185g cold butter, chopped
260g plain flour
40g sugar
¼ teaspoon fine salt
1 scant tablespoon each of cream and milk
620g ripe cherries
70g sugar
1 tablespoon cornflour
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 egg yolk mixed with ½ tablespoon milk, for glazing
thick cream, for serving

Here is a lovely, generous and not-too-sweet thick double- crusted cherry pie. The pastry is delicate to work with – and difficult when it is very hot – but gives a lovely rough, flaky result. I try to use as little sugar as I can with the cherries; adjust this depending on the sweetness of your cherries.

I use a 24cm pie dish or a springform tin. I like this plain, or with a little unwhipped, unsweetened thick cream.

View the recipe collection here


1.For the pastry, put the butter, flour, sugar and salt into a wide bowl.
2.Working with your fingers, very gently crumble the butter into the flour.
3.Bring the flour up from the bottom of the bowl, as though you are sifting through sand on the beach, and continue without pressing too hard, until the mix is in small, even, damp clumps.
4.Add the cream and milk and bring the dough lightly together into a damp mass.
5.Flatten a little, cover and put into the fridge for about an hour to firm up. (It can also be frozen at this stage.)
6.On a very well-floured surface and using a floured rolling pin, roll the pastry into a rectangle and fold it roughly over itself into three. Do this twice to create a few layers in the pastry.
7.Take just a little over half the pastry and roll it out to a circle of about 28cm diameter. (The pastry will be very moist, so don’t press down too hard with your rolling pin to avoid sticking.)
8.Lift the pastry up very loosely on your rolling pin and carefully lower it into a 24cm pie dish, to come about 3cm up the sides. Trim and neaten the sides.
9.Put into the fridge to chill while you prepare the cherries. Preheat the oven to 180°C.
10.For the filling, pit the cherries – don’t break all in half if possible, just some – and put them into a bowl.
11.Add the sugar, cornflour and vanilla and turn through to distribute evenly.
12.Scrape the cherries out with a spatula evenly over the pastry, making sure to scrape out all the slurry as well.
13.Roll out the rest of the pastry to a circle of about 25cm. Lift on your rolling pin and lower carefully over the top of the pie.
14.Turn the bottom pastry edges into the top layer so they join – and press with the back of a small spoon to give a rough scalloped edge and to make sure they are sealed together.
15.Whisk the egg and milk together in a small bowl and brush lightly over the pastry.
16.Make 6 or 7 long slashes in parallel lines right across the top.
17.Put into the oven and bake for about 1 hour, rotating the tin after 40 minutes.
18.The cherry juice will have bubbled up and darkened in parts, and the pastry will be deep golden and glossy.
19.Leave to cool slightly, before serving on its own, or with a dollop of thick cream.

Images and text from
Now & Then by Tessa
Kiros, photography by
Manos Chatzikonstantis.
Murdoch Books RRP $65.