zoom Russian cranberry & apple pie

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    Russian cranberry & apple pie

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    Russian cranberry & apple pie

    • Vegetarian
    • Preparation time: 20 minutes + chilling
    • Cooking time: 40 minutes
    • Total time: 1 hour + chilling

    Serves: 8


    For the pastry
    185g butter, at room temperature
    180g pack soft cream cheese
    Pinch salt
    50g caster sugar
    ¼ tsp vanilla extract
    325g plain flour, plus extra for dusting

    For the filling
    400g eating apples (about 3 small apples)
    300g fresh or frozen cranberries
    100g light brown soft sugar
    ¼ tsp ground cinnamon
    ¹/8 tsp freshly ground nutmeg
    50g breadcrumbs (you can use brioche,
    rye or pumpernickel)
    1 British Blacktail Medium Free Range Egg, beaten with ½ tbsp water
    Icing sugar, for dusting


    1. To make the pastry, put the butter and cream cheese into a food processor with the salt, sugar and vanilla and whizz until the mixture is creamy. Add the flour and whizz again until the mixture comes together. Scrape this out onto a floured work surface and knead for a few minutes, bringing the pastry into a ball. Flatten into a disc, wrap and put in the fridge for an hour.

    2. Take almost two-thirds of the pastry and roll it out to fit into a pie dish 23cm across and 5cm deep. Press the pastry into the dish, cut off the excess, then put the pie base into the fridge with the rest of the pastry.

    3. Peel and core the apples. Cut them into thin slices and toss with the cranberries, sugar and spices. Get the pie base out of the fridge and sprinkle the breadcrumbs into it, followed by the fruit. The fruit will be quite high in the dish, but it will shrink a lot.

    4. Roll out the rest of the pastry on a floured surface, making it big enough to cover the pie. Wet the rim of the pastry on the base. Carefully lay the pastry for the top over the fruit. Firmly press the pastry down all the way around. Trim off any excess and crimp the edges. Use whatever pastry is remaining to make decorations for the top of the pie. Put back in the fridge for 30 minutes and preheat the oven to 200ºC, gas mark 6 and put a baking sheet in to warm up.

    5. Brush the pie with the beaten egg and water mixture. Make four vents in the top with the tip of a sharp knife and slide the pie onto the hot baking sheet. Bake for 10 minutes, then turn the heat down to 180ºC, gas mark 4 and cook for another 30 minutes. The pie should be golden and the fruit inside completely tender. Leave to cool a little. Sift a light dusting of icing sugar over the top before serving.

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