A couple of weekends ago I had the glorious pleasure of returning to CJ’s Farm. I had been there once before, last fall to pick the most beautiful heirloom pumpkins. This time it was boysenberries. This triple cross between a European raspberry, blackberry and loagnberry is not so easy to find here in Los Angeles. They are around the Hollywood and Santa Monica Farmer’s Markets for a very brief period if you’re lucky to find them at all. And sometimes when you have that kind of luck, they are the worst type of sour and just awful.
Imagine my excitement when I learned that CJ’s was not only growing boysenberries, but was opening their wonderful farm to the public for u-pick. The ripe boysenberries were deliciously tart yet still sweet. They were the best I’ve ever had. I picked the biggest option available because I already knew I wanted to bake them into a pie.
And what a wonderful pie they made.
Violet Boysenberry Pie
two pie crusts; use your favorite recipe
5 c boysenberries
scant 2/3 c unbleached cane sugar
zest of one meyer lemon
1 tbsp lemon juice
1 tbsp violet liqueur
1 1/2 tsp vanilla paste
1 tbsp dried violets (if you have big pieces, grind in mortar + pestle or spice grinder)
2 tbsp arrowroot powder
Preheat oven to 425°F. In a mixing bowl, combine all ingredients. Roll out your bottom crust. Pour the filling into the crust. Place in the fridge while rolling out your top crust. Cover the pie with top crust, or make lattice. Remember to cut slits for ventilation if using the whole top crust. Bake at 425°F for 20 min. Lower the heat to 350°F and bake an additional 35-45 min.
Also, worth mentioning was the delicious lettuce I also bought. They harvested it for me while I picked berries and it was the freshest, most flavorful lettuce I think I’ve ever had. I can’t wait to go back to CJ’s for cantaloupe. 🙂
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