Quick and easy fruit pie

This recipe really is so easy. I know this because my 5 year old has made it several times! I made tonight as a quick pudding for dinner because I had some fruit which needed using up. You can fill your pie with pretty much any fruit you like. The original recipe was just for cherries but tonight I mixed cherries with some nectarines which were getting over-ripe. You could use peaches and raspberries or blackberries and pears.

I made the pastry from scratch for this pie but that’s just because I enjoy doing this. For speed and to make this even more simple, just use shop bought shortcrust pastry. You can even buy it ready rolled to save even more time!

If you want to make your own pastry, sieve 8oz plain flour into a bowl. Add in 4oz cold butter or margarine. Cut the fat into pieces in the flour using a table knife. Using the tips of your fingers, rub the fat into the flour until it resembles fine breadcrumbs. Make a well in the centre and pour in a tablespoon or so of cold water. With your knife, start stirring the crumbs into the water. Continue until the mixture starts to form large lumps – you may need to add a little extra water but do this in very small amounts or you will end up with wet pastry. Now use your hands to bring the pastry together into a ball. Don’t knead the pastry or it will become tough. Wrap in clingflim and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.

What you will need for your pie:

  • Fruit of your choice.
  • Pastry (either home-made or shop bought – see above).
  • 4 tablespoons of demerara sugar (or normal caster sugar).
  • A handful of porridge oats.
  • 1 beaten egg or a little milk to glaze your pie.

Pre-heat your oven to 200 degrees centigrade.

Prepare the fruit filling. For my pie, I sliced 2 nectarines and de-stoned a small punnet of cherries. Place your fruit into a bowl and sprinkle over a couple of tablespoons of the demerara sugar (if you don’t have this, just use normal sugar). Set the fruit and sugar aside while you get the pastry ready.

To make the pie base, roll out your pastry into a rough circle on a floured work surface. It should be a few millimetres thick. If you are using pre-rolled pastry, cut out a rough circle. Grease a baking tray or oven-proof dish. Place your pastry circle onto the tray or dish. Sprinkle the porridge oats over the centre of the pastry, leaving space around the edges.

Sprinkle the oats over the pastry.

Sprinkle the oats over the pastry.

Now tip the fruit you prepared earlier on top of the oats. Again, leave space around the edge of the pastry circle.

Place the fruit over the oats.

Place the fruit over the oats.

Brush the edge of the pastry circle with some of the beaten egg or milk. This will act as your glue for the next stage.

Start gathering the pastry into pleats over the edge of the fruit. It really doesn’t matter how neat this is as it’s meant to look rustic (that’s my excuse anyway!). You will be left with an open top to the middle of the pie – it is meant to be like this!

Start gathering the pastry in pleats.

Start gathering the pastry in pleats.

Your pie will have an open top in the middle.

Your pie will have an open top in the middle.

Brush the pleated pastry with some more of the beaten egg or milk. Sprinkle the remaining demerara sugar over the top of the pastry and fruit. This will give a nice crunchy texture to your cooked pie.

Brush with egg and sprinkle with sugar.

Brush with egg and sprinkle with sugar.

Put your pie in the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes until the pastry is golden and the fruit is cooked. Leave to cool slightly before cutting into wedges and serving with cream, custard, fruit sauce or some ice-cream.

Cook until golden brown.

Cook until golden brown.

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