Insanely gorgeous apple pie with raspberries, a sesame crust, a lattice top, and a juicy ruby filling. A delicious way to use your sweet summer berries, and it works great with frozen raspberries too. You can also use your favorite plain pie crust.
What is a crostata?
A crostata is basically Italian for pie, so this is technically a raspberry apple pie.
In Spanish it makes us think of crusty and crunchy top, which is exactly what you get from a good lattice pie.
The word crostata is also used for a galette, which is a free-form tart where no pie pan is used and the dough is simply folded over the fruit in the border and leaving a round opening in the middle, such as in the grape and brie galette.
I should’ve started making this pie yesterday and letting it cool completely, even refrigerate it for a few hours, before cutting it, but hey, there were pictures to be taken and a post to be scheduled. A food blogger’s daily issues, having to eat this raspberry apple crostata still warm. Tough day.
This crostata recipe was made with figs originally, but I decided to make a 180° turn and use apples and raspberries. The berries are frozen since it's the middle of winter here in Buenos Aires.
Though I have added this and that to doughs before, this one has sesame seeds, an ingredient I use a lot but never in this way. Let me tell you about the crunchiness the seeds generate after being baked! A fantastic idea it turned out to be.
Top dough tips
- The dough is much more rustic than say, a regular sweet pie dough. That means it will break more (images 1 & 2) and you'll need to handle it differently because of that. I find it easier to line the pan in parts, which is no issue really since pie dough can be patched up easily.
- As with all doughs, keep it cold until the moment you need to roll it. And then refrigerate the lined pan (image 3), or better yet, freeze it. It's easier and faster.
- Lattice: I recommend you roll it, cut it on a board (image 4) and take it back to the fridge for a few minutes for it to harden and lift up easily. That way you'll end up with less broken strips. If that happens they can be patched together. Look at my lattice and see how it is patched up. And then feel like you can't make a more rustic or irregular lattice, haha!
Food processor crust
I made this dough in the food processor from beginning to end, as I do with all doughs.
It comes together in a few minutes; it takes longer to toast and measure the ingredients. And like all pie doughs, it has to be admitted to the refrigerator before rolling it and fitting into the pan. It has to do with using all butter and letting the dough relax after the stress of being swirled in the processor.
And it turned out to be slightly crumbly like a peanut butter cookie dough sometimes is.
But no biggie, just patch it up if it breaks while trying to fit it into the pie plate. You won’t have to use pie weights, or pre-bake it, so there will be no shrinking of the dough. The whole thing is assembled - raw dough and cooked ruby-colored filling - and then chilled before going into the oven.
Apple raspberry filling
Mixing apples and raspberries was a last moment idea because I didn't want to make an apple pie. I wanted it to be more colorful and add something different the same way the sesame was already contributing to the crust.
Well, it was a winning combination! Not only the color is fantastic, but the two fruits work wonders together.
The amounts given in the recipe can be varied, more of this or less of that. Take into account the liquid in them, especially if the raspberries are frozen.
The lattice itself can be made any way you want, as long as there are spaces of open filling between the stripes.
My stripes are thick, irregular, and more an act of faith than technique. For me, it's all about the recipe and the flavor.
But, you may want to spend time cutting perfect strips and refrigerating them for just the right amount of time so they don't get too cold that they brake, but cold enough so they lie in perfect lines on top of the still warm raspberry apple filling. Go for it, it will make a gorgeous pie!
Or omit stripes and go all-in with stars, hearts, braids, and so on. Whatever is your jam.
What else can I tell you about this crostata? Oh yes, it’s as good as it looks. So I hope it looks good.
I have a rustic idea about lattice pies the same way I do for galettes, like this strawberry one. I don’t mind if there are uneven strips of dough on top, just like I don’t mind what shape the galette sides have. Whatever way your strips look, fine.
- Make individual pies.
- Make a galette, on a pie plate. A galette is a free-form pie, where the dough isn't fitted into a pan. That sounds counter-intuitive, but what I mean is to use the pie plate as a container because the dough is crumbly. But don't make a lattice or care about the sides. Simply fold the hanging dough inward over some of the filling. If it leaks you have the pie pan as a safety net.
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For the dough:
- ¾ cup whole almonds (toasted and cooled, optional)
- ½ cup sesame seeds (toasted and cooled, optional)
- ½ cup (100g) of sugar
- 2 cups (270g) all-purpose flour
- ¼ teaspoon cinnamon
- ¼ teaspoon salt
- 8 oz (1 cup or 225g) unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces
- 2 large eggs
- ½ teaspoon vanilla
For the filling:
- 1 pound (450g) granny smith apples, about 5, peeled, cored and cut into chunks
- ½ pound (225g) fresh or frozen raspberries
- ½ cup (100g) light brown sugar
- ¼ cup (50g) granulated sugar
- 2 tablespoons flour
- Zest of 1 lemon
- 1 tablespoon butter
- A few tablespoons light brown sugar (for sprinkling the dough)
For the dough:
- Lightly toast seeds and almonds, being careful not to burn them. Let them cool. You can use them raw, but toasting develops a great flavor.
- Food processor: put both in the bowl of a food processor fitted with the steel blade, and add 1 tablespoon of the sugar. Process until medium ground.
- Add the rest of the sugar, flour, cinnamon and salt and process until well blended.
- Scatter cold, diced butter on top and process until it looks like coarse sand.
- Mix eggs in a bowl with the vanilla and add to the flour mixture.
- Process until it starts to come together, about 10 to 15 seconds. Don’t let it turn into a ball.
- By hand: follow the same process as with the food processor, but mix ingredients in a bowl. Integrate the butter with your hands or a pastry cutter, which you can buy online.
- For both ways: transfer the shaggy mass onto a lightly floured counter.
- Gather into a ball touching the dough as little as possible.
- Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for 1 hour or more.
- When you have the filling cooling, take the dough from the refrigerator and divide it into two uneven pieces (⅔ and ⅓). Keep the smaller piece refrigerated, covered, while you roll the other one.
- Roll the large piece to about ¼ of an inch, using additional flour to prevent sticking.
- Transfer to a 9-inch (24cm) pie plate, with removable bottom is best. Without stretching it, make it fit in the pan, removing excess dough. You may need to patch it or do it in parts as this dough is very crumbly.
- Add the filling and spread to cover the whole pan.
- Roll the small piece of dough on a lightly floured surface and cut strips with a pizza cutter.
- Make a lattice over the filling, adding strips one way and then the other. Press where the strips meet the bottom dough to adhere.
- Freeze the assembled pie for 10-15 minutes (or refrigerate for 30 minutes if you have no other option).
- Preheat oven to 350ºF/180°C.
- Take the pie from the freezer, sprinkle a few tablespoons of extra sugar on top of the lattice, and bake the pie for about 40 minutes, until golden and the filling is bubbly.
- Let cool completely on wire rack. Serve with a dollop of whipped cream if you want to.
- Refrigerate leftovers, covered.
For the filling:
- In a large saucepan, put all filling ingredients and cook over low heat until butter melts and fruit begins to release their juices, about 5 minutes. As soon as it bubbles remove from heat.
- If not using immediately, keep refrigerated, covered, for a few days.
- The dough is much more rustic than say, a regular sweet pie dough. That means it will break more (image above) and you'll need to handle it differently because of that. I find it easier to line the pan in parts, which is no issue really since pie dough can be patched up easily.
- As with all doughs, keep it cold until the moment you need to roll it. And then refrigerate the lined pan, or better yet, freeze it. It's easier and faster.
- Lattice: I recommend you roll it on a wooden board, cut the strips and take it back to the fridge for a few minutes for it to harden and lift up easily. That way you'll end up with less broken strips. But they can easily be patched together. Look at my lattice and see how it is patched up. And then feel like you can't make a more rustic or irregular lattice, haha!
- The amounts given in the recipe can be varied, more of this less of that. Take into account the liquid in them, especially if the raspberries are frozen.
- Prep Time: 20 minutes
- Pie crust making: 90 minutes
- Cook Time: 40 minutes
- Category: Pies & Tarts
- Method: Baking
- Cuisine: International
Keywords: apple raspberry pie, apple raspberry crostata