Glorious Winterberry pie
Glorious GlutenFree WinterBerry Pie

To me there’s just something about a warm pie in the winter served with a side of freshly whipped cream. And then to add the word berry to it, oh my stars, that’s enough to make me smile from ear to ear. In the middle of the winter I find myself wanting to eat comfort food, but it’s so unhealthy that I had to find some alternatives. This winterberry pie is absolutely incredible.

If you don’t know it by now, I looooove, looove, love food. I love berries and a lot of people do, I’m actually thinking of growing my own berries in the near future. This recipe is gluten free as well as refined sugar free. Also a side note, this recipes will work with any kind of fruit, if it’s not a soft fruit you may want to mush it though.

So here we go…

Preparation time: Approximately 1h45m

Ingredients for the crust of the winterberry pie, remember this is gluten free:
(Side note: I’m from South Africa so it’ll be South African ingredients, but I have lived in the USA and it’ll be incredibly easy for you to find these ingredients there, easier than in South Africa)

  • 2 cups GlutenFree Flour Mix. (I used Health Connection Wholefoods Mix)
  • 25g Sugar. (any kind, but Organic Coconut Sugar works well and doesn’t count as refined)
  • a pinch of Salt.
  • 1 egg.
  • 1 tsp of flaxseed powder. (I used Health Connection Wholefoods’)
  • 1 cup of butter, but preferably chilled coconut oil.
  • 10ml Lemon Juice.
  • 45ml water, chilled and distilled.
  • If your GlutenFree Flour mix doesn’t already have Xanthan Gum included, you should add 1tsp of Xanthan Gum. (If you are allergic to gums you may use ½ a tsp of gelatin solution. You could also completely leave out the gum, but it will affect the dough to a degree, bot not the taste.)

Ingredients for berry filling, but you may use other fruit if desired:

  • 5 to 5½ cups of frozen berries (It’s not berry season. If you go to Woolworths the best mix to buy would be the summer berry mix, which is hilarious considering the name of my pie.) The berries should be defrosted and drained.
  • 1 tsp Cinnamon or to taste.
  • ¼ cup gluten-free corn starch, I like the pie to not be to goopy.
  • ½ cup of sugar, again Organic Coconut Sugar works best. You may add more if you’re a super sweet tooth.

*Extra egg for brushings.

Instructions:

  1. Preheat the oven to 190 degrees Celsius/370 degrees Fahrenheit and spray your approximately 23cm/9inch pan.
  2. Mix your GlutenFree flour mix, sugar, flaxseed powder and salt together in a bowl. Also mix the Xanthan Gum or substitute in, if your flour doesn’t contain it already. Once mixed add in the chilled Coconut oil by folding it in with a fork until it’s pretty smooth or all the clumps are gone.
  3. In another bowl whisk the egg, lemon juice and 45ml chilled water together. Once mixed well fold into the flour mix, until smooth or moist. It shouldn’t be too dry, but it should be able to form a dough ball by now. If not, slowly add chilled water tsp by tsp until this can be achieved. Do not add too much water, the dough shouldn’t be wet.
  4. Roll all the dough together in your hands to make a big dough ball. Next split the dough ball in two. Put the one ball in the fridge while working with the other.
  5. I found that this part of my recipe was the trickiest for me, because I wasn’t really sure how sticky the dough was going to be, Use two sheets of wax paper and some GF flour and place the dough in between. Roll the dough out to about half a cm/quarter inch in thickness. You would have to roll it out bigger than the pan.
  6. Remove the top piece of wax paper and put the pan over the dough. Put your hand gently underneath the bottom piece of wax paper and turn the pan and dough over together. Remove the other piece of wax paper.
  7. You may now shape the dough properly into the pan as you see fit. If it breaks or cracks, just use your fingers to smooth it out with some water. You should also cut away the edges. Do not cut away to much of it though, because the dough will shrink in size a little.
  8. Stick holes in the bottom using a fork, since the crust will bubble up during baking if you don’t do it.
  9. Let the dough rest by putting it into the fridge for 25-30 minuets.
  10. While the dough is resting you should start the berry/other fruit filling. Mix together all the filling ingredients and put into the fridge, while you turn on the kettle to make yourself a cup of coffee.
  11. Pre-bake the crust you put into the fridge for 30 minuets, or until it’s fairly dry, don’t over bake. 30 mins should be perfect.
  12. While you pre-bake the crust, remove the other dough ball from the fridge and roll it out between the wax-paper again. This time roll it out a little thinner than before. After rolling it out, cut out the lattice or patterns or whatever you want to decorate your pie with. You may also just put the whole crust over the pie. 🙂 (My mum helped me with the lattice, because I don’t like doing it. We baked the one in the picture together.) To be honest doing proper lattice with this dough will be a little harder than usual, because it tends to be fragile.
  13. Take out the pre-baked crust and let it stand for about 5 minuets. Brush an egg white over the pre-baked crust, this will help the crust set properly.
  14. Increase the oven’s temperature to 220 degrees Celsius/420 degrees Fahrenheit. Dish the berry filling mix into the pre-baked crust and put your decorations or lattice on.
  15. Brush the top of the crust/pie with the egg yolk and put back into the oven for 30-35 minuets or until the berries bubbles to the top and the crust is brown.
  16. Take out of the oven and let it rest for a while. The pie can be served warm or cold. I found that it’s best to let it completely set for about two hours in the fridge and then heat up each piece you want to serve.

This winterberry pie recipe is great with some Vanilla Ice-Cream, BUT I prefer freshly whipped cream, to me it tastes better. I do hope you love this recipe and that it would be a great dessert for your winter or even summer. Make it a Family tradition, a Thanksgiving Pie, or invite over some friends and test it out. I can guarantee that everyone will love it.

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