Oh, Say Can You See...this adorable patriotic galette? And by the way, this is the EASIEST pie you’ll ever make. There’s no crimping of edges, no docking and blind-baking, no complicated lattice-work. It’s the most impressive-looking pie, yet requires only the basics to make. And if you can use a cookie cutter, congratulations- you have the skill set to make this galette! I’m so proud of you.
You start by making the thickened fruit filling, which sounds complicated but is really easy. You take some sliced strawberries, adding in sugar and my new favorite pie-making friend, King Arthur Flour’s Pie Enhancer. Have you tried this? It’s a really fine powder that’s a great all-in-one thickener for pie fillings (and no, they don’t pay me to say that). I discovered it on my trip last week to their Vermont headquarters, and I am SO glad that I did. The Pie Enhancer is a mix of their Instant ClearJel (keeps filling thick and not runny, no matter if fruit is fresh of frozen), ascorbic acid (more on that in a minute), and superfine sugar (to prevent clumping). Now if you use this, be forewarned that this mixture is about half-sugar, so you
need to reduce the amount of sugar in your recipe if you use it.
The secret in this enhancer is in part, I believe, is the Ascorbic Acid. Please let me geek out for a moment, ok? Even though ascorbic acid sounds like something that you should need a permit to handle, it’s actually a naturally-occurring compound that is essentially Vitamin C in it’s basic chemical composition. It’s an antioxidant that is sometimes added to foods to do several important things. It slows down the oxidation process, allowing our fruit to remain brightly colored even when baked (similar to why you put lemon juice on a cut avocado to prevent it from turning brown when exposed to air). The low pH level of ascorbic acid can help prevent microbial growth, avoiding premature spoiling. And the last, and I think best, part is that since it’s an acid it has a very tart flavor, which in our case works very well since tart enhances sweet.
Now if you don’t use the pie-enhancer, you can easily substitute out 2 tbsp cornstarch for the strawberries and 1 tbsp for the blueberries and add a little more sugar to the recipe. If using frozen fruit, avoid defrosting it before taking it out for use, just let it sit with the flour for a few minutes per the instructions. Just beware that your fruit filling will likely be a little watery, since the water that was in the fruit leeches out and doesn’t firm up. If that’s the case just make sure you drain out some of the water when you put it in the pie. But all those fruit juices you’re draining out = flavor so I like to use the enhancer so all that fruity goodness stays where I want it- in my pie.
You’re going to do the same thing with the blueberries. In a separate smaller bowl, with one difference- you’re going to crush about half the blueberries before adding the pie enhancer, sugar and lemon. Reason being the juices inside the fruit are what need to be released in order to make the filling thick.
But if you crush all the berries you don’t have that whole-blueberry texture, it just becomes one big goopy mess. This way you have the best of both worlds- a study filling with delicious texture to boot.
So why not add the strawberries and the blueberries in the same bowl? Because the fruit juices will start to break down quicker since the strawberries are much more juicy since they’re cut. And the more you mix and squish when combining ingredients, the more the cell walls are going to break down and become mush. This way you can control each fruit and then combine later so you can see both the strawberries and the whole blueberries on top. Don’t care about how it looks? Then sure, combine them both. But your texture might not be the same. And texture is half the battle, especially when baking, so in my book it’s worth it to use one extra little bowl. But to each their own.
Then you put the fruit in the center of your pie circle and fold it up just like this. Takes about 30 seconds and in the end looks rustic and adorable. Add a couple of patriotic cutouts, a little brushing of egg wash and a sprinkle of Demerara sugar and pop it in the oven.
And the delicious aroma that wafts into your kitchen 20 minutes or so later is so good you’ll be lining up the next filling concoctions you want to try. You can try combinations of your favorite fruit- blueberry/nectarine, apple/cranberry, cherry/raspberry. The world is your filling, my friends!
That’s what great about the galette- it’s kind of like our country. It’s built on a firm foundation, holds a melting pot of different flavors, but all comes together to create a unique show-stopping display.
Be sure to post pictures of this or any other recipe you make from the blog! Be sure to tag your images with #aswedetooth for a chance to be featured on our Instagram page! Happy baking!
Patriotic Berry Galette
My Perfect Pie Crust Recipe (Enough for 2 round 6-inch pies)
For the blueberry filling:
½ pint blueberries
1 tbsp sugar
1 tbsp King Arthur Flour Pie Filling Enhancer
1 tsp fresh lemon juice
For the strawberry filling:
½ quart strawberries, hulled and sliced
¼ c sugar
2 tbsp King Arthur Flour Pie Filling Enhancer
1 ½ tsp fresh lemon juice
1 tsp milk
2 tbsp Demerara sugar
Misc. patriotic mini cookie cutters (I used small stars and a USA cookie cutter, both of mine were from Wilton but use whatever you like!)
Pre-heat your oven to 425 degrees, and line a cookie sheet with parchment paper/silicone mat. Set aside.
In a small bowl with the blueberries, use a small spoon or muddled to mash up about half the blueberries in the bowl, leaving half whole. Combine the sugar, pie filling enhancer, and lemon juice in a bowl, and gently stir to combine, making sure not to break the whole blueberries. Set aside.
In a larger bowl, place the strawberries, the sugar, pie filling enhancer, and lemon juice and gently stir to combine.
While the berries macerate, roll one sheet of your dough out into a 6-7 inch round circle. Set on your cookie sheet.
Cut out the other shapes for the top of the pie crust (Optional, but adds some pretty to the pie)and set it on the cookie sheet as well. Put in fridge for 2-3 minutes.
In a small bowl, whisk the egg with a splash of water until smooth and clump-free. Grab your pastry brush and the Demerara sugar
Pour the blueberries into the strawberry bowl and gently combine until evenly distributed.
Take out the crust, and pour the berry mixture into the center, pushing out until even with a 1 ½ inch border around the edge, and brush the egg mixture around the outside border.
Fold the edges of the crust up and over so that the edge of the crust is sitting on top of the berry mixture.
Top the pie with the decorative cutouts, if using, then brush them and the crust with the egg wash and top with the rest of the Demerara sugar.
Bake in the oven for about 25 minutes, or until the crust is golden brown.
Enjoy on Fourth of July, on a blanket with loved ones under a sky of fireworks! (Fireworks optional, but enjoying this pie is not.)