Author Greg Patent spent 20 years perfecting this pie. If huckleberries are unavailable, wild blueberries may be substituted.
FOR THE PASTRY
- 2 1⁄4 cups flour
- 1⁄2 tsp. salt
- 8 Tbsp. butter, chilled and cut into pieces
- 8 Tbsp. vegetable shortening
- 1 1⁄2 tsp. cider vinegar
FOR THE FILLING
- 1 cup plus 1 tbsp. sugar
- 4 Tbsp. quick-cooking tapioca
- 1 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 1⁄2 tsp. freshly grated nutmeg
- Pinch salt
- 5 cups fresh or partially thawed frozen huckleberries stemmed
- 2 Tbsp. fresh lemon juice
- 2 Tbsp. butter, chilled and cut into pieces
- For the pastry: Sift together flour and salt into a large bowl. Using a pastry cutter or 2 table knives, work butter into flour until mixture is flecked with pea-size pieces of butter. Add shortening and work into flour mixture until it is flecked with pea-size pieces of shortening. Combine vinegar and 6 tbsp. ice water in a bowl, then stir into flour mixture 1 tbsp. at a time, mixing until dough holds together. Form into a rough ball, then divide dough into 2 balls, one slightly larger than the other, wrap each in plastic, and refrigerate for 2 hours.
- For the filling: Combine 1 cup of the sugar, tapioca, cinnamon, nutmeg, and salt in a large bowl. Add huckleberries and lemon juice, gently toss, and set aside for 15 minutes.
- Put a baking sheet on oven rack in lower third of oven. Position another oven rack in middle of oven. Preheat oven to 450º. Roll out larger dough ball onto a lightly floured surface into a 12″ round and fit into a 9″ pie plate. Fill with huckleberry filling and scatter with butter. Roll smaller dough ball into a 10″ circle, place on top of filling, then fold edge under and crimp. Brush pastry with water, make 5 slits in top pastry for steam to escape, and sprinkle with remaining 1 tbsp. sugar. Bake pie on baking sheet until pastry begins to brown, 20-25 minutes. Transfer pie to middle rack, reduce oven temperature to 350º, and bake until pastry is deep goldenbrown, about 50 minutes more. Set pie aside to cool completely.