1. Heat oven to 450 degrees F. Line bottom and sides of a 9-inch square baking pan, cutting dough into pieces as needed to patch crust. Trim dough to leave ½-inch overhang. (This way you will have plenty of crust to fold back down as you finish the pie.) Press firmly on seams to seal completely, to hold in the delicious bubbling filling as it bakes.
2. To prepare the filling, combine sugar and flour in a large bowl, combine vanilla and water. Add blackberries to bowl and toss gently to coat evenly with sugar-flour mixture. Pour vanilla mixture over berries, toss to combine, pour into baking pan, and scatter butter evenly over berries.
3. To make a quick lattice top, cut remaining pastry into fourteen long strips, each about 1 inch wide. Drape seven strips over berries in one direction, so that you have an inch or so of overhang past the edge of the pan. Drape remaining pastry strips at right angles to the first in a crisscross design.
4. Dip your fingers in water and dampen underside of the end of each strip. Press each strip against the crust, sealing it firmly against pastry-covered side of the pan.
5. Fold top edges of piecrust up and over edge of the pan, enclosing and covering the strips and just touching the berries. Press to seal against the sides of the pan. To seal the crust, you can pinch the dough into a crimped pattern, or press it flat against the sides of the baking pan with the back of a fork, making a design with the tines.
6. Place baking pan on a baking sheet to catch spills, place in center of the oven, reduce heat to 425 degrees F, and bake for 15 minutes. Reduce heat to 350 degrees F and continue baking until the filling is juicy and bubbling up through the pastry strips, and the crust is golden brown, 50 minutes or longer. Place the pie on a cooling rack or a folded kitchen towel to cool. Serve warm or at room temperature.
You can use a deep-dish 9-inch pie pan with excellent results. Frozen blackberries work fine here, if you can’t manage to pick more than you can eat before arriving back in the summertime kitchen. The lattice top lets the beautiful berry filling shine through but use a sheet of pastry for a double-crust pie if you’re pressed for time.
Basic Butter and Shortening Pie Dough
Makes enough for two 9-inch pies
You can make this dough up to 4 days ahead and chill until ready to use.
2½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons butter, chilled, cut into ½-inch chunks
¾ cup vegetable shortening, chilled
8-10 tablespoons ice-cold water
1. Combine flour, salt and sugar in a large bowl. Using a pastry cutter or 2 forks, cut the butter and shortening into the flour mixture until it is crumbly.
2. Sprinkle in water a tablespoon at a time, folding in with a rubber spatula, just to moisten, until dough begins clumping together.
3. Gather dough together and turn out onto a floured work surface. Fold dough over itself 6-8 times, divide in half, and flatten into disks. Wrap in plastic wrap and chill for at least 2 hours or up to 4 days.
4. Roll out on a floured work surface to size needed.
Photos by Cindie