Patriotic Pie

You’re looking at the Triple Berry Pie recipe that I spent all of last summer developing and testing (and retesting) for my next book, How to Celebrate Everything. (And yes, In case you are wondering, this is my family’s favorite phase of book production…except for maybe that time I made them eat a Thanksgiving dinner in July.) I’m not going to lie to you: It’s a good pie, made great by a creative top crust, surely one of the easiest ways to earn Fun Mom points with the kids. In the book, I give the play-by-play on making a lattice top, but today, I thought I’d throw a little patriotism your way, in the name of Independence Day. Here’s how I did it.

1) Follow your favorite pie recipe to the point where the filling is in the pie plate that has been lined with your bottom crust. (Again, the Triple Berry pie recipe is in my next book, but the recipe is not really the point here. The point is: Regardless of the filling, you can give any pie the star treatment.)

2) Dust your top crust with a little flour, and using a star-shaped cookie cutter, press out stars, placing on top of pie filling as you go.  You’ll have a lot of the crust leftover if you use a basic nine-incher. (I used Pilsbury storebought crusts, but obvs the recipe is going to be significantly upgraded if you make your own. If you’re going that route, Martha’s pate brisee will be your best bet. I speak from experience.)

3) Place stars on top of filling until most of the fruit has been covered. I freestyled with a paring knife to make little stars that filled in gaps. (Another bonus of the cut-out pie topping? It distracts the discerning pie-eater from any perimeter failings. (Don’t look too closely.) Update from Abby: “I think there should be more stars, even if they have to overlap, because the crust is my favorite part.” She might be on to something there.

4) Brush all the exposed dough with a beaten egg. I like mini pastry brushes for this task — good for detail work. Proceed with your pie recipe as directed. (I usually bake at 425°F for 15, then turn down to 350°F for the remaining 35-40 minutes.)

Serve warm with ice cream whenever possible. Then, hit the fireworks.

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