Sake Gumi

If I had a garden, I would go crazy.

Everyone thinks having a big garden invokes peace and tranquility in the mind. WRONG! It gives you a constant nagging feeling of stress and frustration. The lawn must be mown, bushes cut, apples picked, weed removed, flowers planted, birds scared away, vegetables watered... Aargh it just never gives you a break.

But once in a while you (literally) get to harvest the results of your hard labour. Blackberries are in season and I suggested to my mom that we bake a pie.


Mosquitos are very much in season right now as well - picking these berries were quite a death match. I'm still scratching myself while writing this.


The berries are of course 100% organic and poison free-- unlike my blood.


Not exactly a huge truck load of blackberries, but should be enough for a pie.


Back in the kitchen: start by washing the berries carefully-- you don't want to squish them into marmalade.


Ok, so here's an overview of the recipe:

Pie dough:
150g butter (about 11 tbsp)
250g flour (about 1 cup)
75g icing sugar (about 1/3 cup)
1 egg

Berry fill:
400g blackberries (about 2 cups)
75g shredded marzipan (about 1/3 cup)
8 crushed macaroons
1.5 tablespoon sugar

Baking time: 200˚C (about 400˚F) in 35-40 minutes.

So much butter...


Prepare 250g white flour.


And add 75 icing sugar.


This food processor deserves a medal and a senior citizen discount card - it's from 1985, can you believe that??


What machinery can you say that about these days? My new XBOX 360 controller lasted two days before it broke!

Pour everything in. Add one egg.


Blend it like there's no tomorrow.

Place the fresh dough in the fridge for one hour or more. That lets it settle and makes it easier to work with later.


Those are my dad's cans to the left by the way. If he doesn't get his cold beer at dinner, you're in serious trouble.

Paris Hilton's VIP party room table?


Roll out the cold dough.


Save a good handful for the pie thread decor.


My mom's circular pie bowl is dead in action, so we had to use this oval one which is less sexy but what can you do. Shred the marzipan for a smooth, delicious base.


Drop the berries in. So fresh!


Punish the macaroons using a bag and a rolling pin. Or sit on it if you have a big butt.


Sprinkle the crushed macaroons on top and finish off with a bit of sugar to give it that sparkle.


Finally, be creative with your hands and design the thread. We went for the classic woven look.


Smack it in the oven and bake for 35-40 min at 200˚C (about 400˚F)!

And ta-da, out comes this warm thing!


Meanwhile, my dad's certainly not having any of that silly pie. He's preparing his own favorite dessert: the cheapest store label nougat ice cream topped with whipped cream from a can and some bottled, artificial eggnog from Germany. So disgusting!


Then I'd rather have a slice of this: Freshly baked, homegrown blackberry pie with vanilla corn infused créme fraiche. Bon appetit!

Column: Skankynavia


  • I think you mean vanilla bean ;)

    That looks amazing, and very European with that marzipan.

    Craig on

  • There are so many ways to make pie sheets. Store bought, my blueberry tart way, and then there’s this traditional cold butter method. The less you touch, the more flakier the result is. When you mix them in food processor, you pulse them until barely combined, make a ball and chill, then it will make VERY flaky dough and you almost choke on the flakes. OMG, I see Choya Umeshu in the back of the fridge! I like the poopy top dough too.

    Yamahomo on

  • Wow that looks awesome. I know what you mean about the garden. Growing up in LA with a big backyard, my parents loved gardening, and what would’ve otherwise been lazy Sundays were spent pulling out weeds, planting, mowing, watering, spading, etc etc.

    Although I miss the feeling of having a backyard, that childhood experience was so traumatizing that I’m just fine in my NY apartment with nothing but a fire escape.

    Paystyle on

  • I am going to try this recipe. I might have to get creative with the berries- haven’t seen many here. Nice post.

    Bryan on

  • Paystyle: Totally agree with you. We garden-traumatized children will take a city flat any time.

    Yama: Nothing escapes your all-seeing laser eye! Yes, I brought it back from Narita Airport. It’s crazy expensive in our local Asian food store, so people rarely get to taste the fab flavours of umeshu. It’s always a hit to serve it as a dessert wine for Danes, as it’s always a new experience to them.

    Craig: yes, you’re right, not vanilla infused corn. “Korn” means seed in Danish – so maybe vanilla seed?

    Anders on

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