Berries and Cream Pie

This is a tasty pie. “An outstanding pie,” says my tester. “But this is no Blueberry Cheese Pie.” Um, no. Not so much.

This is what I'm talkin' 'bout!

For those in the back row, the cheese in my Perfect Blueberry Cream Pie is cream cheese. CREAM cheese. Not gouda, dude-uh. There’s no havarti at this pie party. No fella, that’s not mozzarella. It’s cream cheese. Cream cheese. Cream. Cream. Creammm….

That pie was damn good. I mean, I could stop baking pies right now and die a happy pie baker. I won’t. But I could. That is how good that pie is. If you don’t go make that pie right now (well, after reading my blog, duh!), you will not know the rainbow-sparkle, earth-shifting feeling of having that pie in your mouth. Oh, it is so, so good. Yes, yes it is.

I cannot stop baking pies. People love my pie. My Piary must continue. Pity the pie that follows the majestic pie-perfection of my Blueberry Cheese Pie. Seriously. I mean, Berries and Cream Pie is delicious. But it is no Perfect Blueberry Cheese Pie.

All right. I’m done with that. For now. It’s time to move on to the next pie.

I was inspired by Martha once again. I just simplified (a bit) her Summer Fruit Cream Pie recipe. The cream is a custard, so there is a lot of whisking. Count it as your workout for the day. I won’t tell. I only had blueberries and raspberries, so that’s what I used. I prefer nutmeg, as you know, but if you prefer cinnamon, go for it. I forgot to put the plastic wrap over it before chilling, but it came out fine. It didn’t have a creepy pudding skin, or anything nasty like that. It was a darn good pie. It’s just not the Perfect Blueberry Cheese Pie.

First, go ahead and make the graham or other cookie crumb crust. Use this basic recipe, or this one, from the Perfect Blueberry Cheese Pie.

 

Crumb Crust

1½-2 cups graham cracker crumbs (about 12-16 crackers)
2 tbs sugar (optional)
pinch salt
½ cup (yes, 1 stick) unsalted butter, melted

Mix all ingredients and pat into 9-inch pie plate. Bake for 8 minutes at 325°. Let cool on a wire rack before filling.

And now do all this other stuff. I didn’t have whole milk on hand, so I did a mix of 2 percent and half & half. It all worked out fine.

Berries and Cream Pie

1½ cups berries; blueberries, raspberries, and/or blackberries.
1 cup sugar
3 tbs + 2 tsp cornstarch
¼ tsp salt
2¾ cup of whole milk
4 egg yolks, slightly beaten in a medium bowl (save the whites for an omelet (meh) or meringue (yay!)
¼ tsp fresh, grated nutmeg
½ tsp fresh lemon juice, just to squirt on the berries
4 tbs butter, cut into quarters and softened
1 tsp vanilla

Whisk together the sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan. Over medium-high heat, whisk in milk. Stirring constantly (don’t stop!), bring to boil (look for big bubbles, about five minutes) and cook for two minutes at boiling point. Keep stirring!!

Remove from heat. Slowly pour into eggs, whisking until combined. Return to saucepan and return to boil, cooking over medium-high heat, stirring constantly for about 1-2 minutes. Look for those big bubbles, again.

Remove from heat, add nutmeg and vanilla. Stir in 1 tbs of butter at a time, whisking till butter melts. Let custard cool in saucepan on wire rack, about 10 minutes. (Again, Martha said to whisk occasionally, but I forgot and it all worked out fine.)

Mix berries with a sprinkling of granulated sugar, a squirt of lemon juice, and a little grated nutmeg. Stir until combined. Gently fold berries into custard and pour into crust. (This is where Martha says to put plastic wrap on top, but I didn’t. Whatever. Your choice.)

Chill for 4 hours or overnight.

Yeah, right. It was perfectly fine at 4 hours, but I guess if you are making it for a potluck or tailgate, you could make it the night before and bring your pie and your hooch and you’ll be the hit of the par-tay. I just like to eat my pie right away. The waiting is the hardest part.

Look at pretty pictures now, mkay?

 

Whisk dry ingredients together

 

Whisk in the milk

 

See? Whisking is a workout!

 

Slowly pour into the whisked egg yolks

 

It's beginning to look a lot like custard

 

Obligatory berry shot

 

That's a fine looking graham cracker crust

 

Gently fold in the berries

 

Pour into the crust

 

Just chill, man

 

Not the prettiest slice of pie, but it was darn tasty

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