Apple Blackberry Crumble Pie, Revisited
I wonder if this will happen every year. I wonder if, when the first rainy fall day comes, I’ll always be reminded of Ireland, walking around Galway, head bent against the drizzle, fighting the wind from stealing my umbrella. It happened last year, and I immediately wanted to curl up with a steaming, honey-laced cup of Earl Grey and a slice of pie. Apple Blackberry Crumble Pie, to be precise. My favorite.
I’ve told the story of this pie several times, even shared a recipe for it, but since revisiting Ireland this summer and rediscovering this what-has-become legendary pie, I’ve been hankering to recreate it it once again, to perfect the recipe. So when the rain spattered against the windows this morning, I was glad I’d already harvested loads of blackberries, that I’d had the foresight to buy a few Granny Smiths at the grocery store last week, and that I always always make sure to have butter, sugar and flour on hand. It’s the baker’s security measure.
Even when you’re prepared for emergency pie making, there are moments of agony during the endeavor. Mostly it’s the waiting. Waiting for the pie dough to chill, waiting for the oven to preheat, the pie to bake, the pie to cool. It’s very trying on your patience. But there is no greater reward. Especially when you’ve baked something that transports you with the first bite, back to a time and place where you first tasted it.
Especially when you manage to recreate it so incredibly close to the original. On this, my second attempt at making this pie, I think I got it spot on. My memory refreshed from my visit to Ireland in July, I knew what I needed to change. The apples and berries should be all mixed together, not in separate layers, the apples cut in smaller pieces, the pie baked in a deep dish pan, topped with a delicate crumb topping. Oh yes, this is the real deal. Can you even tell which is which?
Apple Blackberry Crumble Pie
© Copyright 2011 Carly Sullivan, Tart to Heart
- 1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
- 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 1/2 tsp granulated sugar
- 1/2 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- 2 tsp cider vinegar
- 1/4 cup ice water
- 2 large Granny Smith apples, peeled, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
- 2 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 2 Tbsp lemon juice
- 1 1/2 Tbsp cornstarch
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/2 cup whole-wheat pastry flour
- 1/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/4 cup sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1/8 tsp cinnamon
- 1/4 cup unsalted butter, cold and cubed
- Prepare the pie crust by combining the flours, sugar and salt in the bowl of your food processor. Pulse several times. Add the cold pieces of butter and pulse a few more times until the butter is in pea-sized pieces. Add the vinegar and half the ice water. Pulse a few times and check the consistency. If it’s still too dry to hold together, add the rest of the water until the dough comes together. It should still look crumbly but easily hold together when squeezed in your hand. Form the dough into a disc and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate 1 hour.
- When the dough has chilled, remove from the fridge and let sit for 10 minutes. Lightly flour a work surface and roll out the dough into a circle about 11 inches wide and less than 1/4-inch thick. Carefully lift the dough and place it in your pie tin. I used my deep dish quiche pan for this, which is 9 1/2 inches wide and 2 inches tall, but you can use a standard deep dish pie pan for this as well. Gently press into the tin and fold the edges over, trimming and crimping the excess how you like. Place in the fridge to chill.
- Meanwhile, prepare the crumb topping. Combine the flours, sugar, salt and cinnamon in the food processor and pulse a few times to combine. Add the pieces of butter and blend until fine crumbs form. Place in the fridge to chill.
- Preheat the oven to 375°F and place a pizza stone or sheet tray on the middle rack to preheat as well.
- To make the filling, combine all the ingredients and toss gently with a large spoon to combine. Let sit while the oven preheats. Once the oven is hot, remove the crust and crumbs from the refrigerator. Pour the fruit into the crust and spread into an even layer. Sprinkle the crumb mixture over the entire surface of the filling.
- Place the pie on the preheated pizza stone (put a sheet tray under the pie as well to catch drippings) or the preheated sheet tray and bake about 1 hour, rotating the pan halfway through cooking time, until the crust and crumble are golden brown and the juices are bubbling around the edges (mine took about 1 hour 15 minutes). Remove from the oven and let cool at least 1 hour (I know, it’s torture).
- Serve with a healthy dollop of freshly whipped cream or ice cream, close your eyes and dream of Ireland. Enjoy!