Blueberry Lemon Thyme Pie in a Bourbon Crust

Before this week, I hadn’t made a pie in a really long time.  I had almost forgotten how fun it is to make a pie.

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There’s something really special about making a pie.  I think it has to do with all the steps.  It’s a process, but almost always, it’s worth it.

With this pie, it’s totally worth it. I can honestly say, I thoroughly enjoy making pies.  I love making the dough and using my fingers to break up the butter.  I love rolling out the dough to fit the pie pan.   I should also tell you that I’m a little bit in love with the crust.  I decided bourbon was a good idea, so I used bourbon instead of water.  Then I decided thyme goes great with blueberries and lemon. So why not?  I won’t lie, the thyme gives the pie a really earthy flavor.  I’m not sure it will be to everyone’s liking.  If you aren’t into earthiness, omit the thyme and you will have one rockin’ pie.

The only part of pie-making that I’m not crazy about is chopping fruit.  With this pie, this is a non-issue. pieingredients

This is pretty much the pie for those who don’t like to chop things.  There’s really zero chopping involved.  Just rinse your blueberries, grate your lemon and pluck some thyme off the stem, then throw it all together with some sugar and flour.  It all is pretty simple. blueberrylemonpie2

Of course with any pie, you can always get fancy.  Lattice tops are always fancy.  I tried to get even fancier by using a spoon to crimp the edge.  Oh and the little heart adds a nice touch, right?  All sorts of cute! blueberrylemonpie3

  I’m a fan.  If you’re in the mood for a fancy pants pie that is comforting and earthy (is earthy a bad thing?), this is the jam:

Blueberry Lemon Thyme Pie in a Bourbon Crust

For Crust:

350g all purpose flour
2 tbsp sugar
1/2 tsp salt
2 sticks butter, cold
1/4 cup bourbon

For Filling:

1.5lbs fresh blueberries (5 cups)
3/4-1 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/2 tsp salt zest and juice of 1 lemon
1 tbsp fresh thyme  

First make your crust.  Mix together dry ingredients.  Cut your butter into cubes, using your fingers work into your flour mixture until you get coarse crumbs.  Add bourbon and work into a ball.  Wrap in plastic and refrigerate 4 hours or overnight.  Resting is a critical part of pie dough  making.  If your pie dough is shrinking, it’s because it hasn’t rested enough. So let it chill in the fridge a few hours. Pour yourself a glass of bourbon while you wait.

When you’re ready to make your pie, make your filling.  In a bowl, combine all ingredients Roll out the crust, half for the bottom and half for the top.  Place one half in the bottom of the pan.  Fill with fruit filling.  Then make a lattice top (or just roll it out and cut a few slits in the top), crimp as desired.

 If you want some cool pie crimping ideas, check this out. Put your pie in the freezer while you preheat your oven to 350F.  Once heated, bake for about an hour or until the blueberries are bubbling all around. Allow to cool completely and serve. eatingblueberrypie

Blueberry pie always looks like a mess when served.  But that’s part of the fun of pies.  Unlike layer cakes, pie aren’t perfect.  They’re messy and chunky, but overall pretty great.

 

I’m really interested to try more herbs in pies.  I’m thinking maybe strawberry basil might be a good combo.

Any other ideas?  How do you feel about pies? Fan? Not so much?

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Pear-Onion Brie Bruschetta

Happy New Year!

With the start of 2012, I’m sure everyone’s thinking about resolutions.  Most people’s are probably to exercise more or travel somewhere exotic.  For me, it’s to cook more savory dishes.  So I’m starting 2012 with a bang! (I actually made these on January 1st!)

Ok I’ll be honest.  This is only sort of savory, but it’s also a little sweet.  Caramelized onions and pears.  Naturally sweet, but perfectly balanced with salty brie.

Baby steps.

I’ll get to fully savory soon enough.  After all, I have all year.

Pear-Onion Brie Bruschetta

1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp butter
1 large onion, diced
2-3 pears, diced
2-3 tsp fresh thyme
1 baguette
few ounces of Brie

Heat oil and butter together on medium.  Once oil and butter is hot, add onions and pears.  Cook until caramelized (about 30-40 minutes).  Basically you can put it in there, stir it around, leave it alone for 10 minutes, stir it, leave alone for 10 minutes, stir again, etc.

Once it’s a nice caramel color, stir in the thyme, cook for another minute and turn off the heat.  At this point you can either serve it or put it in a container to transport.  That’s really the beauty of this appetizer/snack.  You can take it anywhere.  It can be eaten hot or cold and it’s easy to assemble.

So for the assembly, cut a baguette into thin slices (about 1-2 centimeters thick? I’m bad with measurements, use your best judgement), spoon some of the onions and pears onto the bread, and top with a small slice of brie.

Serve and enjoy!  Just to note, I tried putting the brie under the pear-onion mixture but I found that it slides off more for some reason.  But if you want to put the brie under the pears and onions, go for it.

Like I said, this is perfect for any occasion.  I took it for a picnic.

You should try it too.  Feel free to make it a resolution, and by that I mean your resolution should be to eat more delicious things.