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Cheese Pie

As I said before, I'm not really sure what to call this in English. Pie suggests something savoury to me, not sweet. At the same time, it's not cheese cake. Maybe someone can suggest what to call this one :)

I'm sorry I don't have more pictures. As you can see it has already been half eaten.

This recipe has gotten a lot of use

Pastry ingredients :
3 egg yolks
1 tea cup filled with natural greek yoghurt
100g butter
1 teaspoon (~5g) baking powder
500g flour (1)
(optional) breadcrumbs (2)

Filling ingredients:
You can make this with either cheese or apple. Cheese is easier, but apple is somewhat tastier.

For cheese filling:
2x500g boxes of Fromage Frais (3)
2 eggs
4-5 sugar spoons (4)
flavouring - vanilla, lemon zest, orange zest etc (5)
4-5 spoons flour (6)

For apple filling:
1-2 kg apples (7)
4-5 sugar spoons (4)

Tray: this is measured for those trays that come with the oven and slide in the oven rails. For anything smaller, you need to adapt the recipe.

To prepare the tray, I take a small cube of butter (~1.5cm?) and spread it on the bottom and the 4 sides of the tray. Then I put on baking foil - this way the baking foil sticks to the tray and I don't have to play catch with it when I put my dough in. Mr Ts mom taught me that, very useful tip!


1. Pastry: in a big bowl, mix egg yolks, butter, yoghurt, 2 spoons of flower together until smooth-ish (I do it by hand). Start adding flour, one spoon at a time - don't forget the baking powder either! When the dough is suitable for kneading, move to the counter and keep kneading, and incorporating more flour. You're looking for consistency that can be rolled with a rolling pin easily.

2. Roll the first bit of pastry: once you've reached rolling pin consistency, separate dough into two parts. Take one of them and put in the fridge while rolling the second one. I personally like to put into cling film before putting in the fridge.

Roll the underneath layer as you normally would. Note that this recipe gives quite a thin layer of pastry:

 Lay the pastry in the tray. Then, take out the breadcrumbs and spread in a thin layer on the dough. This will absorb moisture from the filling. The breadcrumbs should be a really thin layer, not visible at all in the final product. You don't want to taste breadcrumbs when you eat it:

3. Making the filling: for the cheese filling, mix all ingredients well together. Make sure filling is sweet enough. Set aside.

For apple filling, skin the apples then grate them on the larger grater. If you don't want to skin them, that's fine. To make things faster, you can use the food processor with the grating attachment (get a good TV show if you don't use the food processor - it takes a while). Drain the grated apples well. Mix with cinnamon and sugar to taste. Set aside.

4. At this point, preheat your oven. I use 200C without ventilation.

5. Roll the second bit of pastry: roll the refrigerated bit of pastry the same as you rolled the first one.

6. Put the filling in the tray.

7. Add the second bit of pastry over the filling. Make sure the edges of the two layers of pastry are welded together. Take a fork or a knife and make holes in the top layer of pastry for the steam to escape. My mother and Mr Ts mother both use forks. I can't figure out how to make good enough holes using a fork so I use a knife. Do whatever works for you - the fork method looks prettier in the end. The knife one looks like this:

8. Put in the oven (which should be heated at 200 C by now) until the top is nice and golden. For my oven, this is about 20-25 minutes - your oven might vary. I check after 15 minutes and decide how much longer it needs.

9. Once it's done, I turn off the oven and leave it inside the oven with the oven door opened at about 30 degrees for 15ish minutes. Then I take it out and cover with a clean towel. Add icing suger if you want. Then nom!


1. My recipe says "flour as much as it will take". This is Mr T's mom's recipe. In practice I use around 500g of flour. I screwed up a few times until I learnt what the "right" consistency of dough feels like.

2. Breadcrumbs are used to absorb moisture so you don't get a soggy bottom. I personally use a Polish brand I bought at Sainsbury's.

3. Two items here:
     a. The pictures show this pie made with only 1x500g box. Last time I made this (in January) I used 3 boxes and Mr T complained it was too thick, and as I didn't remember I used 3 boxes I just ordered 1 this time thinking last time I used 2. So the result is too thin. It really needs 2 boxes.
     b. In Romania, you can buy this very basic cow's cheese which is unsalted and is not very runny either. I think it's the actual first result of making cheese. I haven't found this style of cow's cheese in the UK - fromage frais works for me as I mix it with some flour to get the consistency I'm used to - your milage may vary. I tried curd cheese as well but that's too sour. If anyone has another version of cow's cheese that can be used, I'm happy to hear it.

4. Sugar: this is really to your taste. That quantity works for me.

5. Add whatever you like. I personally make "orange zest" by zesting oranges and putting in a jar - one layer of orange zest one layer of sugar - the jar is kept in the fridge. Then I use this up as I make stuff and then I make more when it's over. Artificial flavouring works too but this recipe I learnt from my grandmother so I prefer it this way - it works particularly well for this cheese pie.

6. See 3b. I use flour to thicken the fromage frais. I wouldn't use it if I had cheese of the right consistency.

7. British apples tend to be very juicy. You might need to make more filling because they're so very juicy. You should plan for this. I bet you're wondering how I know this right about now...


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