Help: Classic Pie Pastry
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- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 3 tablespoons cornstarch
- ⅛ teaspoon ground cinnamon
- ⅛ teaspoon ground nutmeg
- 1 tablespoon freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 6 cups fresh blueberries, rinsed and dried
- 1 to 2 teaspoons whole milk or half and half cream
- 1 to 2 teaspoons granulated sugar
- Prepare pastry for a 9 inch double-crust pie. Line a 9 inch pie pan with the bottom pastry. Trim the pastry to a ½ inch overhang all around. Fold the edge of the dough under and press down gently around the rim to seal the edge. Leave the border plain for a rustic look or crimp as desired. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate pie shell until firm, at least 30 minutes.
- Roll out the remaining dough to a ⅛ inch thickness. Using a 2½ inch star cookie cutter, cut out about 25 stars. Tip: Dip the edges of the cookie cutter in flour before each cut to prevent the dough from sticking to the cutter. Place the stars on a flat plate or cookie sheet, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate until firm, at least 30 minutes.
- In a medium mixing bowl, combine sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon, nutmeg, and lemon juice; stir to combine. Add the blueberries and toss to coat them with the sugar mixture. Let the filling sit for 5 to 10 minutes to let the berry juice develop and the cornstarch dissolve. Spoon the blueberry mixture into the chilled pie shell, mounding the berries slightly in the center.
- Arrange the cutout pastry stars over the berries in a circular pattern, slightly overlapping the star tips.
- Cover the pie loosely with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 to 60 minutes to chill. Chilling the pie before baking helps to maintain a flaky crust and relaxes the pastry to help prevent it from shrinking while it bakes.
- While pie is refrigerating, preheat oven to 425 degrees F, allowing 15 to 20 minutes for the oven to preheat before baking.
- Remove pie from refrigerator. Using a pastry brush, lightly brush the pie rim and stars with milk or half and half cream. Sprinkle with sugar. Tip: if you don’t have a pastry brush, dip your finger in the milk and gently spread the milk over the top of the pastry.
- Bake: Line a rimmed baking sheet lined with foil or parchment paper. Place pie on the baking sheet and transfer to the oven.
- Bake 15 minutes. Reduce oven to 350 degrees F. Bake an additional 40 to 50 minutes, or until the juices are thick and bubbling and the crust is a golden brown. Rotate the pan during baking if necessary for even browning. Tip: During baking, if crust is getting too brown, loosely place a piece of foil over the top to prevent the crust from over-browning.
- Remove pie from oven. Cool completely on a wire cooling rack before cutting and serving. Tip: let the pie cool at least 4 hours to allow the juices to thicken. Otherwise the berry juices will be very liquid and will flow out of the crust when it is cut.
Stewart, Martha, Baking Handbook, Clarkson Potter, New York, 2005