Fresh cherry pie
( SERVES 4 )
Lard pastry was a favourite of my grandmother, a naturally gifted baker from the north of England, and this is what you need here because you don't blind bake the pastry first. Buy the lard from a supermarket or butcher.
- Preheat the oven to 200C. Place the cherries, sugar, brandy, zest and water in a small saucepan.
- Dissolve the sugar over a medium heat for 20 minutes until a loose "jam" forms, then remove the -cherries from the heat and cool.
- To make the pastry, sift the flours and salt together into a large bowl and rub the lard in using an electric mixer with a beater attachment.
- When the mixture resembles breadcrumbs, add the water and knead for 3-4 minutes until you have a smooth dough. Refrigerate for 30 minutes before using.
- Grease and flour four 10cm diameter pie tins and roll out the pastry until it is about 5mm thick. Cut out 8 circles about 12cm across.
- Use half the pastry circles to line the pie tins, then spoon the cherry mixture into the pastry shells and cover with another piece of pastry, pressing the sides together to seal.
- Place the tins on a flat baking tray and slide it carefully into the oven. Bake for 30 minutes until golden brown.
- Carefully remove the pies from the tins and turn out onto individual serving plates. Serve hot with spoonfuls of whipped cream or vanilla ice cream.