Blueberry Crumble Pie

If you ask anyone what the best things about Summer are, you're likely to hear things like: longer days! the sunshine and warm weather! whole days at the beach/pool! shorts and sandals! ice cream cones and lemonade! All acceptable answers, of course. I love these things too. If you're talking to a foodie/food blogger, however, you're likely to get different answers, things like: zucchini and corn! strawberries and cherries! basil and tomatoes! watermelon and blueberries! Indeed, summer is a season where so many fantastic ingredients are at their very best, making it a wonderful few months to cook in (not to mention it's just the time of year for barbecues, picnics, and dinners outside). 

But back to that last one, blueberries! Nothing quite says Summer like blueberries, eaten plain by the handful, used in berry shortcakes, or baked into cobblers, crisps, and, my very favorite option, pies. This Blueberry Crumble Pie is the very pinnacle of Summer pie perfection -- here we have a sweet juicy blueberry filling balanced out with a bit of citrus, poured into a buttery, flaky crust and topped off with a spicy sweet cinnamon crumble. A note on this crumble: not only is it delicious, it's also far easier than your usual lattice pie crust -- no need to roll out and cut and position dough on the pie, just combine your ingredients and crumble (hence the name) them over the top. This recipe would be perfect for any Fourth of July celebration you've been invited to this weekend, likely to overshadow any fireworks that are planned. Really.

A couple of notes: You could easily use a mix of raspberries and blueberries in this pie (served with a scoop of vanilla ice cream or whipped cream, you have a red, white, and blue theme perfect for the Fourth). The pie crust dough can be made up to two days ahead, and refrigerated wrapped in plastic wrap. You could probably use a store-bought pie crust here if you wanted to make things easier, but I always use the recipe below. The original recipe said that the pie would take about 1 hour and 15 minutes to bake, but I found mine was done in less than an hour -- every oven varies. I found that the crumble browned way too quickly (as you can see in the photos) so if this happens to you, just cover the pie with some aluminum foil. This pie should be allowed to sit at room temperature for a few hours before serving to allow it to set -- you can make it up to 8 hours ahead and leave it to sit at room temperature. Enjoy!

BLUEBERRY CRUMBLE PIE

Crust:
1 1/4 cups unbleached all-purpose flour plus more for surface
1/2 cup (1 stick) chilled unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1/2 teaspoon kosher salt

For the filling:
2/3 cup plus 3 tablespoons sugar
2 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 teaspoon lemon zest plus 2 tablespoons lemon juice 
5 cups (about 26 ounces) fresh blueberries
3/4 cup unbleached all-purpose flour

    For the crumble:
    3 tablespoons dark brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and cooled 

    Freshly whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, for serving

For the crust: Pulse 1 1/4 cups flour, butter, and salt in a food processor until mixture resembles sand. Drizzle 3 tablespoons ice water over mixture. Pulse until the dough starts to come together, adding more water by teaspoonfuls if mixture is dry. Transfer dough to a lightly floured work surface. Divide into 4 equal pieces. Working with 1 piece at a time, use the heel of your hand to smear each portion of dough twice in a forward motion to distribute butter. Gather all 4 dough pieces into a ball. Flatten into a disk, wrap in plastic, and chill dough until firm, at least 1 hour. 

Roll out dough on a lightly floured surface to a 13" round. Transfer to pie dish, pressing the dough onto bottom and up sides of dish. Fold overhang under and crimp edges decoratively. Pierce bottom of crust in several places with a fork, then chill until firm, about 30 minutes.

Line a large baking sheet with foil and place on a rack in middle of oven; preheat to 375°F. Line crust with parchment paper or foil and fill with pie weights. Bake until crust is set, about 20 minutes. Carefully remove parchment and pie weights. Bake until crust is pale golden, about 12 minutes longer. Transfer crust to a wire rack; let cool.

For the filling: Whisk 2/3 cup sugar, cornstarch, and lemon zest in a large bowl. Add blueberries and lemon juice; toss gently to coat and evenly distribute. Let filling stand, tossing occasionally, until berries release their juices, 20-30 minutes. 



For the topping: Whisk flour, remaining 3 tablespoons sugar, light brown sugar, cinnamon, and salt in a medium bowl. Add melted butter; mix topping with fingertips to blend. 

Preheat the oven to 375°. Spoon the filling into the crust.


Sprinkle the crumble over the pie. Bake the pie until the filling is bubbling and the topping is golden, about 1 hour 15 minutes. Cover the pie with aluminum foil after 30 minutes if browning too fast. 

Let pie cool on a wire rack. Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream if desired. Serves 8-10.  

Recipe from www.epicurious.com



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