No back story for this one and no science bit unusually for me but it does show you step by step how to create my signature contemporary pies with reverse lattice cut-outs. I’ve now been asked a few times for a run down on how I do one of my pies, so here is the full recipe and set of photos.

If you’ve got any queries about how to do this, just add it to the comments below and I’ll do my best to answer. I’d love to see any that you make yourselves – please show it here or tag me in Instagram or Twitter xxx


I have not used egg in the pastry as I do not want it to puff up during baking. It needs to bake as flat as possible and, as eggs are natural leaveners, not including any egg helps this. Also the pie is not blind baked – keeping a baking tray in the hot oven before you put the pie in helps to avoid that dreaded soggy bottom.

  • 20cm pie tin
  • Rolling pin
  • Baking paper
  • Palette knife
  • Sharp knife
  • Baking tray wide enough to sit your pie tin on)
  • Pastry brush
  • Your choice of at least one small cutter
  • Bowls
  • Medium saucepan and wooden spoon
  • Rolling pin
Ingredients – pastry
  • Plain flour – 250g
  • Unsalted butter, slightly softened – 125g
  • Salt – a pinch
  • Caster sugar – 60g
  • Orange zest – zest of one large fresh orange
  • A little milk  – about 30ml to bring the pastry together and for brushing later
Ingredients – filling
  • Mixed fruit – 500g (can be fresh or frozen)
  • Eating apple – 1 whole apple, cored, peeled and diced (if you are using tiny apples, like a pippin, then you’ll need one and a half apples)
  • Granulated sugar – this is to taste, but you will need at least 80g and probably more depending on how tart your berries are. Plus you’ll need a little extra for sprinkling
  • Ground almonds – 60g
Method – fruit filling
  1. This will vary in the length of time taken, depending on whether you are using fresh berries (only about a 5 minute pre-cook) or frozen (about 15 minutes)
  2. Place your berries, the diced apple and the granulated sugar in your saucepan and put over a medium heat (leave the ground almonds for later)
  3. You will need to continually stir and gently prod the berries to ensure they break up a little
  4. Whatever you do, do NOT add any additional water to the the saucepan – it may look at first as if they are too dry and will burn, but will a bit of stirring plenty of juice will come out. If you had added some water, the whole mix will turn out too wet for the pie
  5. Take the saucepan off the heat when the berries have oozed a little juice, some of them have broken up a bit and the apple has softened slightly
  6. Leave to cool while you make the pastry
Method – pastry
  1. No need to make this pastry in stages – put all the ingredients in a bowl together (excluding the milk) and rub together until you get it to the fine breadcrumbs stage
  2. Drip in a bit of milk at a time (you only want ‘just enough’) until you can massage the pastry and bring it together into a ball. It’s ready when it picks up all the pastry bits from the side of the bowl – and remember not to overwork it
  3. If you’re in a warm or hot room, put the pastry in the fridge for five minutes so it’s easier to work with. If you’re in a cool room you can go straight to the next step. As it’s a simple shortcrust pastry it needs less consideration and resting than one with egg in it
  4. Have your pie tin ready. I used an enamel tin for this and have found I do not need to grease or flour it; it work fine as it is. You will know if your choice of tin is prone to sticking
  5. Break off about a third of the pastry and leave to one side
  6. Using two pieces of baking paper: one on the work surface and one on top of the pastry roll our the pastry as thinly as you dare. I do it to about 2-3mm. You will probably need to keep taking off the top sheet of baking paper and repositioning it so it doesn’t curl
  7. Make sure it spreads wider than the full diameter of your tin
  8. Take off the top sheet and place your tin upside down on the pastry
  9. Invert your pastry and tin together and peel off the baking paper gently
  10. Lift and ‘feed’ the pastry into the corners of the tin and trim off the excess with a sharp knife
  11. Put this excess together with the pastry you left to one side earlier
  12. Press down with your thumb all the way round the edge of the pie to ensure the pastry grips to the tin and doesn’t shrink during baking
  13. Leave the pie tin to one side
  14. Roll out the remaining pastry using the same method as above (with the baking paper) and to the same thickness
  15. Press out shapes with your chosen cutter and carefully remove them. You want to use both the lattice you are creating AND the shapes you have cut out
  16. Make sure that the gaps between the cut-outs aren’t too thin or they will break when you place the lattice on. Neither should they be too thick or you’ll have too much pastry. between 6-12mm is fine
  17. Make sure you cut out enough shapes so that the lattice it has created fits over the entire diameter of the pie
  18. What you have cut out will invert on the pie as you are going to flip the lattice pastry over
Method – filling and assembly
  1. Put your oven on to 190C fan / 210C conventional and put the baking tray in
  2. Spread out the ground almonds on the bottom of the pie
  3. Now is the time to pour your cooled filling into the pastry case and spread evenly
  4. Dampen the edge of the pastry case with a little milk using the brush
  5. Lift the pastry lattice up with the baking paper still attached – flip this over and place it pastry-side down on the filled pie
  6. Carefully remove the baking paper and press down the edges so that the lattice adheres to the pastry case
  7. Re-brush the edges of the pastry  where it is dry (the new lattice bits)
  8. Take your cut-out shapes and arrange them around the edge of the pie, pressing them down lightly (but not so hard you leave finger marks)
  9. Sprinkle some extra granulated sugar over the pastry
  10. Pop in the oven and bake for 25 – 30 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden
  11. Can be served warm or left to cool

Enjoy 🙂


%d bloggers like this: