Liz * Summer Berry Pie
Well, pardon my unannounced hiatus. I spend my days staring into little Rylie's blue eyes, and when I'm not doing that, I'm soothing her cries. We've also had some work done in our apartment which was cause for Rylie and I to vacate the premises for a few days last week, so things have been a bit topsy turvy. I did, however, find time to make this most delicious Summer Berry Pie, in honor of the last weekend of summer. It was just as wonderful as this this one and this one. We woke up ealry on Saturday and went to the Santa Monica Farmer's Market to get the best berries available. The recipe is from the book, The New Best Recipe. I talk more about how much I love this book here when I made the best cupcakes ever from the same volume. This pie was simple to put together and perfect for summer because it required very little use of the oven. We've already polished off the whole thing, but I savored evey little bite, knowing that it will be a while before the berries taste like summer again. Here is the recipe below as it appears in The New Best Recipe.
Summer Berry Pie
Makes one 9-inch pie, serving 8 to 10.
Berries are not sold in standard half-pint containers. When shopping for ingredients, use the weights on the containers as a guideline, but make sure to measure out the berries (gently, to avoid bruising). If you wind up short on one type of berry but have extras of another type, make up the difference with the extras. If blackberries are not available, use 3 cups each of raspberries and blueberries. When pureeing the berries, be sure to process them for a full minute; otherwise, the yield on the puree may be too small. Apple jelly can be substituted if red currant jelly is unavailable.
Graham Cracker Crust
9 graham crackers, broken into rough pieces
2 tablespoons granulated sugar
5 tablespoons unsalted butter, melted and warm
2 cups fresh raspberries (about 9 ounces)
2 cups fresh blackberries (about 11 ounces)
2 cups fresh blueberries (about 10 ounces)
1/2 cup granulated sugar (3 1/2 ounces)
3 tablespoons cornstarch
1/8 teaspoon of table salt
1 tablespoon lemon juice from 1 lemon
2 tablespoons red currant jelly
1 cup heavy cream (cold)
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1. For the crust: Adjust oven rack to middle position and heat oven to 325 degrees.
2. In food processor, process graham crackers until evenly fine, about 30 seconds (you should have 1 cup crumbs). Add sugar and pulse to combine. Continue to pulse while adding warm melted butter in steady stream; pulse until mixture resembles wet sand. Transfer crumbs to 9-inch glass pie plate; form crust using 1/2-cup dry measuring cup. Bake crust until fragrant and beginning to brown, 15 to 18 minutes; transfer to wire rack and cool completely while making filling.
3. For the filling: Combine berries in large colander and gently rinse (taking care not to bruise them); spread berries on paper towel-lined rimmed baking sheet and gently pat dry with additional paper towels.
4. In food processor, puree 2 1/2 cups mixed berries until smooth and fully pureed, about 1 minute. Strain puree through mesh strainer into small nonreactive saucepan, scraping and pressing on seeds to extract as much puree as possible (you should have 1 1/4 to 1 1/2 cups). Whisk sugar, cornstarch, and salt in small bowl to combine, then whisk mixture into puree. Bring puree to boil over medium heat, stirring constantly with wooden spoon; when mixture reaches a boil and is thickened to consistency of pudding, remove from heat, stir in lemon juice, and set aside to cool slightly.
5. While puree is cooling, place remaining berries in medium bowl. Heat jelly in second small saucepan over low heat until fully melted; drizzle melted jelly over berries and toss gently to coat. Pour slightly cooled puree into cooled pie shell; top with fresh berries. Loosely cover pie with plastic wrap; refrigerate until chilled and puree has set, about 3 hours (or up to 1 day).
6. For the whipped cream: Just before serving, beat cream, sugar, and vanilla with electric mixer on low speed until small bubbles form, about 30 seconds. Increase speed to medium; continue beating until beaters leave trail, about 30 seconds longer. Increase speed to high; continue beating until cream is smooth, thick, nearly doubled in volume, and forms soft peaks, about 30 to 60 seconds.
7. Cut pie into wedges and serve with whipped cream.
Kalli * Stuffed Vegetables
Pretty easy: I just par-boiled halved, scooped-out zucchinis and bell peppers with their tops chopped off and seeds removed until they softened by about 50%. Then I filled them with spanish rice I made from a package, some boiled, shredded turkey (seasoned with a little butter, salt, pepper and cayenne) and some sauteed grape tomatoes and onions. I baked the stuffed veggies in a casserole dish with about 1 inch of water below the vegetables for about 10-15 minutes to steam them and soften them up a little more.
Looks like a healhy and yummy lunch/dinner/snack, Kalli!