Two weeks ago on Saturday, it was the world's best flatmate's birthday. A quarter of a century old and, may I assure you, she (also affectionately known as Puschel, though only by me) doesn't look a day over 21.
And what better present to give to her than a cookbook. This one to be precise. It's the bakery-related volume of a (I think) two volume cookbook of healthy fast food recipes all wrapped up in pretty pictures and graphics and a very hipster-y layout. A few weeks ago, Puschel came home with the first volume and when she continued raving about how great it was and how great the second volume was, too, the issue of her birthday present was resolved before it had even really come up. Maybe that was her plan all the way. She must've known that I wouldn't be able to resist giving her a cookbook, especially if it was one she specifically wanted. She knows me so well. Sometimes even too well. It's spooky. And not a topic of relevance here.
My second gift to her, as it is my gift to all my beloved ones who I spend their birthday with, was a birthday cake of her choice. And after hours (ok, I might be exaggerating. But it was at least 15 minutes) of poring over my cookbooks she decided on Leila Lindholm's Twin Peaks Cherry Pie. Not a choice I objected to because I (a) love, love, LOVE cherries and (b) had never made a real American Pie before. Well, I made Pumpkin Pie but not a realrealreal American Pie with a pastry lid and carved out decorations and everything.
It didn't come out as pretty as I planned but that was only because I used a much larger pie tin than the recipe intended so I had to make the lid extra thin to make it cover the whole pie.
Leila Lindholm's Twin Peaks Cherry Pie
150 g/0.75 cp cold butter
250 g/2.5 cups all purpose flour
45 g/0.2 cup sugar
0.5 Tbsp water
1.5 litres/2 glasses of cherries (if you can get your hands on fresh cherries, that'd be even better)
85 g/0.3 cup sugar
Zest and juice from 1 lemon
2 Tbsp corn flour
Dice the butter and combine it with the flour and the sugar in a medium mixing bowl. Add the egg and the water, then knead until just combined.
Wrap the dough in cling film and refridgerate for 30 minutes at least.
Preheat your oven to 175° C/350° F and grease your pie tin.
If you're using fresh cherries, pit them. If using canned ones, drain them and make sure you get rid of all the liquid. Put the cherries in a medium pot and add the sugar and the lemon zest. Scrape the seeds out of the vanilla pod and add the seeds and the pod to the mixture, too. Cook on medium heat for a few minutes.
Combine the lemon juice and the corn flour and add the mixture to the cherries. Stir until the stuff thickens, then remove from heat and take out the vanilla pod. Leave to cool.
Take the dough out of the fridge, remove the cling film and divide the dough into two parts, one being slightly smaller than the other. Roll out each half into a thin round disk.
Line the pie tin with the larger disk, then add the cherry filling and cover with the smaller disk. Press the disks together at the edges and cut off any excess dough. Make 4 or 5 star-like cuts around the centre of the pie, then decorate it with leaves, balls or flowers made out of the left over dough.
Glaze the pie with egg wash, then pop it into the oven for 35-45 minutes.