I find this very difficult to believe, but there are actually some people in my family who don’t like pie.
For me, pie is the ultimate dessert. Tender, crumbly golden brown crust. Just a little sweet and with enough salt, fresh fruit and maybe a hint of seasoning. Pie isn’t fancy and doesn’t need to be.
So who could not like it?
Once I asked my husband Ed why he didn’t eat my pie. I thought maybe it was because he grew up in a cake-and-canned-fruit-for-dessert house.
But he told me that he doesn’t like the top crust. He would eat pie if it had a streusel top.
I made those of course, but the problem with a standard, flour-based streusel top is that if you don’t eat the pie right away — like in my case, I bake a half dozen at a time when I can get good fruit — and you freeze it, then the streusel gets all soggy. And unlike regular pie-crust pie, it never bakes back crumbly and crispy. It looks awful too.
Recently I figured out a way to make a pie with a streusel type top that you can actually refrigerate or freeze and it will stay (or reheat to) crisp and crumbly: use a mixture designed for a fruit crisp. These bake properly because they usually contain ingredients (like nuts and oats) that create a firm texture.
As this one did.
I made this blueberry pie with a top crust that I’ve used for fruit crisp. This pie is the best of both worlds: a bottom crust and pie shape for those of us who adore real pie and a top crunchy streusel crust that stays crispy for those who prefer fruit crisp.
Blueberry Pie with Oat-Coconut Streusel
1 recipe Oat-Coconut Streusel (see below)
5 cups blueberries
1/2 cup sugar
5 tablespoons flour
3/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 9-inch unbaked pie crust
Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Prepare the Oat-Coconut Streusel and set aside. Mix the blueberries, sugar, flour, cinnamon, salt, and lemon juice in a large bowl. Pour the blueberry filling into the pie crust. Cover with the streusel. Bake about one hour or until top is golden brown.
1/2 cup flour
1/2 cup grated coconut
1/2 cup old fashioned oats
1/2 cup chopped nuts
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
6 tablespoons melted butter
Place the flour, coconut, oats, nuts, brown sugar and cinnamon in a bowl and toss ingredients to distribute them evenly. Pour in the melted butter. Mix until the dry the ingredients are covered with the melted butter.