Basque Red Berry Pie


I came across this recipe in an Israeli cookbook, about eight years ago. It was love at first sight. I happen to love fruit cakes of almost any kind, and the rustic, homey look of this cake was so attractive, that I immediately knew I had to make it. And I was not disappointed.

Fast forward a couple of years, I decided to bake it as a gluten free version, to sell at my gluten free bakery for Thanksgiving. Between the home baked look of the pie, the red berries (I added cranberries, too), and the fact that it was so fit for a Thanksgiving meal, this pie was a real hit among my customers. And you couldn’t even tell it was gluten free.

So, I thought it would be nice to share the original recipe with you all, so this year you can have this pie at your Christmas table.

3 ½ cups (500g) flour
1 ½  teaspoon baking powder
1 ½ cups (300g) sugar
2 ½ sticks (300g) cold butter
2 eggs
1 egg yolk

¼ cup (60cc) water
½ cup (100g) sugar
21oz (600g) frozen mixed berries (raspberries, blackberries, blueberries)
Zest from one lemon
1 egg yolk + 1 teaspoon water

In a food processor, combine flour, baking powder, sugar and cold butter and pulse. Add the eggs and pulse only until the dough starts forming.

Divide the dough into two pieces – one piece of about two thirds of the dough, and the other piece of one third. Wrap each piece of dough in plastic wrap and flatten it to a disc. Refrigerate for one hour.

In a sauté pan, combine ¼ cup water with ½ cup sugar. Melt the sugar and bring to a boil. Add the mixed berries and lemon zest and sauté for 3 minutes. Remove from the heat, chill and strain. (Keep the liquid to use as syrup in some drinks.)

Remove the dough from the fridge and bring to room temperature. Grease a 10” pie pan.

Preheat oven to 375F.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the larger disc of dough to about 14” in diameter and place it in the pie pan. Do not trim the edges. Pour the filling on the dough and spread it evenly.

Roll out the smaller dough to a 12” circle and place on top of the berries. Pinch together the ends of the two doughs. Make a hole in the center of the pie to allow steam to come out.

Brush the top of the pie with egg wash made of 1 egg yolk and 1 teaspoon water. Bake for about 35 minutes, until the dough has browned.

Serve warm or at room temperature with a dollop of sour cream.

Happy Thanksgiving!!

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