For the past month, I've been working as the Director of the LongHouse Scholars Program, a food media internship in Rensselaerville, NY. My job is part curriculum developer, part camp counselor, part media editor, and part teacher. Mostly I've been setting up a lot of structure-- planning the weekly schedule, researching background for documentaries, and managing projects. In a way, I'm setting up the frame and canvas for the 9 scholars to paint within.
That role was also true, in a sense, for these blueberry hand pies. My coworker and LongHouse chef extraordinare Ame, asked me to make several batches of pie crust that we could freeze and use throughout the program. One night during dinner prep, two scholars, Thomas and Johnisha, used some of the dough to make dessert for the scholars and staff and our visiting guests-- Rod and Debra Smith of Smith Bites. Though I've sometimes missed being the one leading the creative direction, I've also learned that I love facilitating other's artistic work, whether you can eat it with ice cream or not.
Blueberry Hand Pies
Adapted from Bon Appetit
Nothing-in-the-House Pie Crust
4 c. (about 20 oz.) fresh blueberries
2 tsp. lemon zest
2 Tblsp. lemon juice
1/2 c. sugar
1/2 tsp. kosher salt
1 large egg, whisked with 1 tsp. heavy cream
2 Tblsp. Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling
1. Prepare Nothing-in-the-House pie crust as per the directions. Once chilled, roll out dough onto a floured surface and cut into 12 rectangles of equal size. Place rectangles on parchment paper on a cookie sheet and return to chill in the fridge while you prepare the filling.
2. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F. In a medium bowl, toss blueberries, lemon zest, lemon juice, sugar, and salt. Remove cut dough from fridge and mound blueberry mixture into the center of each rectangle. Brush edges of rectangles with water, fold dough over filling, and press edges with a fork to seal. Brush hand pies with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, and cut a steam vent in the top of each.
3. On a cookie sheet lined with parchment paper, bake hand pies for 35-45 minutes, rotating cookie sheet half-way through. Filling will be bubbling and crust will be golden brown when done. Transfer pies to a wire rack and let cool. Serve warm or at room temperature with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
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