‘More pie please!’ That’s what I said after my second helping. Gulp. Then I got a grip. It would have been completely possible to eat this entire pie myself and had it not been for the inevitable guilt that would be sure to follow (not to mention what my husband would say…’what, you ate the whole pie!’), I probably would have. I adapted this from a Chatelaine rhubarb custard pie recipe and had planned to use peaches instead of pears, but found them an unappealing yucky brown upon slicing them open. Why can’t I find some good peaches? What really makes this pie is the crust. I know. I know. You’re thinking, ‘who cares about the crust?’. You do. And after you try Donna Hay’s vanilla pie pastry you will never use another.
4 cups fresh blackberries (washed and dried)
3 ripe bartlett pears (pealed and roughly chopped)
2 egg yolks
2 tbsp melted butter
1 cup sugar
2 tbsp four
*Donna Hay’s Vanilla Pie Pastry
1 2/3 cup flour
1/4 tsp baking powder
1 tbsp sugar
3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
1/3 cup ice water
1 tsp vanilla
Combine flour, sugar and baking powder in a bowl. Using a food processor (or your hands), cut in cold butter until crumbly. Combine cold water and vanilla and gradually add into the dough (continually mixing). Mix until the dough comes together and is smooth. Using plastic wrap, cover and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes before using. * I doubled this recipe.
Preheat oven to 425. Roll out half of pastry on a lightly floured surface and line bottom of a 9 inch pie plate. Do not prick. Set pastry shell aside. In a medium-size bowl, whisk egg yolks with butter. Stir sugar with flour. Then, stir into egg yolk mixture to form a paste. Stir in blackberries and pears until well mixed. Turn mixture into pie shell. Roll out remaining dough and cut into strips 1/2 inch wide. Weave strips over filling to form a lattice top. Check out this how-to video to see how it’s done! Bake at 425 on the bottom rack for 10 minutes, just until edges start to brown. Then, reduce oven temperature to 350 and continue baking for another 40 minutes. Let cool for at least an hour…I know it’s tempting to grab a spoon and dig right in, but try to have some self restraint. Enjoy!