Sigh. Is there anything sweeter than a fruit pie?
Flaky, crimped pastry. Bubbly, baked fruit filling. Memories and comfort.
I love baking pies because I find them very relaxing. They break the norm for me from plated desserts or complex pastries because they don’t need accompaniments and garnishes, or multiple steps; they are wonderful as is. Pastry and fruit. A simple slice, and that’s all.
In my opinion, an honest pie should have a homemade look to it, so perfection is not important. Honest pies aren’t production pies. They are hand-crafted. Someone lovingly picked through and cut the fruit. That same person pinched the dough between his or her forefinger and thumb to create a fluted crust. An honest pie is also a very proud pie that forever holds memories every time you taste it.
Darling, sweet pies.
When I stumbled across this recipe, I was intrigued. A double decker cobbler pie kind of thing? It’s like a pie but baked in a square pan, with an extra layer of crust running through the middle.
So that’s a bottom crust, blackberry filling, middle crust, blackberry filling, and then a lattice top crust.
The following week is being ushered in by a cold front, so you wont have to worry about heating up the kitchen too much. Thank goodness we are finally getting some rain!
How to make this high altitude adjusted recipe:
Double-Decker Blackberry Cobbler (adapted from The Pastry Queen Parties by Rebecca Rather)
- For Crust:
- 1 cup plus 1 tablespoon sugar
- 6 cups all-purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon salt
- 1¼ cups (2½ sticks) unsalted butter, very cold
- 1 cup shortening
- About 1¼ cups cold water
- For Filling:
- 12 cups fresh blackberries
- 2 cups sugar
- ⅓ cup plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
- ½ cup cold water
- 2 tablespoons vanilla extract
- 1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
- To make the crust: grease an 8" square baking pan with butter or cooking spray.
- In a large bowl, stir together the 1 cup sugar, the 6 cups flour, and salt.
- Cut 1 cup of the butter into ½" cubes and add the to the flour mixture with the shortening.
- Work with your hands until the mixture looks crumbly, with bits of dough the size of small peas.
- Add the cold water, ¼ cup at a time, lightly mixing it with your hands after each addition.
- After adding 1 cup of the water, pinch a small bit of dough to see if it holds together. If it is still too dry, add water 1 tablespoon at a time until it holds together. You may need more or less water depending on your altitude and the dryness of your flour.
- Divide the dough in half, then divide 1 of the halves in half again, giving you three portions of dough.
- Gently fashion each portion into a ball, cover tightly with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
- To make the filling: Combine the berries and sugar in a large saucepan set over medium heat.
- Heat, stirring occasionally, until the sugar is dissolved and the berries begin to simmer.
- In a small bowl, whisk together the ⅓ cup plus 2 tablespoons flour and ½ cup water until smooth.
- Add the flour-water mixture to the berries and cook over medium heat until the liquid begins to simmer and the mixture has thickened.
- Stir in the vanilla and lemon juice.
- Remove from heat.
- To assemble the cobbler: preheat your oven to 365 F. Unwrap the large dough ball and set it on a lightly floured surface.
- Roll out into a ⅛" thick square large enough to cover the bottom and sides of the prepared baking pan with about 2" to spare on all sides. Be sure to move the dough around and rotate it frequently to keep it from sticking.
- Drape the dough over the bottom of the pan so that it comes up the sides and hangs over the pan's edges evenly. Roll up the overhanging dough and flute it.
- Add half of the berry mixture.
- Roll out the remaining 2 balls of dough to ⅛" thick, making sure that each is about an 8" square. Cut the dough into strips about 1½" wide. Place a line of parallel strips over the berries in the pan.
- Cover with the remaining berries.
- Arrange the remaining dough strips in a crisscross pattern across the top of the berries.
- Cut the remaining ¼ cup chilled butter into small cubes and dot the dough with them. Sprinkle the top with the remaining 1 tablespoon sugar.
- Bake until the top crust is golden brown and the berry mixture is bubbling, 35-40 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.
Note: This recipe was adjusted for and has instructions for high altitude baking. To enjoy at sea level you may need less water and allow for a shorter baking time, around 25-30 minutes. The amount of all-purpose flour for the blackberry filling can be reduced to 1/3 cup.