Bumble-berry pie is an old-fashioned name for a pie made with several varieties of berries. Once you bake your first homemade pie you will never again eat the one bought at the store.
Driving past suburban developments, then past the fields and farms dotted with beautiful, classic stone houses, visitors to Bucks county might find themselves at one of the most charming destinations in eastern Pennsylvania, Peddler’s Village.
About halfway between the Bucks county seat of Doylestown and the famously artsy river town of New Hope, Peddler’s Village is a collection of lovely, unique little shops and restaurants, housed in colonial style buildings. Most of the shops are situated around a gorgeously landscaped, well-maintained “village green”, which is bordered by cobblestone walkways lined with hanging baskets full of seasonal flowers.
There’s also a picturesque pond, complete with frogs. The Village even boasts a moving water wheel which, though only decorative, still adds to the Old World charm of the place. Yearly festivals and events include the Strawberry and Apple festivals, as well as scarecrow and gingerbread house competitions. Merchants at Peddlers Village carry everything from jewelry, clothing and home decor to toys and fine paper goods, but food is everywhere! There are full-service restaurants and a colonial style tavern. There’s a cute little ice cream shop and nearby, a shop with the most wonderful aroma of roasted nuts in the air and the freshest, best-tasting nuts anywhere in the cases.
Across the street from the main square is a popular coffee shop, with great coffee by the bag or cup and delicious baked goods to have with your hot or iced drink. The candy store voted the best in two counties is also here, selling home made, small batch sweets, so the candy is always fresh. There’s an award-winning Pennsylvania winery represented here with tastings available most days as well as special events throughout the year. The cookware shop has pots, pans, gadgets and linens to please everyone from accomplished cook to beginner or weekend chef.
The most beautiful time of year at Peddler’s Village is of course the Holiday season. Trees are outlined in lights and lit all at once by Santa’s flick of a switch on a special night in November. Gingerbread houses entered in the competition are on display through the holidays in a large gazebo on the square. Lovely Victorian-style decorations abound throughout the village. Few places capture the beauty and festive spirit of the holidays as well as this unique Bucks county gem, one of the many reasons that Peddler’s village is enjoyed by local folk and visitors alike, through every season of the year.
Homemade Raspberry and Blueberry Pie with Vanilla Sugar Top
Note: If fresh berries are unavailable, use frozen blueberries, raspberries (without thawing them first) and increase the baking time by 10 to 15 minutes.
For the pie dough:
- 1 1/3 cup all-purpose flour
- pinch of salt ( I use Himalayan pink salt for all my cooking and baking)
- 1/2 cup (8 Tbsp.) unsalted butter
- 1 Tbsp. sugar
- 1 egg
- 1-2 Tbsp. cold water
For the berry filling:
- 2 cups fresh blueberries
- 1 cup fresh raspberries
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/4 cup corn starch
- zest of 1/2 lemon
- juice from 1/2 lemon
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 1 Tbsp. Grand Marnier liqueur or rum
- 1 Tbsp. vanilla sugar for a top
- 1/2 egg for a top
Preheat the oven to 375 F.
To make the pie dough: sift the flour, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl. Add the butter, and rub in with your fingertips or cut in with pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add the egg and cold water, use a fork to bring it together to form a soft dough. Wrap in clear film (plastic wrap) and chill for 15-30 minutes.
Meanwhile, make a berry filling. In a large bowl combine the berries and all other ingredients for a filling. Set aside.
Roll out two-thirds of the pastry on a lightly floured surface and use to line a pie baking dish. Press the pastry into the sides and trim the edge. Spread the berry filling generously and evenly over the base of the pastry case. Roll out the remaining dough into a long rectangle. Cut this int even strips with a sharp knife and arrange in a lattice pattern over the berry mixture. Brush the top of a cake with egg and sprinkle with vanilla sugar.
Bake the pie for about 35-40 minutes, or until golden brown. Leave to cool for a little before serving. Serve with a cream, if you like.