RECIPE // Rustic Free Form Apple Pies

RECIPE // Rustic Free Form Apple Pies

We love that Highlands local, Anna Phillips is back in the kitchen (hers or yours!) with her fab, bespoke cooking classes – On The Plate With Anna.

In celebration of Pie Time happening in The Highlands this month, Anna has shared the perfect recipe for these cold, winter days. These Rustic Free Form Apple Pies feed four (or one, if you’re like us and one bite of apple pie isn’t enough!).

Who ate all the pies? We did!


Apple Pie




Maggie Beer’s Sour Cream Shortcrust Pastry

125g sour cream (full fat)

250g plain flour

200g unsalted butter, chilled and cut into 1cm cubes


Apple Filling

20g unsalted butter

600g Granny Smith apples

80g caster sugar

1 lemon, rind finely grated and juiced

¼ teaspoon vanilla extract

1 tablespoon cornflour

2 tablespoons water

4 tablespoons almond meal

2 tablespoons milk to glaze


To make the pastry, place the flour on workbench and add the butter, then mix with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.


Add the sour cream into the middle of the mix and continue to combine and mix ingredients until the dough starts to incorporate into a ball.


Alternatively, place the flour into the bowl of a food processor with chopping blade, add butter and pulse until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Add the sour cream and continue to pulse until the dough starts to come together into a ball.


Wrap the dough in plastic film and refrigerate for 20 minutes.


While dough is resting, make the pie filling. Peel, quarter and core the apples, then thinly slice.


Place the butter into a medium sized saucepan add the apple, sugar, lemon rind and 2 tablespoons lemon juice and vanilla. Gently stir and turn over the apples to combine. Cook uncovered over medium heat for about 6 minutes until the apple just begins to soften. Gently turn the apples 2-3 times to cook evenly. Blend the cornflour and water and add to the hot apples. Cook for 1 minute. Remove mixture to a large bowl to begin the cooling of the mixture.


Allow to cool for 15 minutes. Turn occasionally (if the apples are too hot it will melt the pastry this is why generally the filling for pies is cold).


Preheat oven to 200C.


To make 4 smaller pies divide the dough into 4 x 140g pieces of dough. Roll out between kitchen baking paper until ½ cm in thickness and about 20cm in circumference.


Transfer rolled dough onto a large paper lined baking tray/slide.

You should fit two pastry pie rounds per tray.


Sprinkle the middle of each pastry round with a circle of 1 tablespoon almond meal and flatten out (diameter about 12cm). Divide the pie mix into four and spoon on top of the almond. It is important to leave an empty outer ring (about 4cm of pastry) that you then lift and fold up to make a border around the pie.


Lightly brush the pastry pie edge with milk just before baking.


Bake in preheated oven for 25 minutes until golden.


The cooked hot pastry will be delicate so slide the pie on the paper off the tray and onto a cooling rack.


Allow to rest for 10 minutes before serving.




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