The best day of the year is upon us, folks! Yes I know Christmas already passed, and no I’m not making some joke about my birthday. The best day ever is none other than PI DAY (3/14)! I don’t particularly care about math, so I guess I should alter that to say PIE DAY.
I loooove me some pie, ya’ll. I will take a slice of pie over pretty much any other dessert there is. That is, if you count cheesecake as a pie; otherwise I love pie AND cheesecake. And what better reason to do some baking with your kids, right?
As you have probably gathered by now- I love including Lulu in as many activities as possible. I get so much joy out of doing things WITH her instead of just for or around her. Baking is one of my favorite creative outlets, so I enjoy sharing it with her.
The berry pie I’m sharing today has many simple steps that is easy enough for baking with kids. To make it even cooler for the kiddos, this isn’t just some regular ol’ berry pie. It’s a GALACTIC Berry Pie. Because that’s what happens when mama-meets-baker-meets-nerd 🙂
Prepare the Crust
For the crust, I always use a recipe I found on Sally’s Baking Addiction. It’s the best, and Sally really breaks down the chemistry of pie crust to explain why her recipe is so great. It does require at least 2 hours of chilling, so plan accordingly.
I will let Lulu dump in pre-measured ingredients and do a little mixing. Pie crust gets tough if over mixed or too warm, so I usually take over after a minute or so.
Prepare the Filling
At this point you should preheat your oven to 425° F. I like making berry pies with Lu because they are relatively simple. I found this recipe in an older cookbook I have, called America’s Best Pies.
Mix all the berries together- this pie only requires blueberries and raspberries. Mix the dry ingredients together and sprinkle over the berries. Squeeze some lemon juice on top so everything sticks together, and stir!
I suggest letting this mixture sit for about 10-15 minutes so the tapioca can start to absorb into the berries.
Younger kids should be able to dump ingredients into the bowl and mix everything together. If you’re baking with older kids (maybe 6 or 7 and up) they will likely be able to measure ingredients out as well, with supervision.
Setting up the Pie
Make sure the crust is tucked in securely to the dish, and cut off anything that hangs off. I am not great at getting the crust edge to be beautiful, so I usually stick to fluting it. Give the bottom of your crust a light egg wash, and pile in the berry mixture. Easy peasy!
Now onto making our galaxy top crust.
Galaxy Top Pie Crust
After putting flour down on the table, Lulu rolls out the dough while I continually turn it to keep it as even as possible. Eventually I take over and make sure it is the right shape and thickness, again keeping in mind that the dough must stay cold and not be overworked to ensure a delicious flaky crust.
Once our dough is flattened, I lay it on top of the pie and tuck it all in as best as I can. I originally tried cutting designs out while it was flat, but it was too hard to lift up onto the pie.
In hindsight, perhaps you could cut the shapes out while the dough is on parchment paper, refrigerate it for a bit, and then transfer it more easily.
So then what I did was use a cookie cutter to cut the “orbit” lines, and different sized measuring spoons to cut out the “planets”. No it’s not the most gorgeous pie I’ve ever made- can I blame it on the fact that I was making it with a 3 year old? Haha!
But really, kids don’t expect Martha Stewart level pies! My daughter still got a kick out of it being a galaxy pie even with the imperfections.
Violá! The best part for me is always how proud Lulu is after we finish something and she can say SHE made it 🙂 Happy Pi day!!
Galactic Berry Pie
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- 1 cup frozen blueberries, partially thawed
- 4 cups frozen raspberries, partially thawed
- 3/4 cup sugar
- 3 1/2 tbsp quick cooking tapioca
- Pinch of salt
- 3/4 tbsp cinnamon
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 tbsp unsalted butter, cut up
- Egg glaze: 1 large egg with 1 tbsp milk added
- Prepare pie crust per the instructions on Sally’s Baking Addiction and line 9-inch pan with bottom crust.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees F. Combine all the berries in a large bowl. In a separate bowl, mix all the dry ingredients together (sugar, tapioca, salt, cinnamon, & nutmeg).
- Pour dry mixture over the berries with the lemon juice and stir everything together gently with a wooden spoon. Let mixture sit for 10-15 minutes to let the tapioca begin absorbing.
- Lightly brush the bottom of the crust dough with an egg wash. Pour berry mixture into the pie shell and place butter pieces spread over pie.
- Roll out second pie dough for top layer. Place on top of pie, tucking and smoothing along the edges. For a galaxy design, use a pizza cutter to cut lines across the dough. Then use differently circular cookie cutters or measuring spoons to cut out the circular “planets”. Brush with egg glaze and sprinkle with sugar
- Bake for 15 minutes in the lower third of the oven. Cover edges with a pie crust shield. Then raise the rack to the center and continue baking for another 55-60 minutes at 350 degrees F. If pie is getting too brown, lightly cover with foil halfway through.
- Let pie cool on a wire rack for at least 3 hours so the juices can absorb. I found that overnight is best, if you can wait that long! Slice and serve with some vanilla ice cream. Refrigerate leftovers.