Apple and blackcurrant pie

Photographer: Emma
makes 2 medium pies

I wanted to cook a dessert I could imagine farmer’s wives cooking during the winter to feed their hard working husbands and hungry, growing children.  Although, growing up in suburbia my knowledge of farm meals is lacking.  I talked to my workmate Nicola who grew up on a farm in Timaru and got some inspiration of foods synonymous with rural NZ.  She talked to me about Belgium biscuits, apple crumble, Anzac biscuits and fruit pies.
This recipe made two pies and even though they were perfectly sweet enough on their own, I wouldn’t have said no to a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.


Apple and blackcurrant mixture
2 soft cooking apples (or 1 tin of sliced apples)
2 cups water
(or 1 tin of slice apples + water)
6 granny smith apples
500g frozen blackcurrants
1 orange, zested
¼ c sugar
50 g butter

2 c flour
115g butter
½ tsp salt
1 tsp sugar
Iced water


1. Start with making the pastry; cut the butter into cubes and place in the freezer.
2. Once cold, process with the flour, salt and sugar. Don’t process for longer than 1 minute as your butter will start to warm up and clump together.
3. Add 1 tbsp ice cold water at a time until the pastry starts to come together in a ball.
4. Take dough out of processor, knead a little to combine, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate.
5. Empty frozen blackcurrants into a bowl to defrost.�
6. Cut the soft, cooking apples into cubes (approximately 1cmx1cm). Place in a large sauce pan with water. Cook on a low-moderate heat for at least 15 minutes stirring occasionally. Keep checking this as you may need to add more water. You want this to be like a thick, chunky sauce.
Alternatively to step 6, you can cook a tin of sliced apples with water until the apples break down.
7. Peel and core the granny smiths. Slice thinly.
8. Add the granny smith apples, orange zest, butter and sugar to the apple sauce (once it has broken down). Cook for 5-10 minutes to soften the granny smith apples (you want them to still retain some firmness).
9. Take the apples off the heat and leave to cool.
10. Preheat your over to 190ºC on Fan Bake.
11. Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Using a rolling pin and a little flour, roll the dough out thinly to 2-3mm.
12. Grease a flan tin and line the tin with the dough. Refrigerate the dough-lined tin.
13. Drain the apple mixture a little to get rid of any excess juice. Add the blackcurrants to the apple mixture and gently combine (the blackcurrants have a very strong pigment and will turn the apple purple).
14. Spoon the apple and blackcurrant mixture into the refrigerated pie shells.
15. Roll out the remaining pastry, cut into strips and make a lattice on the top.
16. Fan bake for 10 minutes at 190ºC, then reduce heat to 170ºC and cook for a further 10 – 15 minutes.