it was time to bake a pie

I don’t know if you’ve noticed yet… but I get super, duper excited when I talk about food, think about food, write about food… heck anything related to food puts me in a better state of mind.  A little obsessive eh?  Well… I will admit that I became a tad obsessive about making a brown butter pie crust.

You see – – Charlotte and I were chatting about my love of brown butter when all of a sudden (insert smack on forehead… as if I hadn’t thought of this before)… all I could think about was how brown butter would improve pie crusts… thereby improving the standard pie.  Just imagine – brown butter pecan pie, or brown butter chocolate hazelnut pie… or dare I say it… brown butter pumpkin pie!!!!  A-MAZ-ING

That’s the direction my imagination was headed in… and then I saw a pie recipe that I just knew I had to try: sad red  strawberry tart.  It sounds a little depressing (and if you click on the link and read the inspiration behind it you’ll probably feel sympathy for the baker… don’t worry – it all works out in the end for her) but it just looks so appetizing. I mean think about it :

a layer of pie crust / topped with a chocolate ganache / topped with fresh strawberries soaked in liquor /  a simple syrup drizzled on top

Nothing about that sounds sad or bad to me.  And it was time to test it out.  This pie is made in 3 steps… nothing overly complicated, they just require a little resting time between one another…

I’d made 2 batches of brown butter dough a couple of weeks ago – so all I had to do was pull it out of the freezer and allow it to temper enough to be able to roll it out.

Step # 1: make the brown butter pie crust and roll it out.

brown butter pie dough


1 1/4 c. all-purpose flour, sifted

1 tbsp brown sugar

pinch of salt

1/2 c. COLD water (ice cold water)

1/8 c. COLD brown butter, grated

1/8 c. COLD salted butter, grated

I use my KitchenAid when assembling my dough – I grab the paddle attachment and in the bowl I mix the flour, sugar and salt together.  Once it’s all incorporated, I dump in the grated butters (grating the butter is my key to a beautiful dough) and then slowly mix everything together (stir speed).  Once it looks like pebbles (about 45 seconds) slowly drizzle in the water – 1 tbsp at a time.  At this point the dough comes together – and when you pinch it, it sticks together.  Done.  Use your hands and gather all the dough into a disk.  Wrap the disk completely in plastic wrap and either chill in the fridge for at least 1 hour – or freeze. 

I tend to make a whole lot of crusts at once and freeze them for future use… but that’s just me (I figure if I’m grating butter I might as well grate a whole lot of butter!).

Back to the pie at hand though…

So my crust is ready to be rolled.  It looks tasty doesn’t it?

brown butter pie crust ready to be filled

I blind baked (filled the crust with dry beans so that it wouldn’t rise in the oven) the crust @ 425 F for 15 minutes and then removed the beans and returned the crust to the oven for another 10 minutes.  The only thing… keep an eye so that it doesn’t burn! 

Note: Charlotte and I had discussed the fact that it could burn, which is why she recommended half brown and half regular butter in the recipe.

Step # 2: make the chocolate ganache

chocolate ganache


150 g dark chocolate, finely chopped

100 g heavy cream

Heat the cream in a small saucepan over medium heat until it comes to a boil.  Pour over the chopped chocolate (in a large glass bowl) and quickly whisk them together until the chocolate has melted – – it’ll be smooth and glossy.

Pour the melted chocolate into the pie crust, smooth it out and allow to set in the fridge.

step # 2 – chocolate ganache in the pie crust

Step # 3:  strawberry and raspberry layer

boozy strawberries & raspberries


1 c. fresh strawberries, halved and quartered

1 c. fresh raspberries, whole

3 tbsp (or good drizzle) of limoncello

1 tbsp powdered sugar

*fresh mint if you have it on hand (I didn’t)

the fresh strawberries… simply gorgeous!

In a large bowl, stir together the strawberries, raspberries, sugar and limoncello.  Once well combined, allow to sit and mingle for at least 30 minutes (I left mine for a good hour).  At this point, drain the berries in a sieve and retain the liquid.

Spread the berries over the chocolate ganache.

Reduce the liquid to a syrup in a small saucepan.  You want the liquid to boil and then reduce and thicken.  Once you hit that stage – all done!

Drizzle over the berries.

the final product

There you have it!  Simple and delicious.  We enjoyed it at a Canada Day party on July 1st… it was AWE-SOME!


2 thoughts on “it was time to bake a pie

  1. Looks delicious!
    I always use butter for pie crust but this Monday I did a Rhubarb Pie with oil instead. The pie was good with a crisp topping but the crust too thick and heavy, but I am not giving up and because canola oil is a good for you fat I will give it an other try.
    by the way I processed 7 pints of rhubarb compote and froze 2 large freezer bags, ready to go at the last minute for a fool’s day!
    thanks for the inspiration.

    • YAY Michèle! That’s awesome. And I’ve attempted a oil crust before too and it wasn’t a hit… but I’ll try it again… you never know… I have rhubarb I’m going to make a crisp with this weekend for a family BBQ. :0)

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