This is the pie Brits grew up with, combining the comforting winter flavours of tart blackberries with sweet Bramley apples. Blackberry foraging has been going on for around 8000 years, and is still a pastime enjoyed in many woodlands around Britain, with the plucked fruits making their way into many pies and puddings. While Bramleys aren’t widely available here, Granny Smiths make an ideal substitute.
- 300 g (2 cups) plain flour, sifted
- 60 g pure icing sugar, sifted
- 2 tsp ground ginger
- 125 g cold unsalted butter, chopped
- 2 eggs
- 2 tbsp cold milk
- thick vanilla custard, to serve
Apple and blackberry filling
- 750 g Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, halved, sliced
- 110 g (½ cup) caster sugar, plus
- 1 tbsp extra, to sprinkle
- 1 vanilla bean, split, seeds scraped
- 600 g blackberries
- 1 tbsp glacé ginger, finely chopped
- 2 tbsp vanilla custard powder
Oven temperatures are for conventional; if using fan-forced (convection), reduce the temperature by 20˚C. | We use Australian tablespoons and cups: 1 teaspoon equals 5 ml; 1 tablespoon equals 20 ml; 1 cup equals 250 ml. | All herbs are fresh (unless specified) and cups are lightly packed. | All vegetables are medium size and peeled, unless specified. | All eggs are 55-60 g, unless specified.
Cooling time 30 minutes
Chilling time 1 hour
You will need a 24 cm pie dish for this recipe.
Place flour, icing sugar and ground ginger in a food processor and pulse to combine. Add butter and pulse until mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add 1 lightly beaten egg and milk and pulse to combine.
Turn out mixture onto a clean work surface and knead until pastry just comes together. Enclose in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
Meanwhile, to make apple and blackberry filling, place apples, sugar, vanilla bean and seeds and 1 tbsp water in a saucepan over medium heat. Cook, stirring, for 15 minutes or until apples are softened. Add blackberries and cook, stirring occasionally, for 5 minutes. Place a colander over a bowl, then drain fruit mixture, reserving juice. Cool fruit mixture completely, then stir through glacé ginger.
Preheat oven to 180°C. Reserve one-quarter of the pastry, then roll out remainder between 2 sheets of baking paper to 3 mm-thick. Line a 24 cm pie dish with pastry, trimming overhanging pastry.
Scatter custard powder over pastry base, then spoon cooled filling on top; remove and discard vanilla bean, if desired. Sprinkle with 2 tbsp reserved juice.
Roll out remaining pastry between 2 sheets of baking paper to 3 mm-thick. Cut into long 2 cm-wide strips, then arrange strips evenly over fruit to create a lattice pattern. Trim overhanging pastry. Lightly beat remaining egg, brush over pastry then scatter with extra 1 tbsp caster sugar.
Bake for 40 minutes or until pastry is golden and cooked through. Serve warm with thick vanilla custard.
• Leftover apple and blackberry juice can be used to make a drink – serve with ice, soda water and gin, if desired.
Photography Brett Stevens
As seen in Feast magazine, February 2014, Issue 28.