For desert, rather than the standard pumpkin or pecan pie (apparently Brits don't like Pumpkin) I made the Beet Pie which has become a new favorite, and since I had about 2 cups of sour cherries left from what I'd frozen this summer, I made an Apple Sour Cherry Pie. Although it came out a little 'juicier' than I'd like, here's the recipe exactly as I made it. I may try it again (next year when I have sour cherries again) and I'll drain the sour cherries before adding them, and I'll add a bit more flour and corn starch - corn starch being something I only use in berry pies that I know will be really juicy.
Four things I've been experimenting with lately with pies and pie crusts that I've been happy with: First, I've been making the pie dough in a food processor up to the point where I add the first half of the water (a few tablespoons), then turning it out on the counter and adding the rest of the water. And I always make each top or bottom separately (it just seems easier to me that way). Second, I've been using my standard recipe for pie dough (flour, butter, ice water, salt, sugar) but for sweet pies I've started adding about 1/4 cup of very finely chopped nuts (walnuts or pecans). Third, after reading the section about flour in Harold McGee's "On Food and Cooking" where he talks about gluten and how it develops in pastry dough, I've been making the dough a day in advance and letting it sit overnight in the fridge. Fourth, I've been using at least half raw or turbinado sugar http://www.sugarintheraw.com/ in the fruit filling, the other half regular granulated white sugar. So far, my experiments have been successful.
Apple Sour Cherry Pie
4 apples - mix of baking types like Rome, Macintosh or Cortland
2 cups pitted sour cherries
1/2 cup raw sugar
1/2 cup white sugar
2 T lemon juice
Lemon zest from one lemon
1 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 t nutmeg
1/4 t cloves
2 T flour
2 T corn starch
1 T Port or Whiskey (or 1 t of vanilla if you prefer)
1 C plus 2 T flour
1 stick cold butter, cut in pieces
2-4 T ice cold water
1 t salt
1 T sugar
1/4 cup walnuts or pecans
For the filling: Preheat the oven to 400 degrees. Peel and core the apples and cut into slices or chunky pieces (or both), adding lemon juice as you go to keep apples from turning brown. Add sour cherries, port and lemon zest. Mix all dry ingredients together in a small bowl, then add to the fruit mixture. Mix well and set aside.
Roll out bottom crust into 9 inch pie pan. Add filling and cover with top crust. Cut small holes in the top crust and sprinkle with raw sugar. Bake at 400 for 10 minutes. Reduce temperature to 375 and bake for 55 - 60 minutes until filling is bubbling and crust is brown. You may need to put foil or a pie crust ring around the edge of the crust to keep it from getting too brown. You may also need to place a pan on the rack below the pie pan to catch any escaping juices.
Serve with vanilla ice cream or whipped cream.