Friday, 28 November 2008

Tart that's not a tart, cos it's a pie!

So last week we had a whole load of confusion about a tart. I kept calling it a pie, and it wasn't, it was a tart. Now I have the other problem, I've made a pie, but it's in a tart dish, so it's blatantly a tart!

This is indeed the pie I was going to make last week when all this confusion started. Back then I didn't have the ingredients, and so instead we had to struggle on like the troupers we are and make do with a cranberry and pecan frangipane tart. We suffer in this flat we really do.

Tonight we have friend coming for dinner and I wanted a nice dessert. The cranberries in the fridge were still good and I had a nice new batch of cooking apples. It just had to happen. This time however, it wasn't having the ingredients that was the problem, it was quite the opposite, I had the butter, and could plan for the cream cheese, except one of our friends doesn't eat dairy. When asked by N if this was a problem, I laughed, "no no," I said, "it's not a problem, it's a challange!" I definitely enjoy this stuff far too much.

So yesterday I prepared the pie, veganising it as I went along. It wasn't actually as difficult as I'd expected. I replaced the cream cheese with silken tofu, and the butter in the pastry with vegan margarine, and the egg with soya milk. This made the pastry less fluffy, but it still looks pretty good. In fact, I think it looks downright pretty if you ask me.

We haven't tried it yet of course - it's taken some will power not to, I can tell you - so I will have to report on the flavour and response later, but hopefully it'll be a winner. I'm going to serve it with whipped brandy soya cream so if nothing else at least the booze should go down a treat!

here's the recipe. I adapted it from one in the Sainsbury's magazine.

Cranberry and apple pie (Makes one 9'' pie)

375g of your favourite sweet pastry (replace the butter with vegan marg and any egg or milk with soya milk)

250g cranberries
250g apples, peeled, cored and sliced thinly
juice of one orange
200g light muscovado sugar
200g silken tofu

Lightly flour the worksurface and roll out the dough and line the tin, collecting the scraps to make the lattice top. Chill for at least 30 minutes. Preheat the oven to 180C.

Put the cranberries, apples and orange juice in a saucepan and simmer uncovered until all the berries have popped, the apple is cooked and it is a thick bubbling sauce - aprox 15mins. Stir in the sugar and then leave to cool.

Gently prick pastry shell with a fork, line it with parchment and fill with baking beads. Bake for 20 mins, then remove the beads and cook for a further 5mins, until dry. Leave to cool.

Stir half the cold cranberry mixture into the tofu and blend until smooth. Spread evenly over the base. Cover with the remaining cranberry mixture, then with strips of rolled leftover dough make a lattice top.

Bake for aprox 40-50mins, until the pastry top is golden (keep your eyes on this, in my oven it took a while, but it might be much faster in yours.

Serve warm, or at room temperature.


  1. That looks soooo good. Despite having just eaten 'friday night tea' and being, therefore, well and truly full of bread and fruit I could eat a piece right now!

  2. I'll take requests for when we come and visit you know. The North London Kitchen does occasionally ship goods, as well you know!