This month’s theme for “You Want Pies with That?” is pies as a fashion statement. And my statement is “Purple Passion.” Pardon the really bad photos, but the good news is that we ate this so quickly that I had no pie to go back and re-shoot. It was gone! Eaten! Vanished!
One of my favorite colors is purple, and according to the fashionistas, that color is “in” again this season. So, when I saw concord grapes at the store, and realized that I’d been wanting to make a concord grape pie for several years, I carted home a few pounds of these lovelies and got to work.
Now, a few words of warning. First, do not make this pie for guests. Why? Each grape has to be seeded, and you are bound to miss a few, which will not be a pleasant experience for diners. Second, YOU WILL HAVE TO SEED EACH SLIMY LITTLE BUGGER. It took me about 2.5 hours to seed four pounds of concord grapes, and the texture of the grape makes this hard to do. Third, the juice stains. Given the amount of work involved, despite the pie being absolutely delicious, I do not anticipate making it again, unless bribed.
Once again, I used an adaptation of Dorie Greenspan’s Good for Anything Pie Crust, and substituted cream cheese for the shortening. I tweaked a Concord Grape Pie recipe in David Lebovitz’s fantastic book, Room For Dessert : 110 Recipes for Cakes, Custards, Souffles, Tarts, Pies, Cobblers, Sorbets, Sherbets, Ice Creams, Cookies, Candies, and Cordials. If you’ve ever had Welch’s grape juice or jam, that’s what the pie tasted like but not as sugary sweet and with considerably more depth of flavor. I was surprised by that, because I thought it might have needed some lemon zest, but the pie was perfect just as it was.
To see who else baked a pie fashion statement, be sure to stop by the YWPWT blog and click on the blogroll. Recipe after the jump . . . .
Concord Grape Pie
Adapted from a recipe in Room For Dessert
Preheat the oven to 400 F, and set the oven rack in the lower third of the oven.
One double pie crust recipe (see above)
4-5 cups washed and seeded concord grapes, including skins (do not throw out the skins because that’s where the flavor and color reside)
1/2 cup sugar (you may need a bit more if your grapes are not sweet)
1/4 cup tapioca flour (not the pearls – the flour is a very fine powder)
1 egg, beaten
Roll out the pastry and put it in a 9-inch pie plate. Put it in the refrigerator.
Seed the grapes, and drain the liquid from the seeded grapes and skins. Place the grapes and skins in a bowl, add the sugar and tapioca flour, and toss to combine. Pour this into the prepared pie plate, and roll out and top with the top crust. You can use a floating crust, as I did, because it leaves a pretty purple ring aong the outside of the pie. To do this, just roll the dough out slightly smaller than the width of the pie plate. Brush the beaten egg on the top crust and sprinkle with sugar if desired.
Place pie on a baking sheet lined with parchment or a Silpat, and put in the lower third of the oven. Bake at 400 F for 30 minutes, then drop the temperature to 350 and bake about another 20 minutes until the juices are thick and bubbly.