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Summer Berry Pie – Vegan Style

Submitted by Hannah Klink.
Hannah is the daughter of eDFW editor, Karen McCullough,
and lives in Seattle, Washington. She was born in Dallas,
Texas, however, so her Texas roots are strong.

Coconut Oil Pie Crust

This makes enough for bottom and top crust. If you do not wish to have a top crust, use half of everything listed. Also, this piecrust can be made vegan, which is how I usually make it, by using Earth Balance for butter. Upon running out of E.B. last time, I improvised with ½ real butter, and the pie came out amazing. Use whatever suits your dietary needs and desires.

1½ cups unbleached white flour
1 cup whole wheat pastry flour
1 teaspoon baking powder
4 tablespoons cane sugar
¾ teaspoon salt
½ cup coconut oil (measured in solidified form)
4 tablespoons Earth Balance or butter (depending on whether you’re making this vegan)
2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar
3-5 tablespoons ice water

Toss dry ingredients together in a medium bowl. Add in the solidified coconut oil and butter of choice. Work into the flour mixture with the fingers until oil and butter begin to break into smaller pieces. Break up any clumps larger than a pea.

Add vinegar to the ice water. Drizzle the water slowly into the dough just enough so that the dough holds together and can be pinched. Don’t add more water than necessary.

Separate the dough into two equal amounts (if making both top and bottom crusts). Slightly flatten the dough and wrap in plastic wrap. Place the two sections in the freezer for about 15 minutes.

Pie Filling

You can use whatever fruit is in season. I’ve used a berry medley in this particular recipe. Raspberries, blueberries and blackberries have been picked fresh in the Pacific Northwest last season and frozen for these months when they’re not quite ready to pick. I know berry-picking season is coming up in Texas (or so my Mom tells me), so adapt it to your region.

Approximately 4 cups berries or fruit
¾ cup sugar
1 cup water
1 tablespoon starch
3½ teaspoons lemon juice

You can use this as a rough guide to the appropriate amounts. I personally add more berries to the mix because I like the pie to be really full. I guesstimate with a lot of my measurements, so this is a close resemblance but I suggest you do what looks right for you.

Mix ¼ cup of berries with 1 tablespoon corn starch with ¾ cup sugar in a medium to large pot on a medium setting. Add 1 cup water and heat until the mixture thickens and bubbles. Continually stir. If you like your filling thicker, add more cornstarch.

Add 3½ teaspoons lemon juice to the pot. Continue to stir until the mixture becomes thick and gelatinous. Fold the berries in and reduce heat.

Once heated throughout, remove from heat and you have your pie filling.

Combining the Steps

Flatten out each section of pie dough onto a floured surface with either a rolling pin or your hands. Press the first flattened section into the base of a round, glass pie pan. It will look rustic and that’s okay! The clumps will make it appear uneven, but will melt and spread out as the pie gets heated.

Take the second half of rolled out dough and cut into about ¾ inch strips.

Once you’ve filled the pie pan with filling, weave the top layer of crust strips over the filling. Press the edges of the bottom and top crust together around the edge. That’s the general idea. Again, use this as a guide and add your own touches. Your pie will come out wonderful!

Bake at 350 degrees for about 1 hour. When the filling starts to bubble and the crust gets a light brown color, it’s done!

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