summer berry pie with melanie gabrielle
// Thank you to Melanie for sharing this post with us! //
We love Fin & Vince’s summer nostalgia collection (it might be my favorite yet, I think I own like over half of it at this point) and to me there’s nothing more nostalgic than a summer berry pie! Every year for Fourth of July, I make this pie and my family drools over it. This year, I decided to step outside my comfort zone of pre-made pie crust to share something really special with you. My favorite strawberry pie with a homemade thyme crust - it tastes like strawberry shortcake on biscuits and it is my happy place y’all!
I always love including my kids in the baking process as much as I can. Teaching them to roll out the dough, washing the berries, stirring ingredients, and their favorite step (besides tasting it!) is cutting out the dough shapes for the top! This is such a fun and special way to make summer childhood memories and I’m so happy to share it with you.
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar
1/2 tsp sea salt
1 tsp fresh chopped thyme
2 sticks cold unsalted butter (cut into 1/4" pieces)
6 Tbsp ice water
3 pounds strawberries
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1 cup brown sugar
pinch of salt
To prep, preheat your oven to 425 and start with washing, hulling, and slicing your strawberries, then set them aside.
For the dough, mix 2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour, 1/2 Tbsp granulated sugar, 1/2 tsp sea salt, and 1 tsp fresh chopped thyme together in a bowl. Then add 2 sticks cold unsalted butter cut into 1/4" pieces, and blend until it forms pebble crumbs and stays dry and powdery. I found using a butter cutter works best, but a stand mixer at a higher speed works well too. Then add 6 Tbsp ice water until it gets sticky and forms a ball of dough. You can divide in half for top and bottom of your pie crust. Set aside.
For the filling, mix your sliced strawberries with 2 tablespoons of cornstarch, 1 cup of brown sugar, 1 zest of lemon, and a pinch of salt. The lemon zest balances the sweetness of the strawberries and the molasses in the brown sugar gives the flavor depth.
Roll out one of your dough balls and lay in your pie pan, pour your strawberry filling, then roll out your remaining dough and cut and place however you’d like to decorate the top of your pie!
I like mixing lattice with stars for the Fourth of July, but there are so many fun options you can try! When your crust is ready, I like to brush with an egg wash and sprinkle raw sugar on top (just whisk an egg and brush on top of the crust - milk or melted butter would work too) to help it get a nice browned crispy crust.
Bake at 425° for 10 minutes, then reduce the temperature to 350° for 60 minutes - if your crust is baking too fast, you can put a layer of aluminum foil loosely over the top to prevent burning. And enjoy!
You can make the dough ahead and refrigerate, just set it out before you start prepping your strawberries so that it has time to warm up a little and be ready for rolling out.
You can omit the thyme - it’s just there to add flavor, but I love the strawberry-thyme flavor combination!
Sometimes I like to double the pie dough recipe so that I have extra to work with for fun decorations.