2-Ingredient Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies

Chocolate pumpkin1I’m sure I sound like a broken record by now, but lately I’ve been all about simple recipes. My only excuse is that I’m a college student…which is pretty much the best excuse for anything. Caught wearing yoga pants and Ugg boots for five days in a row? I’m just a frazzled college student focused solely on comfort while trying to get through the school week. Seen leaving a $9 tip in nothing but loose change (after a grueling 15-minute process of determining exactly how much each person owes)? We’re just poor, penny-pinching college students. Questioned as to why you’re cutting your cherry tomatoes in half with your teeth instead of using a knife like a normal human being? Actually, that one can only be attributed to nonsensical laziness…I do happen to own several knives, but I decided it would be far too strenuous to actually wash one. Please don’t laugh. Moving along…Chocolate Pumpkin3

I challenge you to find a cookie recipe that’s easier than this one! We’re talking two ingredients, one bowl, one spoon. The most difficult part of the entire process is opening a can of pumpkin (which, if your can opener is anything like my ancient rusted one at home, can actually be kind of difficult). But aside from any incidental can-opening struggles, there’s no reason not to try these! Who would’ve known that a box of chocolate cake mix and a can of pumpkin could come together to produce such soft, moist, chocolatey little cookies? Due to all the pumpkin, these cookies will stay tender for days, and their texture is actually more like a cupcake than a cookie. The combination of chocolate and pumpkin is fabulous, and I like to throw in a dash of pumpkin pie spice for a little extra flavor.Chocolate Pumpkin5

If you’re ever short on time, cash, and/or ingredients yet have a hankering for delicious cookies, these are the perfect solution! They taste way too good to be this embarrassingly easy. Whether or not you’re a lazy busy student, you should definitely try these out! There’s nothing not to like :)Chocolate Pumpkin4

2-Ingredient Chocolate Pumpkin Cookies

Makes about 3 dozen cookies

1 box chocolate cake mix

1 15-oz can pure pumpkin

1 teaspoon pumpkin pie spice (optional)

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line baking sheets with parchment paper or silicon mats and set aside.

In a large bowl, stir together the cake mix, pumpkin, and pumpkin pie spice (if you like) until well-combined. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared cookie sheets.

Bake for 9-12 minutes, or until the tops of the cookies are no longer glossy. Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the baking sheets before removing to a wire rack. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Slow-Cooker Turkey Pumpkin Chili

Chili2Last weekend I logged onto my school account with the intention of tackling my Intro to Philosophy homework. It was a Saturday afternoon, and doing homework sounded about as appealing as ripping off my fingernails one by one. Sorry for that not-so lovely image. Anyhow, I scrolled down to the assignment feeling oh-so-motivated, and what to my wondering eyes should appear but….the totally completed, already submitted assignment! I suddenly recalled that I had done the assignment right after class a few days prior to avoid the torture of doing homework on a Saturday. Way to think ahead, Wednesday-version-of-me! I felt like giving myself a hug right then and there. Best. Feeling. Ever.

Who doesn’t love that spectacular feeling of setting out to complete some dreaded task and then realizing that you already did it? It’s like a gigantic birthday and Christmas present all rolled into one. The only problem is that you have to forget the original event in order to be happily surprised later on, which is something that doesn’t happen to me all that often. Sucks to have a good memory, right?! Hah.

The great thing about slow cookers is that you can prepare dinner at an earlier point in the day (with a broad time span, since you can choose whether to cook on high or low) and then walk in the door at dinner time to a hot, homemade meal. When I’m hungry, I’m hungry, and it’s so nice to have food waiting for me when I can’t make it home until later in the evening.Chili4

This Turkey Pumpkin Chili is wonderful for so many reasons: not only is it a fantastic, flavorful chili (one of my favorite foods in the world), but it’s also quite healthy and requires very minimal prep work. You just have to brown a pound of turkey and then throw all the ingredients into the slow cooker. I suppose there’s also a slight bit of chopping involved, but for all intents and purposes this is a highly-doable meal for any busy weekday! Since I cook for one and the recipe makes a fairly large batch, I had leftovers for dayssss, and the chili also freezes really well. You can go the more traditional route and serve it with cornbread, or you can do what I did and spoon it over half of a roasted sweet potato. That combo=heaven in a bowl!

Maybe you’ll even get lucky and forget that you have a Crock Pot full of chili waiting for you, and you can experience that awesome feeling of having one fewer thing on your to-do list! Just don’t forget about the chili completely, because then bad things could happen….I feel I should include that as a disclaimer so you don’t go blaming me for your melted Crock Pot or something of similar nature.

I highly recommend adding this Turkey Pumpkin Chili to your dinner rotation! Its warm spices and plethora of hearty beans/turkey/veggies make it the perfect meal for chilly fall evenings, and it practically makes itself. Enjoy!Chili3

Slow-Cooker Turkey Pumpkin Chili

Makes about 6 servings

1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil

1 pound lean ground turkey

2 large garlic cloves, minced

1 jalapeño pepper, seeded and minced

1 medium onion, diced

1 bell pepper, diced

1 15-oz can kidney beans, drained and rinsed

1 14.5-oz can diced tomatoes (with liquid)

1 15-oz can pure pumpkin

1 & 1/2 cups water or broth

2 tablespoons chili powder

1 tablespoon ground cumin

1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Salt and pepper, to taste

Directions:

Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the ground turkey, garlic, and jalapeño, and cook until the turkey is browned on the outside (it’s fine if the inside is still pink). Transfer the mixture to a slow cooker.

Add the rest of the ingredients to the slow cooker. Give it a few stirs to break up the pumpkin, and cook on low for 6-8 hours or on high for 4-6 hours. Top with shredded cheese, avocado, and/or sour cream if desired.

Store leftovers in the refrigerator for up to 5 days. The chili also freezes beautifully.

(Recipe adapted from Table for Two)

Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Bars

Pumpkin bars1Much of the world makes no sense to me. You may be thinking Thank you, Captain Obvious, but I’m talking about all the little facts and rules that just don’t seem reasonable. For example, in school you can get an A, B, C, D…or an F. I have never understood why there isn’t an E. Also, why do “fat chance” and “slim chance” mean the same thing, when they clearly sound like opposites? The teeny tiny candy bars are the “fun-sized” ones, and the numbers 11-13 have special names that completely ignore the pattern. Senseless, I tell you!

One of the things that always stumped me when I was little was the dates of the seasons. If it was up to me, summer would be June-August, fall would be September-November, winter would be December-February, and spring would be March-May. Of course, now I know that the “official” seasons do have a bit of legitimate reason behind them (“equinox” was not a term I was familiar with at the innocent age of 5), but I still find it strange to think that the coldest days in early December are actually “autumn” days and that the first three weeks of March are technically winter. Right now, for instance, we’re still on the tail end of summer. I can’t say that the weather down here in Oregon is disagreeing (we’re expected to reach 93 degrees today!), but with the start of school and the first orange leaves appearing on the trees outside my window, I can’t help but consider it to be autumn. September 15 just doesn’t make you think “summer!” Am I right or am I right?Pumpkin bars8

I’ve decided to officially declare it fall on Emma’s Baking Addiction and break out the pumpkin! One of my favorite times of the year to bake is during these autumn months, during the harvest season of giant juicy apples and bright orange pumpkins. I love baking with warm fall spices such as cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger, and cloves, especially when paired with apple or pumpkin baked goods. There’s nothing like the smell of pumpkin snickerdoodle bars or apple-cinnamon bread baking in the oven and filling the house with the scents of the season. I’ve been known to go a little pumpkin-crazy throughout September, October, and November, so expect more pumpkin recipes to come!Pumpkin bars5

Pumpkin is making its first debut of the year in the form of these Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Bars. At first, the combination of pumpkin and chocolate may sound a bit odd (if it doesn’t, then hooray for you and your natural ability to recognize a good combo when you see one!) but it’s really fantastic. The soft, sweet, spiced pumpkin bars studded with pockets of rich chocolate are heaven! Also, don’t confuse these bars with snack cake or sheet cake…they’re a lot more like blondies in texture, and are supremely chewy and moist. There’s a time and a place for crumbly, fluffy pumpkin cake, but this is not it! These bars also stay soft for days, and I find that they taste best on the second or even third day when the flavors have melded and the spicy pumpkin flavor is enhanced.

Welcome fall with open arms by making a batch of these Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Bars! I’ve already been asked for the recipe, and they didn’t last long around these parts. I’m so glad I didn’t wait until the official fall equinox to bake these…they’re just too good!Pumpkin bars2

Pumpkin-Chocolate Chip Bars

Makes about 16 bars

1/2 cup butter, melted

1 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 large egg

3/4 cup canned pure pumpkin

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

2 teaspoons pumpkin pie spice*

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1/8 teaspoon salt

1 & 1/4 cups all-purpose flour

1 cup chocolate chips

*Instead of pumpkin pie spice, you can use a mixture of 1 tsp cinnamon, 1/2 tsp ground ginger, and 1/4 tsp each of nutmeg and cloves

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line an 8×8 baking pan with aluminum foil or parchment paper, leaving a slight overhang. Spray or grease lightly and set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the melted butter, brown sugar, egg, pumpkin, vanilla, cinnamon, spices, and salt until smooth. Gently stir in the flour just until combined. Fold in the chocolate chips, reserving a tablespoon or so to sprinkle on top.

Spread the batter into the prepared pan. Smooth the top with a spatula and sprinkle evenly with reserved chocolate chips. Bake for about 30-34 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean or with just a few moist crumbs. Cool completely before slicing into squares.

(Recipe adapted from Averie Cooks)

Flourless Peanut Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies

IMG_0245So. Let’s overlook the fact that this recipe might possibly be interpreted as cheating, since I already have two variations of these cookies here on the blog, and just roll with it. Because seriously, guys, these cookies are good enough to be posted three times! They’ve always been one of my go-to recipes for their a) minimal ingredients, b) quickness, c) easiness, and d) gluten-freedom (I was gonna say “freeness,” but “freedom” has the upper hand of actually being a word.)

While you can stick to my original 3-ingredient recipe and make these with 1 cup of peanut butter, 1 cup of sugar, and 1 egg (yes, that’s all!!!), I prefer to use this recipe with its little adjustments. It goes against my nature as a baking addict to just leave a good recipe alone, so naturally I’ve come up with some tweaks. First of all, using half brown sugar and half white makes the cookies especially chewy and flavorful. Brown sugar FTW! Secondly, I add vanilla to pretty much everything (including my oatmeal while it’s cooking–if you haven’t tried it, DO!), so of course I had to include it in these cookies. The baking powder is just for a little extra lift, and I’m sure the chocolate chips need no explanation. Chocolate should never need an explanation–remember that.IMG_0242

These cookies are the perfect recipe for a college student with a limited budget, limited time, and a limited kitchen (namely myself), or anyone else who wants cookies that are fast, easy, don’t require a grocery store trip, and/or are gluten-free. Despite their lack of flour (and other usual cookie ingredients), they’re some of the best cookies I make. In fact, they’re the only peanut butter cookies I ever make! What more could you want than a perfectly chewy, slightly-crisp-around-the-edges, ultra-peanut buttery cookie with chocolate chips? Actually, I can think of quite a few things, but for all intents and purposes the proper answer here is “nothing.”IMG_0250

Flourless Peanut Butter-Chocolate Chip Cookies

Makes about 2 dozen cookies

1 cup creamy peanut butter

1 large egg

1/2 cup granulated sugar

1/2 cup light brown sugar, packed

1 teaspoon baking powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1/2 cup chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 350 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with parchment paper or baking mats and set aside.

In a large bowl, stir together all ingredients except for the chocolate chips until well-combined. Fold in the chocolate chips. Drop by rounded tablespoons onto prepared cookie sheets. (At this point, if you like thinner cookies, you can slightly flatten each ball of dough or make a criss-cross pattern with a fork.)

Bake for 8-10 minutes, or until the cookies are set around the edges and the tops are no longer shiny. Err on the side of underdone! Let the cookies cool for 5 minutes on the sheets before transferring to a wire rack. Store in an airtight container at room temperature.

Butterscotch Browned Butter Blondies

bbb4Bear with me here, okay? The last ten days have been a whirlwind of packing boxes, saying see-you-laters, driving, unpacking, saying hello-agains, setting up a mini-apartment, and starting new classes. I’ve started round 2 of this crazy thing called college, and once again I am reminded that yes, it is possible to simultaneously hate change and love it, and to feel approximately 10,000 emotions all at once. So I’m sorry for the brief hiatus from baking, but I’m sure you kind souls will understand!

The bad news is that my super-talented photographer brother is far far away in Montana (sniffle), so my baked goods no longer have the luxury of being beautified and clarified by his mad skills. Instead, we get my not-so-talented iPhone photos. Let’s just say that beauty and clarity are not the first two adjectives that come to mind when I look at them! We all know that we eat with our eyes, so just use your imagination and trust that these blondies taste even more delicious than they look.

The good news, on the other hand, is that this year I’m lucky enough to be living in an  apartment-style dorm with two of my best friends (and one super-friendly new roommate), which happens to have its own little kitchen! We also have four (tiny) bedrooms, two bathrooms, four bathroom sinks, a little living room, a TV, a VCR (yes, those things still exist!), and a fake potted plant featuring our two plastic flamingos, Mushu and Lulu (long story). (As you can tell, my obsession with parenthesis continues.)bbb3

Compared to last year’s standard freshman experience (i.e. living in what felt like a cubicle, carrying a shower kit to and from the bathroom every day, and eating way too much cafeteria food) I’m living a life of luxury. I couldn’t wait to break in our new kitchen, so as soon as my last class was over on Friday I made a quick trip to Safeway for ingredients and got straight to work.

While cookies are my usual go-to, we only have one cookie sheet and zero electric mixers, so I opted instead for cookie bars aka blondies. I knew I could just use melted butter since blondies are baked in a pan and won’t spread like cookies, and I also just really love blondies. Since I was already melting the butter I went ahead and browned it, which is never ever ever a bad decision ever. Browned butter gives whatever it’s in a nutty, caramel-y depth of flavor and it makes your kitchen smell amazing for hours!bbb2

Apart from browning the butter, which really isn’t that hard, this recipe is about as simple as it gets. I used one bowl, one spoon, and one pan, which I lined with parchment paper for easy clean-up. Very do-able for tiny apartments and limited supplies! I chose to add in chocolate chips, butterscotch chips, and a dash of cinnamon, but you can think of this recipe as a base for whatever type of bars you fancy. I’ve made them in the past with shredded coconut, white chocolate chips, and chopped nuts, and in my option the more loaded they are, the better! Hopefully everyone shares this opinion, since I halved the original recipe and forgot to halve the chips, meaning they were very, um, chippy. No one seemed to mind :).

It felt so good to be back in the kitchen after a crazy week! There’s something about the predictability of measuring, mixing, and baking that’s incredibly comforting, which is part of the reason I love to bake so much. It also brings back memories, provides a sense of focus, allows for creativity, and best of all, results in delicious things! Baking addict forever <3.

Enjoy these Butterscotch Browned Butter Blondies, everyone! Say that five times fast.bbb5

Butterscotch Browned Butter Blondies

Makes about 16 bars

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter

3/4 cup brown sugar, packed

1/4 cup granulated sugar

1 large egg

1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

1 cup all-purpose flour

1/2 teaspoon baking powder

1/4 teaspoon baking soda

1/4 teaspoon salt

1/2 teaspoon ground cinnamon (optional)

1/2 cup butterscotch chips

1/2 cup semisweet chocolate chips

Directions:

Preheat oven to 325 degrees F. Line (or grease) an 8×8″ baking pan with parchment paper, leaving a 2-inch overhang. Set aside.

Place the butter into a small saucepan and melt over medium heat. Let it cook for about 5 minutes, whisking constantly, until it turns dark golden-brown and smells nutty and fragrant. Be careful to stop as soon as the butter is browned, because it can quickly burn! Set the browned butter aside to cool as you prepare the dry ingredients.

In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, baking powder, baking soda, salt, and cinnamon. Set aside.

Add both sugars to the slightly cooled butter (you can just mix it all in the saucepan), whisking until smooth. Whisk in the egg and vanilla until smooth and glossy. Gently stir in the dry ingredients, mixing just until no flour streaks remain. Stir in the butterscotch and chocolate chips.

Scrape the batter into the prepared pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes, or until an inserted toothpick comes out clean. Cool completely before slicing into bars.

(Recipe adapted from Brown Eyed Baker)

 

Silken Chocolate Fudge Pie

IMG_4553Secret ingredients are my favorites. I love being on either end of the guessing game: the eater or the maker. I know that many people run away screaming when they’re approached with a mystery food and the claim that they’ll “never ever guess what’s in it,” but I’m certainly not one of them. I love finding out that the seemingly innocent chocolate pudding given to me with a sly grin was made out of avocado, cocoa powder, and coconut sugar; on the flip side I find it largely entertaining to watch my family try to guess what gives my black bean chili a certain depth of flavor, never suspecting that the answer is a trio of pumpkin, cinnamon, and cocoa powder. Whether it’s a dash of cinnamon in a homemade cherry pie or a can of black beans in a batch of flour-less brownies, I’m always excited to try out a recipe made with something you’d never expect.IMG_4556

This Silken Chocolate Fudge Pie can easily fool you into thinking it’s sinful. Its smooth, rich chocolatey filling tastes just like (a really good) chocolate cream pie, and it manages to be firm yet airy at the same time. I’m pretty confident that I could have eaten the entire pie if I let myself, especially when topped with a dollop of whipped cream! The best part is that even though this pie may look and taste like a dessert packed with sugar, cream, and butter, it’s surprisingly healthy!IMG_4566

Made with a short list of ingredients that are simply thrown into a food processor and blended, this pie is incredibly quick and easy. It doesn’t even need to bake! There’s no gluten or dairy involved, and in this case the sneaky little wonder ingredient is…tofu! Stick with me here. I know lots of people turn up their noses at tofu, hating on its bland mild taste and unappealing acquired texture, but in this pie it is virtually undetectable. It manages to give the pie its firmness without adding any funky aftertastes so that all you end up tasting is rich, delicious chocolate.IMG_4574

The rest of the ingredients aren’t scary at all: milk, cocoa powder, vanilla, salt, and melted chocolate. I was feeling rebellious and decided to ruin the healthiness of it all by pouring the filling into a store-bought shortbread crust (and possibly going so far as to top it with Cool Whip), but you could definitely make your own pie crust or just pour it into little ramekins and serve as a custard-y dessert. Firm tofu will create a more traditional pie that holds together well, but if you want a more mousse-like pie or  a crustless pudding, just use soft tofu. Ten points to tofu for its versatility….yet another reason it’s such a star in this recipe!IMG_4583

So, the next time you catch yourself with a chocolate craving, go the healthy route and whip up this chocolate pie! It’s guaranteed to satisfy your sweet tooth without the extra baggage of junky ingredients, and it’s also fun to serve to unsuspecting friends. I bet they’ll never guess it’s made with tofu…I know I wouldn’t have!IMG_4576

Silken Chocolate Fudge Pie

10 ounces semisweet chocolate chips

12.3 ounces firm tofu*

2 tablespoons milk (soy, almond, etc. all work fine)

1 teaspoon unsweetened cocoa powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Pinch of salt

2 tablespoons granulated sugar or agave nectar (more or less to taste)

1 pre-baked pie shell

Whipped cream (optional)

Directions:

Melt the chocolate chips in the microwave or in a double boiler, stirring until smooth. Place all the other ingredients into a food processor or high-powered blender and scrape in the melted chocolate. Blend or process until very smooth. Mixture will be thick.

Pour the filling into the prepared crust and refrigerate for at least 2 hours. The longer it chills, the firmer it will be (I chilled mine overnight). Slice and serve, topped with whipped cream if desired.

*For a softer, mousse-like pie, use soft/silken tofu rather than firm

(Recipe adapted from Chocolate Covered Katie)

Wild Blackberry Pie

IMG_4054When my brother and I were about seven years old, my parents decided to convert our backyard sandbox into a miniature strawberry patch. Considering that no one in my immediate family was (or is) much of a gardener, this was a pretty big deal. At that point, the closest I’d ever come to home-grown food was the handful of gnarly apples that our ancient little tree managed to produce every other year and the crazy mass of rhubarb that grew around our sandbox-turned-strawberry-patch. Compared to our across-the-street neighbors’ perfectly trim, maintained vegetable garden, our 3’x5′ strawberry box wasn’t exactly impressive, but that didn’t stop my brother and me from running out to the yard every day to check on our strawberries’ progress.

The first few years were pretty disappointing…only a couple of teeny-tiny (yet sweet!) berries appeared among the leaves, which we quickly gobbled up. Each year seemed to be a bit better, though, and by the time we put our house up for sale in 2003 our strawberry patch had quite a few juicy red berries to boast. Of course it happened that just when our little plant was starting to thrive we had to pack up and leave….but isn’t that the way it always seems to go? Sigh.

Still, even those tiny red sandbox strawberries taught me an important lesson…garden-grown produce is not in the same league as store-bought. Not even close. It goes for anything: berries, tomatoes, lettuce, beans, carrots, you name it! I love this time of year when the farmer’s market is in full swing and our green-thumbed friends and neighbors gift our family with “real” fruits and veggies. It’s also the time of year for blackberry picking, one of my favorite parts of summer!IMG_4069

When we first moved to the area and discovered it teeming with wild blackberry bushes I was beside myself with the excitement of berry-picking. I loved the rustic feeling of heading down the driveway with a bucket swinging from my hand, plunking in berry after berry to the point of near-overflow. I never minded all the scratches that covered my wrists and shins after a session of blackberry picking; it was all worth it to get that perfect patch of berries tucked among the thorns. I always felt a little like Laura Ingalls Wilder, collecting a bounty of wild blackberries to bake into pies and eat over porridge (aka oatmeal).

To this day I’m still a berry-picking fanatic. I often venture down to the best bushes on our road after dinner and fill a bowl or two with ripe, gigantic blackberries. Secretly I love to close my eyes and just breathe in the smell of them. It brings back a flood of memories of hot summer days at our county fair, pie-baking with my friends, and squeezing in one last trip to the bushes on the night before the first day of school. This year I went a little crazy and had to fill three gallon-size ziplock bags with blackberries to freeze since there’s only so many that my family can eat up while they’re fresh. I also made sure to bake a blackberry pie, which my dad has deemed his favorite pie in the world.

The quality of a pie is largely determined by the quality of the fruit inside it, and that’s what makes my wild blackberry pie extra-delicious. I never buy blackberries from the store since they grow so plentifully around here, but earlier this year I had store-bought blackberries at a friend’s house and was shocked by the difference in flavor. All I can say is that those seedy little berries in the plastic containers are not real blackberries. Wild blackberries are so much sweeter, softer, juicier, and more fragrant that I can’t even think of them as the same fruit. Sorry to diss the store-boughts, but it’s the cold hard truth!IMG_4071

While I’ll never say no to a fresh blackberry straight off the bush, sprinkled into a fruit salad, or served over vanilla ice cream (gah), they really shine in this pie. The filling is kept simple to let the blackberries dominate, but the flavors of bright lemon and warm vanilla add a perfect little enhancement to the sweet berries. This recipe also uses tapioca starch (tapioca flour) to thicken the filling. I like the mild, slightly-sweet flavor of tapioca better than cornstarch, which has a more “starchy” taste, but you could always substitute it in a pinch. I’ve never been a pro at making pie crust (far from it, in fact), but this crust was surprisingly easy to work with. It’s an all-butter crust (yay for flavor!), and as long as you make sure that your ingredients are extremely cold and you’re careful not to add more water than necessary, you’ll end up with tender, flaky crust. I used to take the shortcut of buying a pre-made Pillsbury pie crust, but homemade is so much better. If you’re willing to brave making your own crust, I promise the end result will be worth the time and effort!

So…it just occurred to me that I’ve suggested that this recipe is unattainable to anyone who doesn’t happen to have blackberries growing out their back door. You know, since wild berries are so superior. While this is true, I hate to alienate all of you poor wild blackberry-less souls, so I’ll let you know that you could make this pie with store-bought blackberries. Fresh or frozen. I can’t say your pie will be the same, but it will probably still taste pretty good. It might even taste really good. You could also use any type of berry you like (blueberries, raspberries, loganberries, etc.) and I’m guessing you’d still end up with a darn delicious pie. So go ahead! I’ll shut up about the superiority of wild berries. But before I shut up, if you do have access to the wild ones, your pie will be even more amazing. Just keepin it honest! ;)

IMG_4078Wild Blackberry Pie

Makes one 9-inch double-crust pie

For the crust:

2 & 1/2 cups all-purpose flour

1 teaspoon salt

1 teaspoon sugar

1 cup (2 sticks) cold butter, cut into small cubes

1/3-1/2 cup ice water

For the filling:

6 cups blackberries

1/4 cup tapioca starch

1/2 cup sugar (add more to taste if your berries aren’t super sweet)

1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice

1 teaspoon fresh lemon zest

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

For assembling:

1 egg, beaten

Extra sugar, for sprinkling

Directions:

Place the flour, salt, and 1 tsp sugar into a food processor* and pulse once or twice to combine. Add in the chopped butter and process for about 10 seconds, or until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Pour the water through the food chute 1 tablespoon at a time, pulsing 2-3 times after each addition. As soon as the dough starts to stick together, pat it into a ball.

*If you don’t have a food processor, simply whisk together the dry ingredients and then cut in the butter using a pastry cutter or two forks. Sprinkle the water in 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with a fork after each addition. When the dough sticks together, pat it into a ball.

Divide the dough ball in half and flatten each half into a thick disc. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 1 hour.

When ready to make the pie, preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. On a floured surface, roll out one of the pie dough discs into an 11-inch circle, then carefully transfer to a 9-inch pie plate. Gently press the crust into the pan and refrigerate while you prepare the filling.

Place the blackberries in a large bowl and sprinkle with the tapioca starch, sugar, lemon juice, lemon zest, and vanilla. Gently fold or toss the mixture until the berries are coated. Let the berries macerate (release their juices) while you roll out the second pie crust. If desired, cut the dough into 1/4-1/2″ strips for a lattice crust.

Take the pie plate out of the fridge and brush the bottom crust with beaten egg. Spoon in the berry filling and top with the second crust. If you’re making a lattice crust, weave the strips of dough onto the pie and smooth out the edges with your fingers. Cut off any excess pie dough around the sides, leaving enough overhang to crimp the edges. Brush the top crust with the remaining egg and sprinkle with sugar if desired.

Bake the pie for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 375 degrees and bake for an additional 20-30 minutes. When the crust is golden-brown and the filling is bubbly, remove from the oven. If the edges are browning too fast, loosely cover with aluminum foil. Cool the pie for at least an hour before slicing.

(Crust and filling recipes adapted from The Baker Chic)