Monday, 31 August 2009

Yellow Plum & Gooseberry Pie

Pie, just what I need to be making (and eating). However I floated the idea before our guest and the idea was received with sufficient enthusiasm that there was nothing to do but go for it.

We had three cups of very late ripening gooseberries that we had picked from the garden. They were also intensely sour. Also, we had bought a basket of plums that turned out not to be very exciting eating. Again, rather on the sour side. I wouldn't normally put a cup of sugar in anything, but given how sour these two fruits were it turned out that it wasn't a grain too much. If anything a couple more tablespoons would have been a good thing. If you have less sour gooseberries and plums you may wish to cut back a bit however. In spite of the fruit not being that great to eat it made excellent pie.

This, by the way, makes a 10" pie. If you wish to make a 9" pie, I would think you could reduce the filling ingredients by a third. (Not the crust. Just have a little leftover dough. The proper thing to do with it is to cut it in pieces, sprinkle it with cinnamon sugar, and bake it on the tray under the pie.)

8 servings
2 hours prep time - but don't forget to allow 2 or 3 hours to cool

Yellow Plum and Gooseberry Pie
Make the Crust:
2 1/2 cups soft (pastry) whole wheat flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup unsalted butter
1/4 cup neutral flavoured vegetable oil
6 to 8 tablespoons ice-cold water

Mix the salt into the flour. Cut the butter into the flour and salt with a pastry cutter or two knives. The less you handle the dough with your fingers, the better. The butter must not be melted into the flour, but distributed evenly throughout in small sand or grit sized pieces. (It should be soft enough to be a bit waxy, but not soft.) Drizzle in a little very cold water while stirring with a fork, until it holds together and forms a ball. Do not use too much water. It is better to encourage the last dryish bits to stick by rounding them up and pressing them into the dough. You may fold it over and press a couple of times, but do not knead it.

Roll about two-thirds of it out on parchment paper and fit it to your pie dish. Be sure to roll it it enough before placing it; if you stretch the dough it will shrink in baking. Put in the filling, and roll out the remaining dough to cover the pie. Pinch it sealed around the edges, and remove any excess dough. Pierce it in several places with a fork, to allow the steam to escape.

Make the Filling:
24 yellow plums
3 cups dark red gooseberrries
1/4 cup water
1 cup sugar
5 tablespoons minute tapioca
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Cut the plums into quarters and put the quarters into a bowl. Put the pits and any flesh clinging to them into a pot with the washed and drained gooseberries. Bring to a boil and boil until the berries burst. Press the mixture through a seive, into the bowl with the plums. Discard the seeds, pits and skins that won't go through.

Add the sugar, tapioca and cinnamon to the plums and gooseberries and mix well. Put in the prepared crust, and cover with the top crust.

Bake for 1 hour to 1 hour 10 minutes, until well browned. As you may see in the picture, this is a bit prone to leaking, so be sure to put a tray under the pie as it bakes. Let the pie cool completely before serving, otherwise it will be so runny as to be soup in a crust.

Last year at this time I made Herbed Cream Cheese Spread, Two Fresh Chutneys, and Almond Jelly with Peaches.


Joanne said...

It is sad when the fruit isn't sweet enough to eat on it's usually means the season is on it's last legs. At least you knew how best to enjoy it! The pie looks great.

Ferdzy said...

Well, I'm happy to say in this case it was less the season coming to an end than this particular variety of gooseberries, and somewhat the variety of plums. Also not a very hot summer this year, and sun heat=sugar in fruit.