Scrunchy and crunchy, like edible Autumn leaves…
September is finally here, although you wouldn’t know it. I dug out all my cosiest knits over the weekend and was reunited with my favourite fluffy grey jumper. I very proudly threw it on to head off to brunch with the dog and husband on Sunday only to end up throwing it in the wash when I got back because it was drenched in my sweat. Lovely. Why does September always do this to us? Just when you let yourself get excited for colder days, jumpers and boots chunky enough to crunch through fallen leaves, one of those trademark September scorchers suddenly arrives. Sadly my favourite fluffy jumper is going to have to wait for a while, but there is one Autumn tradition that’s well and truly under way in my house and that’s Autumn baking – especially with apples.
One of my lovely neighbours gave me a bag full of cooking apples the other day and I cannot wait to get stuck in making making Apple Fritters, Apple Cookies and of course, my favourite Apple Pie Cake. But the truth is that I got a head start on the Apple Bakes back in August when I whipped up this Apple Rag Pie. The original recipe comes from Nigella Lawson, who made a traditional Greek Rag Pie using feta, sesame seeds and plenty of honey. Problem is, I’m not a big fan of Feta, but the basic idea was definitely something I wanted to try and so I switched out the cheese for spiced apples and toasted flaked almonds. Crunchy and packed full of juicy spiced apple chunks, it’s not only a doddle to make but is banging served hot with a blob of ice cream and packs a little extra punch from some Calvados soaked sultanas. It also freezes well, so whip it up now and it’ll be there waiting for you when those cold nights really begin to draw in. 🙂
Apple Rag Pie
adapted from Nigella’s Old Rag Pie
- 270g Filo Pastry
- 100g melted butter
- 2 large eggs
- 150ml full fat milk
- 4 apples, skinned, cored, chunked (…is that a thing?)
- 1/2 tbsp ground cinnamon
- 100g caster sugar
- 100g sultanas
- 100ml Calvados (or regular Brandy)
- 50g toasted, flaked almonds
- Place the sultanas in a bowl, pour over the Calvados Brandy and leave to soak ideally overnight or until they’re plump and drunk. 🙂
- Boil the apple chunks in water until they’re soft, but still hold shape. Drain, sprinkle with the sugar and cinnamon and then set aside.
- To assemble the Rag Pie; line the base of a deep rectangular baking tray with one layer of filo pastry, then brush with a little melted butter. Next, separate the remaining filo sheets into three equal piles. Take the first pile; tear and scrunch the sheets of filo – loosely balling them and placing them into the tray (careful not to press down!). Scatter over half of your apple mix and sultanas, then pour over a little more melted butter. Repeat the process with your next pile of filo.
- Scrunch and tear the last layer to top the pile, then pour over the last of the butter. Section the pie into equal slices with a sharp knife, being very careful not to squash down your layers of filo (otherwise you’ll get a soggy pie). Whisk together the eggs and milk, then pour over the pie. Top with the toasted, flaked almonds.
- Bake in a preheated oven for 30 minutes at 180°C and serve hot with ice cream or whipped cream.
- (You can also freeze it and cook it from frozen, just pop it in a cold oven, then heat it up at 180°C for 45 minutes. 🙂
Have a lovely week!