The Batch Lady apple and blackberry plait

This sweet plait is easy to make alongside the savoury version, as once you’ve got the hang of the technique you’ll be able to knock these up really quickly. This is delicious served with a generous helping of ice cream or custard. 

batch lady apple and blackberry plait
Danielle Wood

SERVES 4-6 

PREP 20 MINUTES 

COOK 40 MINUTES 

1 sheet ready-rolled puff pastry
400g can apple pie filling (omit this if you are making the fresh filling, as below)
160g frozen blackberries
1 egg, beaten
1 tsp caster sugar, to cook

IF MAKING YOUR OWN APPLE FILLING 

2 bramley apples, peeled, cored and chopped into 2cm cubes
2 tbsp caster sugar

1. If you are making your own filling, put the chopped apple and sugar in a small pan over a low heat and leave to cook, stirring occasionally, for around 10 minutes, until the apple is softened but still holding its shape. Cool.

2. Unroll the sheet of puff pastry and set on the countertop, keeping it on its greaseproof lining paper. 

3. Place the fresh or canned apple filling in a long strip running lengthways down the middle third of the pastry, leaving a 2cm gap at both ends. Dot the frozen blackberries along the length of the apple filling. 

4. With the picture as your guide, use a sharp knife to make diagonal cuts every 2cm along the length of the pastry on both sides of the filling. 

5. Bring up the ends of the pastry and use them to secure the filling at the top and bottom. 

6. Brush the edges of the pastry with the beaten egg, then start bringing the pastry strands into the centre, alternating sides so that the pieces overlap at the top and create a plait effect. 

TO COOK Slide the plait, still on its greaseproof paper, on to a baking tray and brush the top and sides with beaten egg, then sprinkle over the caster sugar. Transfer to an oven preheated to 180C/160C fan/gas 4 and bake for 40 minutes, covering with foil if the pastry starts to catch. The plait is now ready to slice and serve. 

TO FREEZE Bring up the sides of the greaseproof paper to encase the plait, then wrap in clingfilm. You can label the clingfilm or transfer the plait to a large, labelled freezer bag and freeze flat for up to one month. 

TO COOK FROM FROZEN This can be cooked from frozen. Unwrap the plait and place on a lined baking tray, then brush the top and sides with beaten egg and sprinkle over the sugar. Transfer to a 180C/160C fan/gas 4 oven and bake for 1 hour, covering with foil if the pastry starts to catch. The plait is now ready to slice and serve. 

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