Pie is good. Tiny pies are even better. Several weeks ago I found three little pie tins at a local thrift shop. They looked like they might have come out of a child's baking set- the kind I used to make mud pies in when I was little. They sat on my kitchen counter just waiting for inspiration. I could just imagine the little pies that could be made in them. Pies you could hold in your hand. Pies you could share with a friend.
And then I saw them- in the checkout line at the grocery store, no less. On the cover of Martha Stewart Living magazine. Little patriotic pies. It didn't hurt that blueberries were on special and they were absolutely gorgeous, blue and plump.
It also didn't hurt that my grandson was visiting and he loves to help in the kitchen. He had made several requests over the last few days to use those little tins on the counter. ("Mimi- Could we make the tiny pies now?" ) It's not like my arm needed twisting or anything.
We ended up with these three little pies, all dressed up for Independence Day. (Not that these will ever see the 4th of July. They won't even see tomorrow!) Don't they look like they should be cooling on a windowsill somewhere? They were quite easy to put together, especially since I used the pie crust in a box. (Sorry Johnny.) And if you don't have three little pie pans, this lovely blueberry pie filling would be just as delicious in one big one. You'll just need a fork to eat it.
This post has been entered in Faith and Nutmeg Nanny's All Through the Year Cheer 4th of July event!
adapted from this recipe at pickyourown.org
For 3 tiny pies (5 inch diameter) you'll need:
2-3 cups fresh blueberries
1/3 cup sugar
1 1/2 Tablespoons lemon juice
1 Tablespoons water, grape juice, or other berry juice (I used some blackberry juice that I'd just prepared for jam.)
3 Tablespoons cornstarch
Pie Crust (enough for double crust pie), unbaked
For one 9-inch pie, double all of the filling ingredients except for blueberries. Use about 4 cups of blueberries.
- Preheat oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit
- Line pie tin(s) with dough, trimming off excess from edges. Set aside.
- Wash berries, discarding stems and mushy berries. Put in colander (lined with a towel) to drain.
- Combine sugar and cornstarch. Stir in lemon juice and water or juice.
- Arrange drained blueberries into prepared (unbaked) pie crust(s).
- Pour sugar/liquid mixture evenly over the blueberries in the pie(s).
- Cut remaining dough with a pastry cutter (or a Play-Doh Swiss Army knife if you can't find your pastry cutter) and a star shaped cookie cutter. Place dough strips and stars on top of blueberries in the pie shell(s). Press strips down onto the edges of the pie crust(s).
- Brush exposed dough with a mixture of 1 egg yolk beaten with 1 Tablespoon milk. Make sure the mixture is well combined and that you don't put it on too thickly. Just a thin coating is best. Sprinkle with sugar (white or colored) if desired.
- Bake for about 1 hour for one 9 inch pie, or about 40 minutes for three 5 inch pies. Before baking time is completely up, check to make sure pies are not browning too quickly. If they are getting brown too quickly, tent with aluminum foil.
- Remove from oven when filling is bubbly and no longer cloudy. The crust should be lightly browned. Cool completely before slicing, if you can wait that long. Enjoy!