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Pie Baking with Domenica Marchetti: Berry & Peach Pie

This post has been months in the works! Here's what happened: I was watching an episode of Top Chef when contestants had to make pies and tweeting at the same time. Many of my fellow twitter-ers were flabbergasted that some of the Top Chef contestants have never made pies in their lives. I twitted (tweeted?) back saying that although I'm not a Top Chef contestant, I don't remember the last time I made pie and could use a lesson. That's when Domenica Marchetti tweeted back and one thing led to the next, and last Sunday I ended up in Domenica's lovely home for a great barter deal: she would teach me how to make pies and I would share with her my knowledge about photography!

You see, Domenica is a cookbook author, freelance writer and contributor to Washington Post. I knew I was in good hands. She was also super friendly, patient and fun. I'm afraid I might have gotten a better deal out of this barter agreement ;)

But back to the issue of pies.

We decided to follow a recipe adapted from Betty Crocker for one of the pies, and make another with a recipe adapted from Jacques Pepin. One crust was made in the food processor, and another I made by hand.

This post will cover the Betty Crocker recipe I made in the food processor. Stay tuned for an apple pie with dough made by hand!

2 cups unbleached all-purpose flour
1 teaspoon salt
2/3 cup plus 2 tablespoons unsalted butter
4 to 5 tablespoons ice-cold water

1. Cut the butter into small cubes.

2. Put the flour and salt into a bowl of a food processor and pulse to combine.
3. Distribute the butter around the work bowl and pulse until the mixture is crumbly.

4. While the motor is running, drizzle the water through the feed tube and process just until the mixture begins to come together.

5. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface and pat into a disk. Domenica said she always uses wax paper for wrapping the dough because that's what her mom does. Wrap the dough in wax paper and let it sit in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

For this pie we decided to use peaches (3) and frozen berries: blueberries, raspberries and blackberries (about 1 cup each).

I know this photo below looks horrid, but just use your imagination: the frozen berries were gorgeous. They reminded me of Christmas ornaments.

Unfortunately, we did not have an hour, and so when we took the dough out of the refrigerator, it was still a bit too soft. Still, we managed to roll it out and fit it into a pie dish and crimp it.

We then combined peaches and berries with 1/4 cup flour, 3/4 cup sugar, 1 teaspoon cinnamon and 1 teaspoon freshly ground nutmeg.

Domenica taught me how to make lattice to top the pie, and I think I did pretty well for my first time.

Are you ready for some pie!?

The entire house smelled like butter, sugar and fruit. It was magical.

I had to take my pie on the Metro and felt bad for other riders who stared lovingly at the pie but could not have it! (Evil laugh!)

Of course the best way to serve a berry/peach pie is with fresh vanilla ice cream.

Although the filling was runny, the flavor more than made up for it! The crust was flaky and buttery.

Big THANK YOU to Domenica for a great afternoon. Please check in next week to see a beautiful apple pie we made.

What's YOUR favorite pie filling?


Kori said...

Your pie is beautiful! I'm planning to make a lattice cherry pie for my grandpa (his fave) next week...baking is so much fun :)

Delicious Dishings said...

Your pie looks gorgeous! I actually prefer runny filling. :) I haven't made a lattice top yet and plan to work on that soon... hopefully this fall!

blackbookkitchendiaries said...

i love this:) your lattice is so favorite pie filling is apple!

Anonymous said...

What a stunning job! Very impressive indeed! I have to say, I've never made a pie.
Hope you have a wonderful weekend.
*kisses* HH

Anna C said...

Great pictorial tutorial. Delicious looking pie with the pretty lattice work.


Jenna said...

That looks beautiful! I'm very impressed with the lattice - lovely work. And I love pies with peaches and berries - it's such a nice flavor combination. Can't wait to see the apple one you made too.

Sandy Smith said...

This is a beautiful pie. Someone suggested to me to use tapioca rather than flour to absorb the fruit juices. I have done this with much success - my fruit pies don't run as much when they are cut. One drawback; I can see the little puffed up tapioca balls in the filling when I eat the pie - but no one else notices.

The Duo Dishes said...

Now you see why we love making pies. The crust is the best part. Looking forward to the next one.

Simones Kitchen said...

Ah, the magic of twitter, right.. ? :) That sounds like a great experience indeed Olga. I am right now following a patisserie course and pies are for next lesson so I can't wait to make one as lovely (hopefully) as yours! Looks delicious and I can so understand those poor metro riders!!

Anonymous said...

Who wants pie?

*raising hand*

It looks delicious! I'm an apple girl with peach or strawberry (in season) as y back-ups.

Bianca @ Confessions of a Chocoholic said...

I've never made pie myself but I'd love to learn someday! Your pie looks delicious. My favorite pie filling is banana cream ;)

Irina said...

Like you, I'm fairly new to pie-baking. I recently got a lesson from a friend and yesterday I took a class at PCC Natural Markets here in Seattle called "Easy as Pie," taught by local pie maker Barbara Schwartz. I don't know if I have a favorite filling yet, but I know what the filling will be in my next pie - peaches and blackberries! I have both in the freezer right now.

Kulsum@JourneyKitchen said...

This looks amazing. My fav pie filling? hmm too many I love all berries pie and definitely peach is up there too. Sigh and with Vanilla ice cream - the idea for my perfect day!

Kenny J Almodovar said...

I've never made a pie but I have seen on cooking shows some people dust the fruit with corn starch.

Frankly, I think it looks perfect as is and you are lucky I was not on that metro cart.

Cherine said...

Gorgeous pie! Looks sooo good!

DGrub said...

Tastespotting.... Congrats!

Serene said...

That's gorgeous! I'm a huge pie fan, myself.

Mover Packer said...

You see, Domenica is a cookbook author, freelance writer and contributor to Washington Post. I knew I was in good hands. She was also super friendly, patient and fun. I'm afraid I might have gotten a better deal out of this barter agreement.