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Greg's Huckleberry Pie

(recipe, Deborah Madison)

Introduction

This recipe comes from pastry chef Greg Patent, who took Deborah on a tour of the Missoula, Montana, farmers' market. You can also make the pie with blueberries or brambleberries of any kind (blackberries, marionberries, loganberries, and the like).

Ingredients

    Dough
    1. 2¼ cups all-purpose flour
    2. ½ tsp. sea salt
    3. ¾ cup (1½ sticks) plus 2 Tablespoons unsalted butter
    4. ½ tsp. vinegar
    5. 1 egg yolk
    6. Scant ½ cup ice water
    Filling
    1. 1 cup plus 1 Tablespoon granulated sugar
    2. ¼ cup light brown sugar, firmly packed
    3. 4 to 5 Tbsp. quick-cooking tapioca
    4. 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
    5. ½ tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
    6. 1¾ lb. (about 5 cups) huckleberries, washed and picked over for stems
    7. 1 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
    8. 2 Tbsp. unsalted butter, chilled and cut into small pieces

    Steps

    1. Make the dough: Place the flour in a food processor with the salt and pulse. Cut the butter into 1-inch chunks and add them to the flour. Pulse 4 to 6 times to break them up.
    2. Combine the vinegar and egg yolk in a measuring cup and add enough ice water to bring the volume up to ½ cup. (You may not need to use all of the liquid, unless your flour is very dry.) While pulsing, add the liquid in a steady stream until the flour looks crumbly and damp. Between 25 and 30 pulses should be enough. Don't let the dough form a ball. The crumbs should adhere when you gather them in your hand. If not, add a few more drops of ice water.
    3. Turn out the dough and divide it into 2 pieces, one slightly larger than the other. Wrap each piece in plastic wrap and press it into a disk. Refrigerate for 30 minutes to an hour before rolling.
    4. Make the filling: Combine 1 cup of the granulated sugar, the brown sugar, tapioca, cinnamon, and nutmeg in a large bowl. Break up any lumps with your fingertips and mix well. Fold in the huckleberries and lemon juice and let the mixture stand for 15 minutes.
    5. Preheat the oven to 450 degrees.
    6. Roll out the larger piece of dough first and drape it into your pie plate. Add the filling, mounding it slightly in the center. Dot the filling with butter and set aside.
    7. Roll out the second piece of dough into a 12-inch circle. Brush the edge of the lower crust lightly with water and place the top crust over the berries. Press the edges firmly to seal, and trim away the excess pastry to within ½ inch of the rim of the pan. Fold the pastry back on itself to form a standing rim and flute. Make 4 or 5 slits about 1½ inches long in the top crust with the tip of a small knife. Brush the top lightly with water and sprinkle on the remaining tablespoon of sugar.
    8. Place the pie on a baking sheet on the lower rack of the oven and bake for 15 minutes at 450 degrees. Transfer the baking sheet with the pie to the middle rack, reduce the temperature to 350 degrees, and bake until the juices are thickened and bubbly and the crust is a rich brown color, about 45 minutes more.
    9. Cool completely before cutting. Refrigerate any leftovers.