The arrival of June and long, warm summer days herald the beginning of berry season, and we are in luck! Among the baskets brimming with vine ripened blackberries, raspberries, and strawberries at farmers market, you will occasionally find some of the most desirable, lesser-known berry crops grown by a small number of local producers.
Tayberries are one of the favorite varietals I look for (but don’t always find) around this time each year.
A hybrid marriage between the red raspberry and blackberry, tayberries are a sumptuous treat that are unparalleled for jam making, tarts or pie. The intense, sweet-tart flavor of this fruit is reminiscent of boysenberries, but more nuanced and unique. They are exceptionally delicate, which renders them difficult to pack and ship commercially, so you won’t find them in grocery stores. The extra TLC required to transport them to farmers market intact can carry a hefty price tag (I paid $9 for one pint), but this exquisite variety is worth the splurge.
- 2 cups fresh tayberries
- 1/4 cup organic cane sugar
- 1 1/2 teaspoons fresh lemon juice
- 2-3 tablespoons arrowroot (a natural thickener; amount depends on the juiciness of the berries)
- 1 tablespoon butter, cut into pieces
- 1 egg
- 1 tablespoon water
- Single pie crust recipe or prepared frozen roll-out pie crust.
- 1 tablespoon Turbinado sugar
1. Heat oven to 425 degrees.
2. Roll out pie crust to a 1/4″ thickness and place on a parchment paper-lined baking sheet.
3. In a medium bowl, gently toss the tayberries, sugar, arrowroot and lemon juice together until blended.
4. Spoon the mixture into the center of the crust leaving a 2″ perimeter of dough around the edge.
5. Fold the edges of the crust inward, overlapping over each other as you work your way around the circle, and leaving an open “window” of fruit in the middle. It’s OK if it’s not perfect!
6. Dot the berries with small chunks of butter
7. In a small bowl, whisk together the egg and water until blended. Use a pastry brush to distribute the egg wash on the crust and finish with a sprinkle of Turbinado sugar.
8. Bake on the center oven rack for about 20 minutes, or until the crust is a light golden brown.
Remove from the oven and cool before transferring to a serving plate. Slice and serve plain or topped with vanilla ice cream!