Fresh Raspberry Pie
This pie, excerpted from the book Sweetie Pies, can be made as one large double-crusted pie, or as individual tartlets with pastry cutouts placed on top, as shown. Roll out the extra pie dough, then cut out small shapes (diamonds, hearts, stars) with a cookie cutter or knife. Bake the cutouts on a cookie sheet until golden brown, then arrange them on top of the pie filling after the pie is baked.
For the crust:
2-1/4 cups all-purpose flour.
2 tsp. granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. table salt
1 cup chilled vegetable shortening
5 to 6 Tbs. ice-cold heavy cream or evaporated milk, more or less as needed.
For the filling:
5 cups fresh raspberries, rinsed and drained
6 Tbs. all-purpose flour
1/2 cup sugar, or more, depending on the sweetness of the berries
1 Tbs. grated lemon rind
1 large egg white, lightly beaten
1/8 tsp. ground cinnamon
1-1/2 Tbs. unsalted butter
Milk for brushing (optional)
Sugar for sprinkling (optional)
Make the dough:
Sift the flour, sugar, and salt together in a medium-size to large bowl. Using a pastry blender, a big serving fork, or the tips of your fingers, cut in or pinch or squeeze the shortening until the mixture resembles a bowl of sweet peas. Tossing the mixture quickly and lightly with a fork, sprinkle in the cream or milk 1 tablespoon at a time. (It’s better to err on the side of not having enough liquid than to have too much; you don’t want a soupy crust.) Continue tossing until the dough holds together when lightly pressed.
With lightly floured hands, loosely gather up the dough into a flat ball, place it in a bowl, and cover with plastic wrap. Refrigerate until you are ready to roll out the crust. I try to chill at least 30 minutes but not too much longer than overnight.
Roll out the dough and fill the pie:
Preheat the oven to 425°F.
Gather the dough into two balls, one slightly larger than the other. Refrigerate the smaller ball. On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the larger ball of dough into a 12-inch circle about 1/8 inch thick. Place a 9-inch pie plate upside down on top of the rolled-out dough. Using a small knife, cut around the plate, leaving a 1-inch border of dough around the plate. Remove the plate. Fold one side of the crust over in half. Fold the crust into quarters. Pick up the crust so that the center point is positioned in the center of the plate. Unfold the dough and press it firmly into the pie plate.
In a large bowl, combine the raspberries, flour, sugar, and lemon rind and gently toss to combine.
Using a pastry brush, brush the inside of the bottom crust with the egg whites, then spoon in the filling. Sprinkle the top of the filling with cinnamon, then dot it with the butter.
Remove the dough for the top crust from the refrigerator and roll it out into an 11-inch circle the same way you rolled out the bottom crust. Lay the top crust over the filling. To dress up the pie, press together the top and bottom edges of the crust all around the pie, then fold down the edge like a shirt collar. Using kitchen shears or a sharp knife, cut 1/4-inch-long slits all the way around, about 1/2-inch apart. Raise up every other tab to a 90-degree angle, so there’s a flag up, flag down, flag up, flag down design running around the rim. Cut slits in the crust to allow the steam to escape. If you like, you can brush the top with milk and sprinkle with a scant amount of sugar.
Bake the pie:
Place the pie in the oven on a cookie sheet. Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees and bake until the crust is golden, another 35 to 40 minutes. Cover the edge of the crust with a 2- to 3-inch-wide strip of aluminum foil if it starts to brown excessively. Let cool to room temperature on a wire rack.