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Thursday, April 26, 2012

Pie Time!

My life has been lacking in pie lately.  I’m pretty sure if I eat enough pie, I could solve all the problems of the world.  Or maybe world leaders need more pie.  Anyway, on with the post.

Our house in Washington has tons of wild huckleberry bushes in the yard.  Did you even know huckleberries were a real berry?  They are, and they are delicious, if a bit tart.  The wild ones are tiny, and it takes forever and a day to pick enough to do anything with…but it’s great entertainment for the little ones.

DSC_0039We were fortunate enough to have neighbors who gave us huckleberries they had picked (thanks, Mr. Tom!), so we didn’t have to rely on the foraging skills of preschoolers.  As you can see, he was willing to pick, but ate more than went in the bowl!

I made up this pie last year using huckleberries, based on a raspberry cream cheese pie that our favorite sandwich shop in Washington features.  If you’re in the neighborhood, 5th Avenue Sandwich Shop in Olympia is definitely worth a try!  Until then, here’s my huckleberry pie, changed back to use raspberries because there are no huckleberries (or neighbors to pick them!) here in Wisconsin.


Raspberry Cream Cheese Pie

1 pie shell, baked
Raspberry filling:
12 oz bag frozen raspberries, thawed but not drained
1/2 cup sugar
2 Tbsp cornstarch
2 tsp butter
Cream Cheese filling:
8 oz. cream cheese (light or regular will work), very soft
3/4 cup confectioners’ sugar
1 tsp almond extract (or vanilla, but I like almond better)
1 cup whipped cream (or you can use thawed Cool Whip)

1. To make filling:  Whisk together cornstarch and sugar (this keeps lumps out of your filling) in a medium saucepan.  Add raspberries with their juice and whisk over medium heat until thickened and bubbly.  Cook one minute after it bubbles (this sets the cornstarch and makes your filling nice and shiny).  Remove from heat, stir in butter, and let cool.

2. To make cream cheese layer:  Cream together cream cheese and confectioners’ sugar.  Stir in almond extract, then fold in whipped cream.   Spread in cooled crust.

3.  Chill at this point for about half an hour, then spread cooled raspberry filling on top.

4.  Chill until serving. Top with additional whipped cream if you’d like.  And who wouldn’t?

If you’re lucky enough to have them, you can make this with huckleberries by substituting 2 cups fresh or frozen berries and 1/2 cup water for the raspberries and juice.

This pie is light, not too sweet, and utterly delicious.  I hope you try it!

1 comment:

  1. Looks good enough to be served in a small town cafe in Kansas, where some of the best pies in the world are made!

    I bet you miss picking berries. Me and Anne's friend was working at Olympia National Park last spring/summer. She loved it there. After hearing her stories and adventures, it's on my list of places to visit. Soon! And she did mention huckleberries in her stories.

    Thanks for sharing, Megan. :)


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