I had a bunch in the freezer from last year that I wanted to use up (gotta make room for more this year!).
Open-Faced Rustic Berry Pie
from The King Arthur Flour Baker’s Companion
1 9″ pie crust (I used KAF’s Guaranteed Pie Crust and used half)
2/3 c sugar
3 T pie filling thickener of your choice (tapioca or cornstarch)
3 c berries, fresh or frozen and thawed (see note in “my comments” section below)
What To Do
Preheat oven to 425ºF.
Roll the crust into a 12- to 13-inch round and transfer to a pizza pan or baking sheet.
In a medium-sized bowl, blend together the sugar and thickener. Add the berries, tossing to coat.
Mound the sugared berries in the center of the crust, leaving about a 3.5″ margin of bare crust all the way around. Using a pancake turner or giant spatula, fold the edges of the crust up over the fruit, leaving 4-5″ of fruit exposed in the center.
Bake the pie for about 35 minutes, or until the filling is beginning to bubble and the edges of the crust are brown. Remove it from the oven and let it cool for about 15 – 30 minutes before cutting wedges.
For pie filling thickener, I used cornstarch.
I used frozen fruit and thawed it. Next time I will DRAIN the fruit before adding to the sugar and cornstarch. I highly recommend draining it because there was a lot of “juice” and although I used a slotted spoon to put the berries onto the crust, there was too much liquid and some of it baked out and burned on my pizza pan.
I dusted my cooled pie with powdered sugar just because I thought it’d be prettier.
Some Photos Along the Way
I happen to have 12″ round parchment papers so I rolled my crust onto it then slid the whole thing onto the pizza pan. I did measure 3.5″ from the edges so I’d know how much to spread the berries out. See that extra liquid? I think that’s what leaked out and burned onto the pan. And see that bowl? There was a whole lot of juice in there – I’m saving it for something, not sure what yet…
Here are the edges of the pie folded up. I started out using my bench knife but then just lifted the parchment paper up and the crust fell onto the berries.
I think there’s room to be creative with these pies. I already know next time I’m going to use one cup each of three different kinds of berries. What about adding some chocolate chips with strawberries? Or drizzle with glaze or ganache? Add a dollop of whipped cream? Or make a rectangle instead of a circle? Or brush the crust with some egg wash and sprinkle with sugar? Hmmm…
Pie on Pi Day (or any day) is just a great idea. I hope you enjoy, especially at 9:26:53 both this morning and this evening! 🙂