Every month or so, I partner with one of my favorite local sites, Brooklyn Based, to bring you an exclusive song by a Brooklyn band, recorded at Nadim Issa’s state-of-the-art recording studio in Gowanus, Let ‘Em In Music. Then, I create a recipe with — or inspired by — the featured artist. This month’s mp3 is Hilly Eye, performing a brand-new track, “Robbie’s Song” (download the free mp3 and read my feature on them here), and here’s the lemon blueberry pie and blueberry sauce I made with the band. All photos by Dominick Mastrangelo.
Lemon blueberry pie with blueberry sauce and whipped cream
When I asked Hilly Eye’s Amy Klein (who you might recognize as the former guitarist/violinist for New Jersey punk band Titus Andronicus) what kind of food she wanted to make for BB Songs, she mentioned that a fan had mentioned “Hilly Eye berry pie” on the band’s Facebook page, and neither of us had made pie before, so we decided to go for it. She said the song she and bandmate Catherine Tung would be recording had a lot of triumphant guitar details; triumphant made me think of winning, which made me think of blue ribbons and therefore blueberries. Hilly Eye’s music has elements of sweetness in the vocal melodies (especially in their new track “Robbie’s Song”), but they also make a lot of noise and distortion, hence the strong, sour flavor of lemon that dominates the taste of the pie. Also, can I just say that this pie is amazing?! It tastes more or less like a lemon bar, but with graham cracker crust instead of shortbread. Top it with blueberry sauce and whipped cream, and you’re good to go.
Graham cracker crust
Adapted, just slightly, from Momofuku Milk Bar. Yes, I know milk powder is an obscure ingredient, but if you’re like me and own this book, you might also have an entire stash of weird ingredients, some of them in mass quantities (like milk powder), and if you’re like me, you want to use them up with any chance you get! That said, any graham cracker crust recipe or even a premade crust will work just fine.
1 1/2 cups graham cracker crumbs
1/4 cup milk powder
2 tablespoons sugar
2 teaspoons powdered ginger
3/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons butter, melted
1/4 cup heavy cream
• With your hands, mix the graham cracker crumbs, milk powder, sugar and salt until evenly distributed.
• In a separate bowl, whisk together the cream and melted butter. Add to the dry ingredients and toss again to distribute. As you continue mixing, the butter should start to hold the crumbs together when you squeeze it tightly together. If it’s too dry, you can add a little bit more melted butter.
• Press into a pie plate and even the crust out the best you can, pressing it all the way up the sides of the plate (ours looked very homemade, that’s for sure!).
Lemon blueberry pie filling
Adapted from Annie’s Eats
1 1/2 cups sugar
3/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 1/2 tablespoons lemon zest
1/8 teaspoon salt
1 cup blueberries (fresh or pre-frozen and thawed), pureed w/ 3 tablespoons of water
3 egg whites
1/2 cup lemon juice
• Preheat oven to 350 degrees Fahrenheit.
• In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, lemon zest and salt.
• Add the egg and egg whites and whisk until well combined.
• Whisk in the blueberry puree and lemon juice until smooth.
• Pour the mixture into the graham cracker crust and bake for about 45 minutes, rotating the pie around halfway through (so the crust doesn’t burn), until the center of the pie doesn’t jiggle when gently shaken. While the pie is baking, make the blueberry sauce and whipped cream (below). Cool pie to room temperature before serving — but if you’re impatient, stick it in the freezer to speed it up!
Adapted, slightly, from Pinch of Yum. Any leftover sauce is amazing mixed into oatmeal or yogurt…
1 1/2 cups blueberries (fresh or frozen), separated
1/2 cup water
1/4 cup sugar
3 teaspoons cornstarch dissolved into 1 1/2 tablespoons water
1/4 teaspoon vanilla
2 teaspoons finely chopped mint
• Combine 3/4 cup blueberries, water and sugar in a small saucepan and cook over medium-high heat until mixture comes to a low boil (blueberries should start to break apart).
• Add water-cornstarch mixture and mint, and bring to a rolling boil. Turn heat down and simmer for a few more minutes, until sauce reaches desired consistency. Remove from heat, mix in the rest of the blueberries, and let cool.
1 cup heavy whipping cream
3 tablespoons sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla
In the bowl of a stand mixer, or with a handheld electric mixer, beat cream until it starts to thicken up and become fluffy. Add in sugar and vanilla, and beat until it reaches your desired consistency.