I'm very apprehensive when it comes to making pies. I'm usually worried about the pastry, being it soggy, or too dry or just under baked. Nigel Slater's version turned out to be very easy to make, pleasant to handle and very tasty. It's not very sweet, which I liked a lot. I'm planning on using this pastry for other fruit - sweet cherries or custard & strawberry filling. Original recipe calls for plums and raspberries, so to make this pie more cost effective (I got plums for free) I used what i had at hand - which was a bag of mixed summer berries in my fridge. This combination worked brilliant! My plums were little tangy and their skins quite bitter, so it mixed brilliantly with sweet raspberries, strawberries and blackberries. I was worried that the pastry will be very wet, soggy as there's no blind pre-baking of the pastry case, but I shouldn't worry at all! Everything turned out perfect and the smell in the house - amazing! The result is crumbly, short pastry with juicy, soft, sweet fruit inside. Ideal dessert to finish of the meal or simply any time of the day treat with some strong coffee on the side.
How to make it...
- 750 g plums, stones removed, fruit cut into quarters
- 60 g caster sugar
- 150 g raspberries (I used mix of frozen summer berries)
- 200 g plain flour
- 120 g unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- 1 tablespoon caster sugar
- pinch of cinnamon
- 3 tablespoons chilled water
- milk, to glaze
Lightly brush a 24 cm pie dish with some butter. Put the plums in a bowl, sprinkle with sugar and leave them for about 40 minutes. Set the oven to 180 C and place metal baking sheet inside.
For the pastry: Tip the flour into a mixing bowl, add the butter and rub into the flour using your fingertips, until it resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Stir in caster sugar and cinnamon, then mix in as much water as you need to get nice, soft, manageable dough - it shouldn't be dry or sticky. Pat the dough into flattened ball, wrap in kitchen paper and put into the fridge to rest for about 20 minutes.
Cut off about two-thirds of the pastry and roll it out on a floured board, should be little bigger than your pie dish. Line the pie dish with the pastry, patching up any breaks or holes. Roll out the rest of the pastry and cut it into strips about 2 cm wide.
Remove the plums with a draining spoon, leaving the juice behind in the bowl. Put the plums into the lined pie dish, then scatter the berries among them. Brush the edge of the pastry with a little milk then lay the cut strips of pastry in a lattice fashion across the fruit. Brush lightly with milk, place on the hot baking sheet and bake for about 45 minutes, till the pastry is golden and the fruit is bubbling. Remove from the oven, brush with some of the reserved juice, then return to the oven for 5 minutes more. If you like serve with cream.
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