Mbecause the pie season must be one of the best times for me; I try to eat one a day in December. After missing last year, this year I’m going to work hard to visit as many bakeries as possible to taste theirs. When tarts fill you with joy, it’s such a disappointment to be sitting at the table to find that your friends don’t feel the same about raisins and dried fruits. I have a few like this – they will remove the filling and only eat the dough. It makes me sad, so I thought something had to be done. This is my take on an alternative mince pie for friends who don’t like them.
Apple pies with sherry
Preperation 1 hour
Coldness 4 h 35 min
to cook 40 minutes
For the pastry
110g caster sugar
260g plain flour
A pinch of fine salt
125 g cold unsalted butter, cubed
430 g of peeled and cored Bramley apples, diced
120g of golden powdered sugar
20 ml of soft sherry
2 heaped tablespoons of cornstarch
Softened butter, for lubrication
Demerara sugar, to water
For the dough, place all the dry ingredients in a large bowl or the bowl of a stand mixer / food processor and mix well. Add the butter, mix until crumbs form, then add the egg and a drizzle of water, and mix again until a dough forms; add another trickle of water, if necessary. Knead gently until smooth, then shape into a disc, wrap tightly and refrigerate for four hours
Put the apples, sugar and cinnamon in a saucepan, stir and cook over low-medium heat for about 10 minutes, until the apples become translucent while retaining their shape and the sugar dissolves. Add the sherry, then use a skimmer to transfer the fruit to a large bowl and let cool a bit.
Meanwhile, whisk the cornstarch into the apple juice remaining in the pot until there are no more lumps, then pour into the cooked apples, tossing to coat the fruit in the starch mixture. of corn, then let cool completely.
To assemble the pies, generously grease nine muffin holes in a deep muffin pan and refrigerate for 15 minutes.
Gently knead the cooled dough, then roll it out to about 4-5 mm thick. Cut out nine 10 cm discs for the bases and nine 6 cm discs for the lids, rolling up the scraps as needed.
Press the larger circles of dough into the muffin cups, making sure there are no holes. Pour the apple mixture, filling the boxes up to ½ cm from the top. Put on the lids and fold the edges to seal the pies. Refrigerate for 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, heat the oven to 190C (170 fan) / 375F / gas 5. Pierce the top of each pie with a knife, sprinkle with demerara sugar and bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden brown.
Remove from the oven, let cool for 15 minutes, then delicately unmold and enjoy warm or at room temperature.
Fiona Beckett’s drink match These pies contain sherry, so it makes sense to drink sherry with them – cream sherry, preferably. Waitrose No. 1 Rich Cream Sherry (£ 11.99 a full-size bottle, 20%), which is made by top sherry producer Lustau, would be perfect.