My most vivid memories of my grandmother Eila revolve around the coffee table, which was never short of sweet and savory homemade delicacies. Around Christmas I stuffed myself with her ginger bread cookies, then there was the early summer rhubarb pie, apple pies and blueberry pies in the autumn and of course cinnamon buns all year round.
One of my all time favourites was the dark, juicy blueberry pie baked with a thick cardamon bread dough. A blueberry pie is often made with quark and a crumb base, but for me this almost black and doughy pie is the only real thing.
After several pieces of pie and many warm hugs, our car would pull out from grandma’s drive way. Eila would stand at her front door and wave at me until our car disappeared around the corner. I would wave back and smile with my purple teeth.
As the blueberry season is here again, let’s get baking! This version is gluten-free.
Grandma’s blueberry pie
This recipe makes one oven tray worth of deliciousness. I used ingredients like grandma would’ve. You can try substituting the milk and butter with vegetarian alternatives such as oat milk and margarine.
6,5 dl of gluten free white flour mix
3 dl of full fat organic milk
1 bag of dry yeast
1 dl of white cane sugar
2 tsp psyllium husk powder
2 tsp tapioca starch
1,5 tsp ground cardamom
1 tsp good quality salt
130 g of butter
600 g of frozen (or fresh) forest blueberries (a bit over 1 litre)
1 dl of white cane sugar
3 tbsp potato flour
You’ll also need one egg for brushing the crust.
Cut the butter into small cubes and let it soften in room temperature. Pour the frozen blueberries into a bowl and leave them to defrost.
Warm the milk in a saucepan until it feels warm to the hand. While the milk is warming up, mix 3 dl of flour, the dry yeast, the sugar, the psyllium, the cardamom, the salt and the tapioca well together in a separate bowl.
Pour the milk into another, large bowl. Add the dry mix gradually to the milk, whisking it thoroughly. Cover the bowl with a kitchen towel and let it sit for 10-15 min. You should see small bubbles on the surface as the dough expands.
Bit by bit, add the rest of the flour and the soft butter and knead the dough well with your hand at least for a good five minutes. The dough should start to come off from the sides of the bowl and off your hands but still remain soft. You can carefully add some more flour in case it feels very sticky.
Set 1/5 of the dough aside for decoration.
Spread some gluten free flour on an deep oven tray covered with a sheet of baking paper and pour the dough over it. Using your hands and some flour, tap the dough onto the paper until it fits the shape of the tray, the edges of the dough can rise a bit (this will create a delicious crust). Cover again with a towel and let it rise in room temperature for 35 min.
This is a good moment to turn on the oven and let it heat to 200 °c.
Break the egg in a small bowl or glass and mix it thoroughly.
Roll the rest of the dough into a long rectangular shape, about 0,5cm thick, again using flour to avoid the dough from sticking. Cut it in long, 1cm wide strips and brush them with the egg.
Get back to your bowl of blueberries. Pour the sugar and the potato flour over them and mix well. It’s OK that the berries are still icy.
After 35 minutes have passed, pour the berries over the base and spread them out evenly. Roll the sides of the dough down to form a thicker crust for your pie. Brush the crust with egg. Carefully lift the strips of dough over the pie to form a crisscross.
Put your pie in middle/lower part of the oven and let it bake for about 25min until the crust has a delicious caramel colour.
Make sure to enjoy a piece or two while the pie is still warm.