New Jersey Blues In Pie

Blueberry Pie

Blueberry Pie

Blueberries on sale…  Uh oh, here we go…

My first attempt at a double-crusted fruit pie!  The crust was phenomenal and great fun to make!

The flavor of this pie (more like a cobbler) was top notch however, the filling did not solidify due to the amount of liquid added.  If you decide to attempt this recipe, please use 1/2 cup of water for the filling recipe.

Blueberry Pie


Blueberry Filling (Doubled my own Blueberry Crostata filling recipe with some added flavor.)

2 pints New Jersey blueberries
1 C 1/2 C water
3 T potato starch
1 C organic sugar
4 t freshly squeezed lemon juice
4 t freshly squeezed orange juice
1 t lemon zest
1/4 t salt
pinch nutmeg, cinnamon, and red pepper flakes

Process:  cook 2 cups of the blueberries in the water; bring to a boil.  In a separate bowl mix the potato starch, lemon and orange juices, sugar, zest, salt and other spices; add this mixture to the boiling blueberries and stir constantly; let simmer for about 2 minutes and remove from heat; after cooled, gently add to the remaining blueberries mixing well.

Crust (Used King Arthur’s double crust recipe.)

2 1/2 C flour
1 1/4 t salt
1/4 C shortening
10 T chilled butter
6-10 T ice water
1 egg, well mixed

Process:  combine flour and salt; cut in the shortening and butter; add ice water checking for softened yet not overly wet dough; lay out on floured surface; divide in half and form two disks; wrap in plastic and refrigerate for about an hour; roll out dough to fit pie plate; add to plate and refrigerate to relax the gluten.

Roll out top dough crust; add to parchment paper and refrigerate. Add filling to chilled pie crust; apply egg wash to the crust edges; add top crust and crimp and seal all around.  Brush entire pie with egg wash; sprinkle with sugar; bake for 1 1/2 hours in a preheated 350F degree oven.

Videos for the various techniques to crimp pie crusts can be found here.

Blueberry Pie

Good luck, have fun and enjoy the delicious benefits!

KALE is Comfort Food

Creamed Kale

Creamed Kale & Spinach

Anything spinach, I’ll eat.  Spinach in anything I’ll eat.  Discovering creamed spinach has been a double-edged discovery since so much of its delicious-ness is derived from its creaminess and basically creaminess amounts to high calorie.

However, now that I know how to make it, I have control over the ingredient content!  Yay!

I only recently investigated what actually goes into making creamed spinach and realized that it is not a hard-to-master scientific experiment in the least.  It incorporates a sauce that is made using the béchamel sauce-making technique!  While I chose not to use this technique which includes adding flour as a thickener, I thought that the combination of milk and cheeses I would use would create a thick enough sauce. And it did.

I adapted a recipe from Martha Stewart who uses cream cheese and no flour.

And, since I like to combine spinach with kale and have a number of different ways in which I use kale, I thought that it could also do well in this recipe.

So, there you go, kale and spinach really is comfort food!  Enjoy!

Note 1:  For this recipe I didn’t go out of my way to substitute lower calorie ingredients in particular as I used regular cream cheese.  When I make it again, I will use a lower fat version.  I will also use less butter and continue to use low-fat milk.

Creamed Kale & Spinach

Yield = 5 cups


2 cups fresh organic Baby Spinach
2 1/2 cups fresh organic Kale

Sauce Ingredients

1 Onion, chopped
4 garlic cloves, minced
1 T Canola
Dash of red pepper flakes
Dash Salt
Dash Pepper
3 T Butter
1/2 cup milk
3 T Cream cheese
1/4 cup Gruyere

Process:  wash, cut and blanch kale and spinach; after they are cooled, squeeze all liquid from them and chop.  To make the cream sauce:  saute onion in canola oil until translucent; add garlic, red pepper flakes, salt, pepper and butter and cook for another 3 minutes; add milk and when heated add Gruyere and cream cheese; stir and cook until cheese is melted; let cool then process in a blender; return to pan and add kale and spinach and cook for another 5 minutes.

Creamed Kale