July 12, 2010

Blackberry and Black Pepper Ice Box Pie

5 1/2 cups fresh blackberries
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup cornstarch
1/4 cup water
1 tablespoon butter
1 1/2 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
juice and zest of 1 lemon

1 9-inch graham cracker crust

In a medium saucepan, bring 3 cups of the blackberries, pepper, lemon juice, zest and the sugar to a boil. Meanwhile, whisk together the cornstarch and water, set aside. After the blackberries come to a boil, stir in the cornstarch mixture and cook 2 additional minutes. Remove from heat and stir in the remaining blackberries and the butter. Pour into the prepared pie shell. Refrigerate for at least 6-8 hours before serving.

My thoughts:
Our blackberry bush has been a strong producer this year! We have been getting berries steadily for about a month now. Last we got a lot but in mid-August which is the more typical blackberry season here. Not that I am complaining! Fresh berries are expensive even in season so to get some free is amazing. We have a thornless bush so the harvesting isn't too harrowing. But even freshly picked berries don't have the longest life so I came up with this pie to use up a bunch. The black pepper was my husband's idea and it was a good one. It added a spicy note that really played off the tart-sweetness.