Who ate all the pies? My year of pies ~ Pickled cherry pie

This is a wonderful pie recipe to use your pickled or preserved cherries from the summer time. If you don’t have any or can not get your hands on any, my recipe is below – perfect for all of you in the Northern hemisphere coming into summer but sadly down under you may have to wait until the winter has passed. You could substitute the cherries with other fruit if you can’t wait!

Pie crust

Pie crust
2 ½ cups flour
1tsp sugar
1 cup butter, cold and grated
Pinch salt
¼ to ½ cup cold water
1 cup almond flakes for top
Small handful nuts or more almonds for blind baking
1 tbs honey

In a food processor pulse the flour, sugar and salt. Add the butter and pulse until it resembles bread crumbs. Add part of the water and pulse again. Add enough water so as when you squeeze the mix it hold together. I suggest doing the water a tablespoon at a time as you do not want to over mix.

Turn out the dough onto some cling wrap and make the dough into a disk shape. Place in the fridge for an hour.

Remove the pastry from the fridge and roll out so it fits into your pie dish enough to hang over the sides. Wrap the pastry around your rolling pin and unroll over the dish, gently pushing the pastry into the sides of the dish. Prick the pastry a few times around the dish with a fork. Any leftover pastry can be frozen. Now preheat your oven to 180.C and put your pie case back in the fridge until ready to use.

Blind bake your pie case by placing some baking paper on the inside of the crust and filling it with some almonds and a drizzle the honey which you can use on the top of the pie later. Bake for 10-15 minutes or until the crust begins to go golden brown. If any of the pastry puffs prick with a fork a little more.

Once the pie crust is ready remove and fill with the cherry filling. Don’t put too much of the liquid in or it will go soggy. If you would like a sweeter filling, sprinkle the cherries with some brown sugar at this point. Now cover the filling with the flaked almonds and some of the blind baked ones too for texture. Bake in the oven for a further 10-15 minutes or until golden brown. Serve with creme fraiche or cream.

Pickled Cherries
1 kg cherries
6 strips orange zest
350 g (1 1/2 cups) caster sugar
500 ml (2 cups) white wine vinegar
180 ml (3/4 cup) water
10 cloves
2 cm piece of fresh ginger, smashed
2 cinnamon sticks
6 cardamon pods, bruised

Wash the cherries and remove the stems and pips. Keep the cherries as whole as possible. Combine all of the ingredients except the cherries in a saucepan, bring to the boil, then simmer for 20 minutes. Add the cherries and cook for 10–15 minutes, or until tender. If not using in the pie, place into sterilised jars and stock up for the winter.

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