Friday, June 22, 2012

Fresh Berry Pie with Toasted Nut Crust

This Fresh Berry Pie with Toasted Nut Crust was made
in a spring form pan.
This Fresh Berry Pie with Toasted Nut Crust was made
in a standard glass pie plate.
Serves 8
Recipe from
Husband Tested in Alice’s Kitchen

When the berries are in abundance, make this delectable pie.  A crumbly homemade nut crust sets this tart apart from other berry pies. This pie is not too sweet.  And it’s not half bad for you too.  There’s protein from the nuts and egg, plus the crust also includes whole-wheat flour.  Using nonfat yogurt and light sour cream for the filling cuts down on calories.  And to top it off, each slice is loaded with berries.  If you are a pie novice, the crust is the “press in” type.  You could even bake the pie shell, crumble it up and then layer it with the filling and berries for a beautiful parfait. 

¼ cup each almonds, pecans, and hazelnuts (You could also substitute walnuts for any of these nuts.)
¾ cup whole-wheat flour
¼ cup sugar
¼ tsp. salt
6 Tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, diced
1 large egg yolk

Filling (If you like lots of filling, the ingredients can be doubled.)
½ cup light sour cream
½ cup nonfat plain Greek yogurt, drained of whey**
2 Tablespoons light brown sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
¼ teaspoon freshly grated orange zest
1 Tablespoon fresh orange juice
2 cups blueberries, raspberries, strawberries and/or black raspberries
1 Tablespoon sugar

**Note: Draining the whey will thicken the yogurt.  Here’s how:  Place a coffee filter in a sieve.  Put the yogurt in the coffee filter.  Place the sieve over a bowl and store in the refrigerator overnight or for several hours.  The whey (liquid) will have dripped to the bottom of the bowl leaving the yogurt thickened in the filter.  The consistency will be similar to cream cheese.

To make crust: Preheat oven to 350°F. Coat 8 or 9-inch pie pan or tart pan with cooking spray. Set aside. Spread nuts on baking sheet and toast in oven 12 to 15 minutes, or until browned. Set aside to cool.
When the nuts have cooled, pulse nuts, flour, sugar, and salt in food processor until nuts are very finely ground. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add egg yolk and pulse until moist clumps form. Press dough into bottom and sides of prepared pan until about ¼-inch thick, and pierce with fork. Freeze for 30 minutes.
Adjust oven temperature to 400°F. Bake Crust 12 to 14 minutes, or until golden. Cool completely before filling.

To make filling: whisk together sour cream, thickened yogurt, brown sugar, vanilla, orange juice and orange zest in small bowl. Spread sour cream mixture in crust with spatula. Chill. (The filling will thicken and set up after it has chilled in the refrigerator.)  Toss berries with 1 Tablespoon sugar in separate bowl. Spoon berries over top a little at a time, until sour cream mixture is evenly covered. Refrigerate 30 to 60 minutes before serving.  It can be made up to three days ahead and refrigerated until ready to use.

*Note:  I’ve made this pie many times.  Sometimes I’ve had a little trouble removing a piece of this pie without the slice falling apart. (When that happens, I just pile the fabulous nut crust chunks, filling and berries right on a plate or layer them in parfait glasses.  That’s what Julia Child would most likely do.)  However, I’ve had much better success with keeping the slices in tact by preparing the pie in an 8-inch spring form pan. After removing the spring form “frame” the tart/pie slides right out and is much easier to serve.

Per Slice:  Calories: 288; Protein: 6 g; Total Fat: 19 g; Saturated Fat: 9 g; Carbohydrates: 26 g; Cholesterol: 58 mg; Sodium: 87 mg; Fiber: 4 g; Sugar: 13 g

Here's a photo of this fabulous pie with
fresh-picked, local Amish strawberries.
And here it is with lovely raspberries!

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