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Blackberry Raspberry Pie by Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven

Baking is a touchstone of culture.  In ancient and medieval times, ovens were rare.  The time and expense of constructing a wood burning oven meant baking was an act more common in the homes of the wealthy and nobility.  Dr. Sara Pennell from the University of Roehampton explained, “This was subsistence-focused baking, with an emphasis on bread and pies.  If you were wealthy, your baked goods would be rich in exotic colour.  If you were poor, you were grateful if you could afford meat for your pie.”  As economic and social freedom was expanded over time, the living conditions improved for many people across the globe.  Pie making, cakes, and pastries became extremely popular by the 1700s.  

Better quality flour and the availability of more diverse ingredients revolutionized the art of cookery.  The availability and increased quality of flour was essential in the transformation of cooking across the world.  Knowing how to judge the standard of flour is an essential kitchen skill.  According to Ken Qual of The Journal of Science of Food and Agriculture, the attributes to consider when choosing flour are appearance—crust color, crumb size, flavor—taste, wheaty smell, aroma, and texture—mouthfeel, crumb stability, softness, grittiness, and lightness.  

When we consider baking at the ingredient level, the quality of those chief players is as important as in any living system, family, organization, or environment.  The source and standard of baking products affects the entire outcome of the pie, cake, tart, or bread.  As with cooking and everything else in life, quality matters.  An analogy worth remembering.

None of the science nor history matters as much as the baker.  We all come to the kitchen with various levels of cookery skills, experience, and knowledge.  We come to the table with a multitude of perspectives, passions, and interests.  Whatever our skills and for whomever we are baking, making family and friends happy with your cooking or the gift of baked goods, pies, cookies, and more creates good times and memories.

The recipe for this raspberry blackberry pie includes the best quality ingredients and a time-tested flaky crust.  If you are making your own pies or purchasing pies for loved ones, the ingredients matter.  The dough must be properly mixed, rolled, and evenly formed into a round.  The dough must then be carefully transferred into the pie dish.  Next, the dough must be docked and blind baked.  The filling must be gently mixed.  Then, transferred to the blind baked crust.  The topping is then crumbled on the crown of the pie during that baking process.  After baking, let the pie cool before enjoying.  The flavor of the pie develops more over night and can be enjoyed the next day.

As cookbook author and chef Marion Cunningham declared, "In many ways, home cooking is even more creative than what chefs do, because we improvise.  We also have the fun of cooking together with our children or with friends.  And there is a satisfaction of giving pleasure and comfort to others with something we have cooked ourselves.”  Baking and cooking pies or other goods for family and friends is also fun and an excellent way to demonstrate gratitude.  

Many readers rely on Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven as a source for how-to and where-to regarding cookery, culture, and community.  Thank you to all those that have been loyal supporters and fans.  The business originated when I started selling homemade chocolates around age 10.  Jesse Bluma at Pointe Viven liberates taste in cookery, culture, and community, provides gourmet goods made with organic ingredients, inspired by the culinary worlds of California, Central, and South America, and engages in a community of customers and readers with lifestyle content, reviews, and expertise.

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Credit:  History Extra, Quail - 1991 - Journal of the Science of Food and Agriculture - Wiley Online Library

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