What better way to celebrate the bravery of our founding fathers than with sweet, juicy berries and tender, flaky crusts? Ther ISN’T a better way! I’ve had patriotic pies on the brain for quite some time. Yes, it was first inspired by Martha’s Fourth of July Blueberry Pie in her Baking Handbook, but I took it just a bit further by adding a sister pie — the striped cherry pie to complement the starry blueberry confection. I think I’m getting quite good at making pies now…
My last attempt at pâte brisée yielded a stiff mass of unrollable dough, likely due to the fact that I didn’t add enough water. This time, I was at home in the glorious land of Granville, Ohio, surrounded by my mom’s kitchen tools and fully stocked pantry. I was sure to add all the water to guarantee a perfect dough. I was a bit worried when the dough appeared too sticky and thought, damn! I cannot make dough. But you know what they say, those who can’t dough…wait that’s not it.
I’m well aware of the cliché factor surrounding the typical Fourth of July berry desserts. There’s the usual blueberries and strawberries arranged on some sort of whipped cream canvas to create an abstract American flag. In the immortal words of Tracy Jordan, “BORED.” That’s been done. You could also go the parfait route, alternating those same blueberries and strawberries with dull layers of Cool Whip and pop those babies out during the parade. But I think people would be more interested in the Shriners in their goofy hats and tiny cars scooting down the road than eating the same old patriotic fare.
So pie it is! It’s traditional, yet unexpected. Granted, people usually lean towards the cooler desserts, because it is July after all. But a slice of fruit pie with a scoop of vanilla ice cream will have you feeling refreshed and satisfied in no time. I very much appreciate the simplicity and elegance of pies. It’s the same show every time, but with different guest stars. The dough has the same basic counterparts, but can be rolled out into any size or shape you can dream up. The abundant filling options can be overwhelming — in a good way of course. You can’t go wrong! Sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, miscellaneous fruit or berry and voilà. Pie. It is quite convenient that many of the best pie berries grow naturally in such patriotic colors. It’s like destiny. Sweet, American destiny.