Friday 12 August 2011

Blueberry Pie

I just love pie, both sweet and savoury, but sweet most of all. Pie always reminds me of my Gramma. In summer there was all kinds of fruit from their orchard and berries from their vines. My two favourite fruit pies would have to be Gramma's fresh raspberry pie and the other saskatoon pie. Saskatoons are a lovely wild berry that looks similar to a blueberry. I guess they have a similar taste but there is a definite difference. I find them to be sweeter and definitely tastier. I remember going saskatoon picking with my Gramma when on holidays. It wasn't easy work although a lot easier than picking raspberries or blackberries. Plus the bonus is that you are in Canada and don't have to worry about poisonous Aussie spiders hiding in amongst the trees/berries, which I have had occur when picking blackberries. 

Another pie that my Gramma used to make was a Sour Cream Raisin pie and it is just to die for. There is one huge but when it comes to this pie. I have tried to make it myself and I discovered what the but is. It just doesn't taste the same without proper sour cream. By that I mean that my grandparents (and uncles) milked their own cows and separated their own milk producing wonderful natural untouched cream. I have to admit that there is nothing better than fresh milk and fresh cream. Gramma would allow the cream to sour naturally. Not so much that it was bad of course but just enough that you didn't want to dollop it on top of a bowl of berries. That is when you make the sour cream raisin pie. It is just not the same using the homogenised, pasteurised and cultured sour cream that you buy in stores. I would love to be able to buy real milk and cream. Alas I do not know anyone who milks their own cows (with the exception of my uncles, but they are in Canada not Australia), not that I really blame them, owning milk cows is hard work. Another problem is that it is illegal to sell so called "raw" milk for consumption. Ah, I guess that I will just have to make another trip to Canada so that I can make a sour cream raisin pie. 

Now that I have waxed lyrical about my favourite pies I am going to tell you that I made something completely different. Blueberries are as close as it gets to saskatoons here and since I had a yen for pie I decided that it would be a good idea to try making one. After a quick google search I came up with this delectable looking Blueberry pie recipe over on Simply Recipes. I couldn't wait for it to cool down so the filling did run a bit when I cut into it but it was worth it to eat this wonderful pie. I didn't make the pastry recipe linked to in that recipe. I instead made my Gramma's recipe like I do for almost all pastry items that I make. It is a wonderful recipe. My Gramma made it with lard. I make it either with shortening (if I have it) but more often that not just with butter. It is best made with lard though. 

Shortcrust Pastry


2 c (220 g) flour
1 tsp salt
2 tbsp caster sugar (for sweet pies only, which is my addition)
2/3 c (150 g) lard, shortening or butter
1 tbsp vinegar
1 small egg

Combine flour, salt and caster sugar. Cut in lard using a pastry cutter, or use a food processor. 
Place egg in a 1 cup measure and lightly beat, add vinegar and top up with water to 3/4 cup. Add to flour mixture and little at a time until you have a soft pastry (you probably won't need all the liquid). 


  1. Blueberry pie is my favorite. My grandmother used to make it on a cookie sheet and just fold the dough up over the edges :)

  2. Wow, what a superb looking pie! I haven't ever had blueberry pie, we always had apple pie when I was little, I don't think you could even get hold of blueberries when I was young, and if you could they were prohibitively expensive to make a pie with. You've made me crave pie now!!!

    Perhaps your saskatoons are like UK bilberries. Bilberries are the wild version of blueberries here, they grow on Scottish moors I think, but probably other places too, and are supposed to be a more intense flavour than blueberries, but similar.