Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Blueberry Blackberry Pie

We have had a 2 lb. container of blueberries for several days now because I was planning on making a blueberry pie. That is, until my dad ate some (a lot) of the blueberries.

The blueberry pie recipe I was going to use called for all of those blueberries and I didn't want to search for another recipe, so I was happy when I remembered this blueberry blackberry pie recipe I saw a while ago.

We already had the perfect amount of blackberries on hand and slightly more than enough blueberries.

I was also pleased with how the graham cracker crumbs that the recipe called for to coat the bottom layer of the crust kept the bottom crust from becoming too soggy.

After the pie came out of the oven I was actually so happy that I had not made that blueberry pie because the combination of the blueberries and blackberries really complimented each other and tasted wonderful together. The only problems I had with this pie was the amount of berry filling that seeped out of the pie (which only affected the look, not the taste) and the fact that I slightly undercooked the pie. It was still really delicious, but it needed just a little more time for the crust to become flaky. I was just too paranoid that it would burn if it stayed in the oven any longer.

Funny how things work out sometimes, I guess.

2 round 9-inch pie crusts, chilled
2 pints fresh blueberries
1 pint fresh blackberries
1 cup granulated sugar, plus more for dusting the top crust
1/2 cup all-purpose flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
zest of 1/2 a lemon
juice from 1/2 a lemon
1/4 cup graham cracker crumbs
1 large egg beaten with a splash of water for the egg wash

Place the blueberries and blackberries in a large bowl. Gently stir in the sugar, flour, salt, zest and juice. Let sit for 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, remove the 2 chilled pie crusts from the fridge and roll each out on a floured surface. Place one of the pie crusts in a pie plate and trim the edges until there is only 1/2-inch of dough overhang.
Sprinkle the graham cracker crumbs on the bottom of the pie shell. Scoop the fruit mixture over the graham cracker crumbs and spread evenly with the back of a spatula. Moisten the edges of the pie overhang with the egg wash.
Drape the other rolled out pie dough over the berry mixture. Trim the edges until there is only 1/2-inch of dough overhang. Crimp the edges with your fingers to create a seal. Cut four vent holes in the top of the pie crust.
Place pie in the fridge while the oven preheats.
Preheat oven to 425˚F. Place a cookie sheet on the shelf below the pie to catch any pie spills.
Place a pie crust shield on the edges of your pie and bake pie at 425˚F for 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 375˚F and bake for another 30 minutes or until crust is golden brown and the filling is bubbling.
Allow pie to cool at least 30 minutes on a rack before serving.
Source: Joy the Baker

Sunday, May 27, 2012

Kale Walnut Pesto Pasta

I have only ever made basil pesto with pine nuts in the past, so I was a little skeptical about how this kale pesto with walnuts would turn out. I was so happy with the end result, though, and love this pesto variation!

It was also very simple to make, which is always nice. You first need about 2 cups of packed, coarsely chopped kale.

Add it to a pot of salted, boiling water and cook for about 5 minutes.

Toast your walnuts, but be careful not to burn them (like I almost did). 

Combine the walnuts and kale with garlic, Parmesan, and olive oil in a food processor to make the pesto.

Resulting in the perfect amount for 12 ounces of pasta (or for anything else you would like).

I used this kind of pasta...

And serve it with roasted green beans! 

2 cups tightly packed kale with stems discarded and leaves coarsely chopped
12 ounces pasta
1/2 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
1 clove garlic
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese
juice of 1/2 lemon
salt and pepper, to taste
1/4 cup olive oil

Bring a large pot of salted water to a boil. Add the coarsely chopped kale and cook until tender for about 4-5 minutes. Transfer the kale with a slotted spoon to a colander and rinse with cold water. Add the pasta to the pot and cook in the kale water until al dente. Once done, drain the pasta, rinse with cold water and return to the pot.
Meanwhile, squeeze the kale to remove excess water. Place the kale, walnuts, garlic, and Parmesan in a food processor until almost smooth. Season with salt and pepper and add the lemon juice. While the food processor is running, slowly add the olive oil.
Add the pesto to the pasta and sprinkle with more Parmesan if desired.
Source: Shutterbean

Friday, May 25, 2012

Strawberry Rhubarb Crisp

I wanted to make this crisp about a month ago, but could not find rhubarb anywhere. So when I finally found rhubarb about two weeks ago I remembered this crisp and ended up making it later that night.

I had never cooked or baked with rhubarb before,  so I was surprised that you first had to peel it. I loved how the rhubarb ended up tasting with the strawberries and crisp topping, especially now that it is summer and the fruit tastes wonderful.

Also, this recipe calls for a 9 x 9 baking dish but I just used an 8 x 8 because that is the only square pan we have and it turned out perfect!

Crisp Topping:
1 cup toasted slivered almonds
1 cup all-purpose flour
3/4 cup packed light brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup oats

Strawberry and Rhubarb Filling:
6 stalks rhubarb
1 1/2 pints strawberries
6 tablespoons granulated sugar
2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Preheat oven to 350˚F.
To make the crisp topping, combine the flour, brown sugar, salt, oats, and almonds in a medium bowl. Add the softened butter with your hands until the mixture is crumbly.
To make the filling, peel off the rhubarb's outer skin and cut off the ends. Cut stalks into one-inch pieces and place in a medium bowl. Hull the berries, cut in half, and add to the bowl with the rhubarb. Add the sugar and flour until just combined.
Place the filling in a 9 x 9 (or 8 x 8) baking dish and sprinkle the crisp topping over the fruit.
Bake 1 hour, or until bubbling, brown, and crisp.
Best when served about half an hour after baking with ice cream!
Source: 17 and Baking

Friday, May 11, 2012

Kale with Lime, Pine Nuts and Currants

It's almost time for summer, which is great news for the delicious food that comes with the season. We have been buying lots of produce (kale and strawberries in particular) from a place called Fresh Harvest. They have the best strawberries and I'm not sure what I'm going to do when they go out of season again!

I used Russian kale in this recipe, but you can use whatever type of kale you prefer. All types are delicious!

This salad tastes great by itself, and even better with salmon. There is a lot of kale in here, and you need to have something to balance it out.

I originally wanted to make this with lemon, but we only had limes on hand. I'm not a huge fan of lemon anyway, so I'm pretty sure I liked this lime version even better than I would have liked the intended lemon version anyway. Also, limes aren't quite as popular as lemons, so they give this salad a unique (and very nice) twist.

1 large bunch kale
juice of 2 limes
1/4 olive oil
salt, to taste
1/4-1/2 cup toasted pine nuts
1/2 cup currants
1/2 cup finely grated Parmesan cheese

Remove the large, central stems of the kale and roughly chop the leaves before placing in a food processor. Pulse the kale until the kale is processed into very small pieces. Then, add the lime juice, olive oil, salt, pine nuts, currants and Parmesan (adjusting amounts to suite your taste buds). Stir to combine.
Enjoy as is or with seasoned salmon!
Inspired by Tavern


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