Often I find my winter-self thanking my summer-self - I thank myself for the sewing and the watering and the weeding. For the foraging and the harvesting and, most of all, for the preserving. The moment I open a fresh can of cinnamon plumcot preserves, I am instantly taken back to that warm summer day when I plucked a ripe plumcot from that beautifully gnarled tree and took a big juicy bite. And when I pop a tiny frozen wild blueberry into my mouth, I remember swimming all day at the Pisgah and picking wild blueberries and huckleberries near the waterside. Suddenly, summertime seams not-so-distant, even though I’m covered in 2 feet of snow and ice.
What You'll Need
For the Crust:
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
3/4 cup unsalted butter, cold and cut into cubes
1/2 cup ice water
For the Filling:
1 cup cinnamon plumcot preserves, strained (or fresh plums or pluots, peeled and diced mixed with 1 tsp of cinnamon)
1 cup wild blueberries, fresh or thawed from frozen
juice of half lemon (omit if you are using plumcot preserves)
¼ cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons unbleached all purpose flour
1 egg for the wash
⅛ cup raw sugar
- To make the crust, combine the flour and salt in a large bowl or in the bowl of a food processor. Pulse or stir a few times to ensure the salt and flour are combined. Next, scatter the butter pieces over the flour. If you’re using a food processor, pulse until the mixture resembles cornmeal. If you are doing this the old fashioned way, use two knives or a pastry cutter and “cut-in” the butter until the mixture resembles cornmeal. Next, pour the ice water over the flour mixture and toss with a fork until the dough comes together in one ball. Divide the dough in half, place in a tupperware container and refrigerate for at least one hour or up to overnight.
- While the dough is resting, let’s make the filling. Combine the plumcots and blueberries and lemon juice (if you are using fresh plumcots, otherwise omit the lemon juice) in a large bowl and toss to combine. Sprinkle the brown sugar and flour on top and toss to coat the fruit. Set aside until you are ready to assemble your pies.
- Next, in a small bowl, beat the egg with a fork until the yolk and white are thoroughly combined.
- Preheat the oven to 350 degrees and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper.
- Now it’s time to assemble the pies. Remove the dough from the refrigerator and roll it out until it is about ¼” thick. Using a biscuit cutter, cookie cutter, or even the rim of a cup, press firmly into the dough and lift up the resulting shape. Be sure to make your cut-outs as close as possible. You only want to re-roll the dough one more time. If you roll out the dough more than twice, it will get gummy and the texture of your crust will suffer.
- To assemble the pies, place one shape in front of you. Dollop about a tablespoon of the filling on the cut-out. Place another cut-out on top of the filling and using the tines of a fork, gently fresh around the edges to seal the pie and pierce the top of the pie with the fork. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg wash over top and sprinkle with raw sugar.
- Place the pie on the prepared cookie sheet and repeat until you have used all your dough, or filling (whichever runs out first).
- Bake the pies for 30 minutes until golden brown on top. Let cool for 10 minutes and serve with French Vanilla or Bourbon Butterscotch Ice Cream.
Yield: sixteen 3” pies