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Tuesday, July 28, 2009

twd: vanilla ice cream + fresh blueberry pie

I've gone missing from TWD the past few weeks and have dearly missed the baking camaraderie! I'm back this week, with Dorie's delicious version of vanilla ice cream, chosen by Lynne, of Cafe LynnyLu.

I've mentioned that custard freaks me out. Visions of scrambled eggy bits floating around ice cream or pudding just terrify me. And so, yesterday, with much trepidation and deep yogic breaths, I faced my demon. And, you know what? I don't know what the big deal was. The custard was simple to make. I remembered reading a tweet from one of the TWD crew that explained the consistency of a properly cooked custard, and how it is only slightly thickened, which was immensely helpful. Without this little bit of wisdom in my head, I likely would've overcooked the hell out of the custard, and had more than scrambled bits.

I made a pint, and used the last chunk of vanilla bean in my baking stash drawer, as well as some vanilla extract. I used 1% Organic Valley milk and heavy cream. I chilled the custard for several hours, and started up the LOUD ice cream machine last night, sequestering myself in my bedroom with the door closed in order to carry on a phone conversation. Except I had to keep checking the ice cream, tasting it part way through the process. You know, to make sure it was okay.

And, oh, this ice cream is wonderful, with a voluptuousness that Philadelphia ice creams just can't match. Think Marilyn versus Audrey. Both are fabulous in different ways. Most of the time I'm more of an Audrey girl myself, but sometimes, you want a little Marilyn to push you over the edge.

Last week my Mom visited for a few days, and we had great fun browsing at greenspace galleries and vintage shops. She brought me three big bags of blueberries, the first of the season, fresh from our farm. I'm still not accustomed to eating blueberries plain out of hand, but I love, love a fresh blueberry pie. It's my Dad's favorite pie, and he used to have most of the pie to himself as he and my Mom were the only ones who liked it. My brother L and I were too scarred by all of our childhood farm labor to partake (just kidding--the farm days were mostly fun. dirty. hot. seemingly endless. but fun. and profitable). Now, L and I not only love the pie, we make it ourselves at our respective homes.

The fresh blueberry pie really allows the floral overtones of the berries to shine through. And just think of the antioxidant rush eating a slice of this pie will provide!

Fresh Blueberry Pie
from my Mom, K

one 9 inch pie crust, baked to a golden brown (i make an all-butter pie crust)
3/4 c. sugar
3 T cornstarch
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 c. water
4 c. blueberries, divided
1 T lemon juice
whipped cream or ice cream

Combine sugar, cornstarch, and salt in a medium saucepan. Add water and two cups of blueberries. Cook over medium heat, stirring constantly until mixture comes to a boil and is thickened. The berries will turn into a jam like consistency, and it will be clear and thick. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice. Once it is cooled, add the remaining blueberries and stir. I sometimes add extra berries if the ratio of fresh berries to cooked looks off. Place the mixture in the pie crust and allow to chill in the refrigerator. Serve with whipped cream or vanilla ice cream, and think of those dedicated souls who hand picked those berries with love:)


  1. The ice cream and pie all look so lovely. I love how you recount your story of facing the custard demons :)

  2. Anonymous2:28 PM

    Your post reminds me of the Mad Men episode where the guys are talking about women and that they are either a Marilyn or a Jackie Kennedy.

    Your ice cream looks fab!

  3. Welcome back! We've missed you! And what a warm welcome! The ice cream looks like it would pair perfectly with that pie! Perfect summer dessert!

  4. That blueberry pie looks amazing! I bet that the vanilla ice cream was just the perfect accompaniment.

  5. What a wonderful pie that looks to be! I would love a slice, especially with some ice cream on top. Yummy!

  6. So glad you're back! I with you on the all butter pie crust. I think they are so worth the extra TLC for what they give back in flavor. Your ice cream sounds as lush and irresistible as mine was.

  7. Anonymous2:18 PM

    Your Vanilla Ice Cream looks awesome! Thanks for sharing the tweet about the custard because it really gives me problems!
    I love blueberries and am the exact opposite - love to eat them out of the hand and rarely eat them cooked/baked. But I'd definitely love a pice of your blueberry pie!! =)

  8. I am with you dad, blueberry pie is the best kind of pie. Add an exquisite vanilla ice cream and it's game over.

  9. thanks, everyone! it's good to be back! and the pie is so, so good. and the ice cream...we all know how tasty that is:)

  10. Ahh...delicious. And bags of blueberries from the farm! Aren't you the luckiest professor in the world! :)

  11. This post is just so satisfying! Ice cream successfully made, with a hand from friends to bridge the scary custard gap, and a wonderful pie with homegrown berries. Glad you're back to TWD.

  12. There's nothing better than homemade blueberry pie and ice cream. Yours looks wonderful. Thanks for making Dorie's recipe with me.