Can’t decide between blueberry pie or lemon cream pie? Then be like me and try this Fresh Blueberry and Lemon Cream Pie; it’s divine!
When I posted this Blackberry Bramble cocktail the other day, I lamented how some want to rush the advent of Fall and I’m just the opposite. Stay summer, stay. Please? Well, it’s not just about my summer cocktails but some favorite summer foods too. I love to barbecue and I love the incredible selection of fruits available during summer and now that I’ve made this pie, I want more time to make it again!
Luckily our group for Progressive Eats is on the same page and this month features recipes to help you celebrate the last long weekend of the summer, Labor Day! We’ve got a great mix of recipes from appetizer to desserts and hosting this month is Jane from The Heritage Cook.
My intent when I did this was not even planning ahead for a holiday weekend, it was simply to make dessert for company. I had blueberries and I had lemons and I vacillated between the two so in a moment of not being able to be decisive, I decided to do both! I was having company arrive in town for a short visit and I wanted to offer my guests a homemade dessert and thought either of these choices would be good.
Timing started to become critical though and I wasn’t sure how I was going to get the pies done and the requisite photos taken of both of them so I decided to punt and combine the two together. With all humility I have to say it was a genius idea! I’ve always loved lemon and blueberry combined in cocktails and I always put lemon in my blueberry pies so this was not a huge stretch. But it was so good. The smooth lemon filling with cream cheese was the perfect component to combine with a layer of fresh berries cooked just enough to develop a glaze.
My visitors were special and deserved a dessert worthy of our time together. I had received a message from my dear friend Jan several weeks ago, wondering if I would be home on the 18th of August. She and her husband Pat were heading to Caspar, Wyoming from their home in Tucson to view the solar eclipse and wanted to travel through Denver on their way and spend the night. Truth is, if I had any plans on the books, they were revised. I’ve known Jan and Pat Timlick since our children were born about the same time when we lived in Raleigh, NC. That seems a lifetime ago and we’ve only managed to see each other one other time in the 30 odd years since I left North Carolina and they headed to the Pacific Northwest.
We stayed in touch over the years just enough to catch up once before when they were heading through Denver but that was a very long time ago when our girls were still quite young so it had been a long time. Through the magic of Facebook Jan and I have reconnected and are in touch regularly now but I was still excited to see them in person. Pat and Jan love to travel with their adorable ‘Bambi’ Airstream and arrived with truck and camper and their wonderful dog Chase.
Thank you Pat for indulging us and letting Jan and I ramble for hours on end. No, an overnight visit is simply not long enough but we gave it our best shot and tried to catch up. Jan and are were best buds when our children were little. We learned to navigate child rearing, gardening and canning together and those are days I will never forget. We also settled into a rhythm as if decades had not been between those times when we could just sit and chat, or rather, run after the girls and chat! We have to do this more often, period!
I still made two pies, just two of the same pies. They were perfection; that combination of lemon and berries was meant to be. Pop in the refrigerator for a couple of hours or overnight and finish with some whipped cream. Oh my YUM!
You know the drill around here right? After the Timlick’s left and doggone it, actually took their sweet dog Chase with them, I put the word out on the Facebook group for my street that there was pie. It took no time at all before there was no pie. I am having a barbecue for the neighbors here in a couple of weeks. These will be made again and shared again and I urge you to do the same for your Labor Day get togethers. Or for your family. Or let’s be honest, make one just for you and call your neighbors too…or not!
Fresh Blueberry and Lemon Cream Pie
For the Lemon Cream Cheese Filling
- 3 large eggs
- 1 cup granulated sugar
- 1 Tbsp freshly grated lemon zest (about 1 lemon)
- 3/4 cup freshly squeezed lemon juice (about 3 lemons)
- 12 ounces cream cheese, softened to room temperature
For the Blueberry Filling
- 3 Tbsp cornstarch
- 1/8 tsp salt
- 1/4 cup cold water
- 5 cups fresh blueberries, divided
- 1 Tbsp butter
- 1 Tbsp lemon juice
For the Whipped Cream
- 1 cup heavy whipping cream
- 1 Tbsp powdered sugar
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 2 tsp lemon zest
- lemon slices (optional)
Make the Lemon Filling
- Use a double boiler or place a heatproof bowl over a pan of lightly simmering water to create one.
- In a mixer, beat the eggs until thick and fluffy, about 2 to 3 minutes. With the mixer running, slowly add the sugar, then the lemon juice and lemon zest. Scrape the mixture into the top of your double boiler and stir constantly until it forms a thick custard; 6-8 minutes. The custard should coat the back of a spoon; you will know it's done when you pull your finger through the custard on the spoon and the indentation will remain. Remove the top of your double boiler from the water and let cool to almost room temperature.
- Rinse your mixing bowl and dry. Add the cream cheese, beating on medium high speed until it is completely soft and smooth, about 3 minutes.
- Reduce the mixer speed to medium and gradually add the cooled lemon custard to the cream cheese, beating until smooth and fully combined so that no white streaks remain. Pour the cream cheese into the baked pastry shell. Refrigerate the pie for two hours.
Make the Blueberry Filling
- In a saucepan over medium heat, combine sugar, cornstarch, salt and water until smooth. Add 3 cups blueberries. Bring to a boil; cook and stir for 2 minutes or until thickened and bubbly.
- Remove from the heat. Add butter, lemon juice and remaining berries; stir until butter is melted. Cool.
- Remove the pies with lemon cream filling from the refrigerator and gently spoon the blueberry filling over the lemon cream filling that has been chilling for two hours. Chill for at least 2 more hours or overnight.
Prepare the whipped cream (No more than four hours before serving)
- In large mixing bowl or the bowl of a standing mixer fitted with the whisk attachment, beat the cream in the bowl of an electric mixer fitted with a whisk attachment over medium speed. When it starts to thicken, add the powdered sugar and vanilla, increase the mixer speed to high, and continue to beat until soft peaks form. (Do not over beat).
- Dollop on top of the pie or use decorating tips and top the whipped cream with lemon slices and/or lemon zest.
Labor Day Holiday Weekend Favorites
- Pineapple Mint Shrub Cocktail from Mother Would Know
- Punjabi Samosa from Spice Roots
- Grilled Tandoori Chicken with Cucumber Yogurt Sauce (Gluten-Free) from The Heritage Cook
- Summer Tomato Peach Panzanella from Pastry Chef Online
- Vanilla Bean Bourbon Plum Bundt Cake from The Redhead Baker
- Chocolate Sheet Cake with Cocoa Icing from That Skinny Chick Can Bake
- Fresh Blueberry and Lemon Cream Pie from Creative Culinary (You’re Here!)
If you’re unfamiliar with the concept, progressive dinner participants go from house to house, enjoying a different course at each location. With Progressive Eats, a theme is chosen each month, members share recipes suitable for a delicious meal or party, and you can hop from blog to blog to check them out.