Buttermilk pie is exceedingly popular in Texas and the rest of the South. Lest you think it sounds strange, we encourage you to give it a chance, because this is a beautifully balanced custard with the tang of buttermilk and a hint of lemon zest and vanilla.
Buttermilk Pie with Raspberries
A handful of fresh raspberries makes the perfect counterpoint to the richness of the pie, but any tart-sweet fruit would be delicious. Try blackberry or rhubarb compote or sliced fresh strawberries and whipped cream.
For the crust:
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/4 tsp. kosher salt
1/2 tsp. sugar (optional)
7 Tbs. very cold unsalted butter, cut into cubes
5 Tbs. ice water, plus more if needed
For the filling:
1/2 cup unsalted butter, at soft room temperature
1 cup granulated sugar
1/4 cup firmly packed light brown sugar
3 large eggs, beaten
2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
Pinch of kosher salt
1 cup buttermilk
1 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
1/2 tsp. finely grated lemon zest
2 cups raspberries
Confectioners’ sugar for sprinkling (optional)
In the bowl of a food processor, stir together the flour, salt and sugar, if using. Sprinkle the butter over the top and pulse for a few seconds, or just until the butter is slightly broken up into the flour but still in visible pieces. Evenly sprinkle the water over the flour mixture, then process just until the mixture starts to come together. Dump the dough into a large lock-top plastic bag, and press into a flat disk. Refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes or up to 1 day.
On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a circle about 13 inches in diameter and 1⁄8 inch thick. Line a 9-inch pie pan with the dough. Trim the edges so they extend about 1⁄2 inch beyond the pan (don’t worry if the dough isn’t completely even). Tuck the dough under itself to create a rim. Use your fingers or a fork to make a decorative rim. Refrigerate the pie shell for about 20 minutes.
Position a rack in the middle of the oven and preheat to 400°F. Line the pie shell with foil and fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake until the dough starts to look dry, about 15 minutes. Remove the foil and weights and bake until the crust is very lightly golden, about 5 minutes. Remove from the oven and reduce the oven temperature to 350°F.
In the bowl of a mixer fitted with the paddle attachment, beat the butter and sugars on medium speed until lightened, about 3 minutes. Beat in the eggs. Stir in the flour, salt, buttermilk, vanilla, and lemon zest. Pour the filling into the shell. Bake until the top is golden brown and the custard has set, about 45 minutes. Let cool completely, then pile the raspberries on top before serving. Dust with confectioners’ sugar, if you like. Makes one 9-inch pie.
For more great rolls and other baking recipes be sure to check out our latest book, Williams-Sonoma Home Baked Comfort.