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Apple and Sour Cherry Pie


I’m never one to settle for one dimensional tastes and pie filling is no exception. In this recipe I used a variety to apples. Seek out apples in your part of the country that are considered cooking or pie apples. Here in the Midwest, braeburns fill that bill. To those I added a couple of galas for sweetness and a pink lady; just because it’s fun.

If you only use one variety make sure that it is a cooking apple.  Otherwise, “eating’ apples will cook down too much and it will become an applesauce and sour cherry pie.

Makes a 9-inch deep dish pie

Pie dough for double crust [1]
3/4 cup dried sour cherries
1/4 cup poire William or other brandy
scant 1/4 cup (2 oz) water
1/2 cup (3 1/2 oz / 100 g) granulated sugar
1/4 cup (2 oz / 60 g) light brown sugar
4 tablespoons (1 1/4 oz / 35 g) cornstarch
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/8 teaspoon ground cardamon
1/8 teaspoon nutmeg, preferably freshly ground
3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
zest from one lemon, preferably organic
2 teaspoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
6 apples (about 3 1/2 pounds)
1/4 cup sour cherry jam, optional
beaten egg for brushing top
granulated or course sugar for sprinkling

Roll out each of two disks of dough to about 13-inch diameter. Line a 9-inch deep dish pie pan leaving the dough with about an inch overhang. Place the other on a sheet pan and place them in the refrigerator will preparing the filling.

In a small saucepan add the dried cherries, liqueur and water. Simmer on low heat until the cherries are plump and the liquid has evaporated. Watch as this only takes about 5 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Preheat oven to 425°F.

In a large bowl mix together the sugars, cornstarch, cinnamon, cardamon, nutmeg, salt, zest and lemon juice.  Set aside.

Peel, core and slice apples into 1/4-inch slices. Toss into the sugar mixture as you go to prevent the apples from turning brown. Add the reconstituted the sour cherries to the apple mixture and mix to combine.

Pour the apple filling into a prepared pie shell, pressing down with your hands to compact the apples. Top with a second round of dough, folding top edge of dough under bottom edge and crimping as desired.

Place pie on a silcone or parchment lined sheet pan and bake for 30 minutes at 425°F. Reduce oven to 375°F and continue baking for another 30 minutes.

Cool completely on a rack. Slice and serve with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.