Why It Works
- A blend of fruits unites sweet, sour, tender, and creamy elements in a single pie.
- Tapioca starch forms a light, clear gel that's never cloudy, slimy, or gloppy.
- A 4:1 ratio of fruit to sugar raises tapioca's gelatinization point so the filling and crust will cook at the same rate, meaning you never have to trade a thick filling for a soggy crust!
When mixing things up with a variety of fruits in a pie, you have no better partner in the kitchen than a scale—particularly if you want to experiment beyond the suggestions below. If measuring with cups, stick to the listed ingredients, and take care not to pile the fruit too high. Whether you choose my blend or your own, the filling bakes up sweet-tart and a little jammy under a golden, flaky crust.
- 3 medium plums, apricots, or nectarines (about 12 ounces; 340g)
- 9 ounces pitted cherries (1 2/3 heaping cups; 255g), from about 12 ounces whole fruit (2 1/4 heaping cups; 340g)
- 6 ounces fresh blueberries, blackberries, or raspberries (1 cup; 170g)
- 4 ounces Cape gooseberries, currants, or fresh cranberries (1/2 cup; 110g)
- 7 ounces sugar (1 cup; 195g)
- 1/2 teaspoon (2g) Diamond Crystal kosher salt; for table salt, use half as much by volume or use the same weight
- 1 1/2 ounces tapioca starch (1/3 cup plus 1 teaspoon; 40g), such as Bob's Red Mill (see note)
- Old-Fashioned Flaky Pie Dough, rolled and chilled as per the directions for a double crust
- For the Egg Wash (optional):
- 1 large egg
- 1 large egg yolk
- 1/2 ounce heavy cream (1 tablespoon; 15g)
- 1/8 teaspoon (1/2g) Diamond Crystal kosher salt; for table salt, use half as much by volume or use the same weight
For the Filling: Wash plums (no need to peel), cut into 1/2-inch slices, and measure out 9 ounces (1 1/2 cups; 255g) in a large bowl. Add pitted cherries, blueberries, and Cape gooseberries, or whatever mix of fruit you prefer, to bring the total weight to 28 ounces (790g; volume will vary). Toss with sugar, salt, and tapioca starch, folding with a flexible spatula until well combined. Scrape into prepared pie shell and top with remaining dough, as a solid sheet, a lattice, a herringbone, or checkerboard. Trim away excess dough and refrigerate to ensure top crust is completely chilled, about 30 minutes. Meanwhile, adjust oven rack to lower-middle position and preheat to 400°F.
For the Egg Wash (if using): Whisk egg, egg yolk, cream, and salt in a small bowl. Brush over chilled top crust in a thin, even layer. This will give the crust a glossy, golden sheen, but is not necessary in any way.
Place chilled pie on a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet. Bake until crust is golden, about 1 hour, then loosely cover with tented foil. (Alternatively, an empty baking sheet can be placed on topmost rack of oven to serve as a shield.) Continue baking until filling is bubbling even in the very center of the pie, about 15 minutes more. If crust completely covers filling, bake until pie reaches an internal temperature of 212°F on a digital thermometer.
To Serve: Cool pie until center of filling is no warmer than 85°F on a digital thermometer, about 3 hours depending on the type of pie plate. (Above that temperature, filling will be runny and thin.) Slice into wedges with a sharp knife, pressing firmly against bottom and sides of pie plate to ensure under-crust is completely cut. Wrapped in foil, leftovers will keep up to 3 days at room temperature; warm 10 minutes in a 350°F oven to revive crust before serving.
This recipe works best with fruits similar to those listed below, rather than wildcards such as apples, figs, or melons.
Due to disparate sourcing practices, tapioca starch manufactured in Asia may be derived from plants other than cassava, which have different gelling properties. Look for products that mention cassava by name on the packaging, such as Bob's Red Mill.
Active time will fluctuate depending on the complexity of crust design.