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Nadiya Hussain’s Apple Custard Pie

Bursting with soft apples and a creamy custard, this apple custard pie makes for a moreish autumnal dessert.

From the book

Introduction

I first made this by accident! One summer, leftover pastry in the fridge, too many apples from a windfall, a few egg yolks and a strong desire to bake (as usual!) and this thick, monumental pie was born. With its crumbly pastry, sweet/tart apple and smooth custard, the cold pie works well with a warm blackberry compote.

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Ingredients

For the apple filling:
10 eating apples (1.3kg), peeled, cored and sliced
55g caster sugar
40g unsalted butter
1 tbsp cornflour
2 tsp ground cinnamon
For the pastry:
265g plain flour
1½ tbsp icing sugar
A pinch of salt
135g unsalted butter, cubed and cold
3 - 4 tbsp cold water
For the custard:
4 egg yolks
40g caster sugar
400ml double cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 tsp almond extract
For the blackberry compote:
600g blackberries, halved
75g caster sugar
2 limes, juice and zest

Essential kit

You will need: a 20cm x 7cm deep round loose-bottomed cake tin.

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Method

Make the filling first so it has time to cool. Put the apples in a large saucepan along with the sugar, butter and cornflour and mix. Pop onto a medium heat and cook the apples down for 20 minutes with the lid on, making sure to stir occasionally. Take off the heat, add the cinnamon, mix and transfer to a flat plate to cool.

Now make the pastry. Put the flour in a food processor with the icing sugar and salt and whizz to combine. Add the butter and whizz till crumbly. Drizzle in the water and process till you have a mixture that just clumps together. Tip out and bring together without kneading. Shape into a flat disc and chill for 30 minutes.

Take a 20cm x 7cm deep round loose-bottomed cake tin. Roll out the pastry big enough to cover the base and sides with some overhang. I like to do this in between sheets of cling film to avoid using flour. Once the right size, pull off the top layer of cling film and flip the pastry into the cake tin. Peel off the other piece of cling film and shape the pastry around the base and sides of the tin. Once lined, cut off the overhang. Retain the cling film. Prick the base using a fork and pop into the freezer for 10 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C and pop a tray in.

Take the pastry out of the freezer and line with the cling film, making sure it hangs out over the side. Fill with baking beans or dry lentils, right to the top. Bake for 30 minutes on top of the hot tray. Remove from the oven, take out the cling film and baking beans, then bake again for 5–10 minutes until light golden and dry looking. Take out and set aside while you make the custard filling.

Put the egg yolks and sugar in a bowl and whisk. Add the cream, vanilla and almond extracts and mix.

Pour the apple filling into the pie case. Pour in the custard and coax it everywhere by gently stirring and moving the apples. Bake again for 1 hour–1 hour 10 minutes, till the centre has just set. Take out and leave to cool in the tin. Chill the pie overnight to set.

When you are ready to eat, make the compote. Add the blackberries to a pan. Use the back of a fork to squash a few to release the juices. Add the sugar, lime juice and zest and gently warm through on a medium heat. As soon as it begins to bubble, take it off the heat.

Serve a spoonful of warm compote with a chilled wedge of the pie. This is best eaten within a couple of days.

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From the book: Nadiya’s Fast Flavours

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