Fourth of July Blueberry Pie
A Fourth of July Blueberry Pie is right around the corner…or maybe that should be just inside the curve of the pie pan. Blueberries have been my favorites since I was a little girl. I remember summer evenings with my mom, dad, and brother when we would walk up to McConnell’s Ice Cream at its original spot on the corner of State and Mission Streets in Santa Barbara. The walk was less than five minutes from our house. My dad would get a scoop of rocky road, my mom had a scoop of dark double Dutch chocolate, my brother had macadamia nut, and I always asked for blueberry which was more than just a few whole blueberries mixed in with vanilla ice cream. This blueberry ice cream was totally dark purple, stained your tongue the same color, and was so good I can still remember the feel of the butter fat that coated the roof of my mouth! We walked back home licking the cold creamy treats and crunching on the sugar cones.
July 4th was too early for the blueberry harvest when I lived on a blueberry u-pick farm in the mid 90’s. The early crop came on towards the end of the month. But by July 4th, the weather had usually warmed up enough that we would set our sleeping bags between the west and north fields near the fire pit, and look up at the stars and tell stories until we fell asleep.
If blueberries are ripe where you are, here’s my recipe for Fourth of July Blueberry Pie. You can use frozen berries, too. Don’t defrost them but pop them into the filling frozen and just make the pie. It turns out just fine and you can enjoy it all year long. Add a few strawberries under the crust for a red, white, and blue delight!
- 1 recipe Art of the Pie Dough double crust pie dough
- 6 cups sweet blueberries, fresh or frozen
- 3/4 cups sugar plus 1-2 teaspoons more for sprinkling the top
- small pinch of ground nutmeg
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon fresh squeezed lemon juice
- 1 tablespoon orange liqueur like Cointreau or zest of one small organic orange (optional)
- 1/2 cup flour
- 1 tablespoon quick cooking tapioca
- 1/2 tablespoon butter
- 1 egg white mixed with 1 tablespoon water
- Preheat oven to 425F.
- Put blueberries, sugar, nutmeg, salt, optional orange liqueur or citrus zest, flour, and quick cooking tapioca in a big bowl, and mix lightly until the fruit is coated.
- Roll out the bottom dough and place in your pie pan.
- Add the blueberry filling and dot with little pieces of butter...if you remember. (I always seem to forget the butter!)
- Roll out remaining dough, lay over the fruit, and cut 5 to 6 vents on top, or cut strips and make a lattice top.
- Trim excess dough from edges and crimp.
- Brush crust with some egg white wash and sprinkle evenly and lightly with 1-2 teaspoons of sugar.
- If it's a hot day, place pie in refrigerator to chill while oven is preheating to 425°F.
- Bake for 20 minutes at 425F. Reduce heat to 350F and bake for 35-40 minutes more.
- Look for the steady bubbling of the fruit filling through the vents or lattice work to make sure the filling is fully cooked.