*blush* This week, I went for a walk at lunchtime and came home with a collection of apples from the local orchard. I wanted to make this pie for Jef, and was sure that I’d posted the recipe to the blog last year… no, it was sitting here as a draft from almost exactly one year ago. I know I’ve been bad at keeping up with things, but this is really ridiculous!
So, here’s a recipe and a story about an old pub that I meant to post last year. I made the pie again this weekend, but the photos are all from last year. Enjoy 🙂
Once upon a time, there used to be a pub in Milton Keynes called ‘Trekkers‘. It was a science fiction theme pub, and as you can imagine, this household was rather excited when it first arrived in (I think) 2002. It was a proper theme pub, with jokey menus, themed cocktails and a life-size Dalek that lurked in one of the back rooms. I managed to track down a copy of the menu from the wonderful Wayback archive so here you go, have a good read!
They went to town with the decor as well, lots of lava lamps and star scenes. Back in those days me and Jef were involved with a local goth group which met once a week and went around the pubs of Buckinghamshire, taking it in turns to go out in Milton Keynes, Aylesbury and High Wycombe. Rather a lot of those meetings took place in Trekkers – there’s a pleasing overlap between goths and science fiction, I find!
Anyway, this week I was looking for a way to use up the large haul of apples I’d scrumped from the Woughton Community Orchard on my lunch break, and Jef reminded me of the Trekker’s apple pie, a multi-layered thing of beauty. Pie crust, topped with spiced apples, topped with caramel, topped with crumble. Wow! That was going to be a challenge, but I was up for it. The recipe below makes 2 individual sized pies – I was willing to experiment, but didn’t want us to have to eat a sad failed pie for the next few days if it didn’t all go to plan. These mini pies were perfect…
Trekkers eventually closed down in 2004, and I think the owners went on to open up another version in Ireland. The pub is still there and has been through a few different guises over the years, and most recently has had a remake into an Italian restaurant. It’s actually the pub I went to to celebrate my viva, just over a year ago now – to be fair, it was mainly because it was the nearest one to the OU! But I’ve never had a meal there. Trekkers was a long long time ago now, but I do still miss it. Still, we have a version of their pie, and that’s something.
Trekkers Toffee Apple Pie
For the pie
- Butter for greasing
- 250g ready made shortcrust pastry (or half a standard supermarket block)
- Icing sugar to roll out
- 2 tbs custard powder
- 250g eating apples, peeled and cored
- 1 rounded tsp cinnamon
- ¼ tin dulche du leche (or Carnation caramel)
For the crumble topping
- 60g plain white flour
- 60g brown sugar
- 30g cold butter, cut into small pieces
- Preheat the oven to 220C/190C Fan/Gas 6.
- Grease two mini pie tins with butter.
- Grate two third of the apples. Chop the rest into small chunks. Mix the cinnamon evenly through the grated apple.
- Make the crumble topping by stirring together the sugar and flour then rubbing the butter through until it looks like coarse breadcrumbs.
- Roll the pastry into a ball and roll into a circle about a third larger than the pie tins.
- Drape the pastry into the tin and press gently into the flutes.
- Sprinkle the custard powder into the bottom of the cases.
- Fill the cases with the apple and cinnamon mix.
- Cover the fruit filling evenly with the dulche du leche and then top with the crumble.
- Bake for 20 minutes until the pastry is golden and the crumble is well browned.
- Serve with cream, custard or ice cream – or if you’re my husband, all three 😉