There's nothing like the scent of an apple pie cooling on the windowsill to evoke memories of home. Of course you can buy delicious pies at the bakery and supermarket, but there's nothing like baking one yourself. Pies are comfort food. Baking a pie lets people know that you cared enough to take the time to make them a special treat.
Buy the fruit you wish to freeze or buy frozen fruit at the supermarket. You can make pie filling with just about any frozen fruit. Imagine what a treat a blackberry pie will be in the dead of winter or how much a homemade strawberry pie will bring at a school fete.
Prepare the fruit. Remove the fruit from the freezer. There are three ways you can thaw it. Keep it in it's freezer bag and thaw it in the microwave on defrost until the fruit has softened. The time will vary by microwave, so check it often. Fill a large bowl with tepid water and place the fruit, still in its container, in the water. When the water cools, pour it out and replace it with more tepid water. Repeat until the fruit has thawed. If you aren't in a hurry, simply remove the fruit from the freezer and place it on a plate on your counter until it defrosts. Thawed fruit will keep in your fridge for up to a day.
Drain the fruit. Pour the thawed fruit into a colander. Let it drain thoroughly or your pie will be runny.
Mix the fruit with 75 ml (1/3 cup) of flour, 75 ml (1/3 cup) of sugar and 2 ml (1/4 teaspoon) of salt. Taste the mixture. If it is too tart, add more sugar -- up to a total of 125 ml (1/2 cup). Don't overdo the mixing or your pie will have no texture. Some home cooks also add 30 ml (2 tbsp) of cornflour. This helps the pie to set but it isn't necessary.
Put a pie crust -- ready made is easier and faster -- into the bottom of a 25 cm (10 inch) pie pan. Pour the fruit filling into the crust and cover with a top crust. Pinch the top and bottom crust together and cut slits in the top crust to let steam escape.
Bake your pie at 190 degrees C (375F) or 45 minutes to an hour. To tell if it is done, insert a knife into the middle. If the knife slides in easily, the pie is done.
If the pie crust begins to brown on the edges before the pie is done, cover the edges with aluminium foil to avoid burning.
Tips and warnings
- If the pie crust begins to brown on the edges before the pie is done, cover the edges with aluminium foil to avoid burning.