Recipe: Himalayan blackberry custard pie

To keep things simple and honor the deliciousness of the theme ingredient, I decided to make a blackberry custard pie.


  • 1 9″ Pie crust (you can buy one frozen or make it yourself)
  • 2 cups vanilla custard (directions below)
  • 2 cups Himalayan blackberries


  1. Bake pie crust at 450⁰F for ~20min until it is golden brown
  2. Allow to cool
  3. When the pie crust is cool to the touch, pour in refrigerated vanilla custard
  4. Completely cover the custard with fresh and thoroughly washed Himalayan blackberries
Photo courtesy of Sheina Sim

Vanilla custard ingredients:

  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • ¾ cup evaporated milk + ¼ cup water (hot but not boiling)
  • 2 Tablespoons butter
  • 2 Tablespoons flour
  • 2 egg yolks
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract

Vanilla custard instructions:

  1. Combine sugar and flour
  2. Cream in egg yolks
  3. Slowly add hot milk while stirring over low to medium heat
  4. Add butter as it gets hot and thickens
  5. Add vanilla
  6. Remove from heat when it reaches desired consistency
  7. Allow to cool and then chill in the refrigerator

When I started this project, I had the goal of baking a pake (a pie baked into a cake) to pay homage to a fellow science blogger, but my execution was poor and though the pake turned out delicious, it was horribly ugly.


A self-proclaimed modern day nomad, I was born in the Philippines, grew up in southern California—lived all over really—and now I do research as a graduate student in Indiana and the Pacific Northwest. Professionally speaking, my current area of focus is speciation and ecological genetics and genomics, and a common theme in my various projects over the years is evolution in agricultural systems. As a recipient of a GLOBES—an interdisciplinary program funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) through the Integrative Graduate Education, Research, and Traineeship grant (IGERT) —fellowship, I have received training which has better enabled me to view and ponder topics without my science hat on. I take great joy in eating, cooking, and experiencing nature through various activities. I love to travel and anticipate many local and international invasivore field trips! Though my research interests do not directly involve the study of invasive species, I have had my fair share of negative encounters with environmentally noxious organisms in the midst of doing field research. I carry around a machete with which to combat my gnarly “Himalayan” foes, and my machete and I have raised more than a few eyebrows. Apart from my personal vendetta against these deliciously juicy pests, I feel that there are great advantages to linking our awareness of the natural world to our culture, and Invasivore is an avenue to do just that. I feel that an increase in general knowledge of invasive species will be of great benefit to the field of invasive species and conservation biology. Knowledge and awareness will lead to action, and action will lead to results!

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