Period Living

Nice as pie

LATTICE-TOPPED CHERRY PIE

I think this is one of my favourite pies of all – it is so simple and is best made with luscious Morello cherries picked straight off the tree. Serve with cream or vanilla ice cream.

SERVES 6

FOR THE AMERICAN CREAM CHEESE PASTRY:

• 300g plain flour
• 2 tbsp icing sugar
• Large pinch of salt
• 175g unsalted butter, chilled and diced
• 175g Philadelphia cream cheese
• 4–6 tbsp milk, chilled, plus extra to glaze

FOR THE CHERRY FILLING:

• 3 x 350g packs frozen pitted Morello cherries (or 1kg, drained weight, canned Morello cherries)
• 200g caster sugar, plus extra for sprinkling
• ½ tsp ground cinnamon or a good pinch of allspice
• Freshly squeezed juice of one lemon
• 5 tbsp cornflour
• A 23cm metal or enamel pie plate
• Baking sheet lined with non-stick baking parchment

1. For the pastry, sift the flour into a large mixing bowl with the icing sugar and salt. Rub in the butter and cream cheese until the mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs. Add enough of the milk to mix to a soft dough. Gather up the dough to form a ball and knead very briefly until smooth. Divide into two pieces, then wrap and chill both portions in the fridge for at least one hour.

2. For the filling, mix the cherries with all of the remaining ingredients and leave to stand for 20 minutes, then stir once more. Preheat the oven to 220°C/425°F/Gas 7.

On a lightly floured surface, roll out half of the pastry and use it to line the pie plate.

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