Flag Pie



This delicious sweet flan is great for an American-themed barbeque or summer party.
Serves 6, Ready in 1 hour 50 minutes, plus cooling



• 175g plain flour
• 100g unsalted butter, chilled and diced
• 2 tbsp caster sugar
• 1 tsp orange zest
• 1 medium egg yolk
• 200g mascarpone cheese
• 1 tsp vanilla extract
• 2 tbsp caster sugar
• 150ml double cream
• 150g blueberries
• 2 small bananas, peeled and thinly sliced and tossed in a little lemon juice
• Approximately 12 strawberries, hulled and halved

1. To make the pastry, sift the flour into a large bowl and add the diced butter. Using your fingertips, rub the butter into the flour until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs. Stir in the sugar and orange zest.
2. Make a well in the centre and add the egg yolk and 1 tbsp cold water. Mix with a round-bladed knife to a rough dough, adding a few more drops of water if needed. Knead very lightly until just smooth, shape into a flat disc and wrap in cling film. Chill for 30 minutes.
3. Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface and use to line a 20cm loose-based fluted flan tin. Prick the pastry base all over with a fork. Chill for a further 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C fan/gas mark 6 and place a baking sheet in the oven to heat up.
4. Line the pastry case with baking paper then fill with ceramic baking beans (see TIP) and bake ‘blind’ on the hot baking sheet for 15 minutes. Remove the paper lining and beans and bake for a further 10-12 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden. Leave to cool completely.
5. To make the filling, beat the mascarpone, vanilla extract and sugar in a large bowl until smooth. Gradually beat in the double cream. Spread the filling in the cold pastry case.
6. Arrange the blueberries, banana slices and strawberries on top of the filling to represent the American stars and stripes flag with a blueberry border. Serve immediately or chill in the fridge until required (only decorate with the fruit 1-2 hours before serving).

If you don’t have ceramic baking beans to weigh the pastry down when baking, use uncooked rice or dried beans.