Pie. Just the thought of pie, sweet or savoury, makes me smile.
A pie is like a present: you get through the lovely wrapper (which is the crust) to get to the treat (the filling). At the end of it all, you're just so happy.
Pie makes me happy. And, I think I love making them more than I love eating them.
So, this weekend I made two pies. The first was a Strawberry and Apple pie with a lattice crust and the second, a Buttermilk Pie with Pine Nuts. I had no qualms making two pies at one go because pies freeze extremely well. In fact, I kinda like the taste of frozen pied that have been reheated.
The first thing to focus on is the crust. I used the same crust for both pies were the same: a basic pie crust from Martha Stewart (though most recipes are similar) that combines 11/4 cups all-purpose flour + 1/2 tsp salt + 1/2 tsp sugar, 113g butter and 4 tbsp ice cold water.
Using your hands, rub the butter into the flour (whisk in the salt and sugar into the flour first) and when it resembles coarse bread crumbs, add the water, 2 tbsp at a time and gently mix to form a dough. Shape dough into a disc, wrap in cling film and refrigerate for at least an hour. (The dough is enough for ONE 23cm pie dish).
Now, let's move on to the filling. The Apple and Strawberry Pie, I made on a whim, without a recipe to guide me. I'd made apple pies before and I figured I could just wing it.
Apple and Strawberry Pie
2 cups chopped apples (I used Fuji reds, peel off the skin!)
2 cups roughly cut strawberries.
1/2 cup granulated white sugar
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 tbsp lemon juice
pinch of salt
1/4 cup corn starch
2 tbsp unsalted butter, cut into small cubes
1 egg yolk, beaten (for the finish).
Keep aside 1/5 of the dough for the lattice. Roll the remainder of the dough so that its big enough to cover the base of your pie dish. Gently transfer and mould it onto the pie dish. Refrigerate it for about 30 mins. Roll the dough you kept aside and then cut about 10 strips, about 20 cm in length.
Preheat the oven to 200C.
To prepare the filling, simply mix all the ingredients together.
Once the crust is chilled, transfer the filling onto the crust. Now, lay the strips over the filling to form a lattice. Seal the edges together. Brush with the beaten yolk.
Bake for 20 mins and then remove it, cover the top with foil, reduce the temperature of the oven to 160C and bake for a further 15-25 mins.
3 eggs, lightly beaten
3 tbsp all purpose flour
1 cup sugar
11/2 cup buttermilk
113 gm unsalted butter, melted and cooled
1 tsp vanilla extract
Beat the eggs, sugar and flour together. Add the butter and the buttermilk, alternately, in four installments. Whisk in the vanilla, lightly.
Roll the (chilled) dough till it's big enough to cover the base of your pie dish. Gently transfer and mould it onto the pie dish. Refrigerate it for about 30 mins.
Preheat the oven to 200C.
Pour the custard into the crust and bake for 15 mins.
Cover the pie with foil, reduce the heat to 160C and continue baking for 25-30 mins or till the custard sets.