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Cran-Apricot Surprise Pie

in quick and easy whole grain dairy free gluten free overnight guaranteed classic

Author:

So what's the surprise? A layer of cheesecake filling beneath the fruit and streusel that form the bulk of this tasty pie. Fresh cranberries and dried apricots are simmered together to make a bright-red, tangy-sweet topping for the cheesecake, and the whole is finished with a walnut streusel. Serve this at Thanksgiving for a total departure from the norm, but one that still stays faithful to that holiday's signature fruit, the cranberry.

At a glance

Prep
Bake
Total
Yield
one 9" pie, 8 to 10 servings

Ingredients

Choose your measure:

Crust

Cheese Filling

  • 1 cup (one 8-ounce package) cream cheese, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 2 teaspoons vanilla extract
  • 1/8 teaspoon salt
  • 1 large egg, at room temperature

Fruit Filling

  • heaping 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries
  • 1 cup slivered dried apricots or coarsely chopped dried apricots
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 2/3 cup water
  • 1 cup granulated sugar
  • 1/8 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • pinch of salt
  • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter

Topping

Instructions

  1. To make the crust: In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flours, buttermilk powder, salt, and baking powder.
  2. Cut the butter into small cubes, and work it into the dry ingredients (using your fingers, a pastry blender or fork, or a mixer) until the dough is unevenly crumbly.
  3. Sprinkle in the orange juice, then up to 4 tablespoons water, continuing to mix until the dough is cohesive. Grab a handful, if it holds together willingly, and doesn't seem at all dry or crumbly, you've added enough liquid.
  4. Shape the dough into a disk. Roll its edges along a floured work surface (as though the disk were a wheel), in order to smooth them out. Pat the disk until it's about 1" thick, wrap it in plastic wrap, and refrigerate overnight, or for up to 3 days.
  5. Preheat the oven to 375°F.
  6. Remove the dough from the refrigerator. Allow it to warm a bit and become flexible, 15 to 30 minutes.
  7. Flour your work surface, and roll the dough into an 11" to 12" circle. Transfer the dough to a 9" regular (not deep-dish) pie pan that's at least 1 1/4" deep.
  8. To make the cheesecake filling: Gently beat together the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, salt, and egg, beating slowly until the mixture is nearly smooth; a few lumps are OK. Set it aside.
  9. To make the cheesecake filling: Gently beat together the cream cheese, sugar, vanilla, salt, and egg, beating slowly until the mixture is nearly smooth. A few lumps are OK. Set it aside.
  10. To make the fruit filling: In a large saucepan, combine the cranberries, dried apricots, lemon juice, water, and sugar.
  11. Bring the mixture to a boil over medium heat, and simmer vigorously until the liquid is syrupy and nearly all absorbed, 18 to 25 minutes. Stir frequently towards the end.
  12. Remove from the heat, and stir in the extracts, salt, and butter.
  13. To make the topping: In a medium-sized bowl, whisk together the flour, oats, nuts, salt, sugar, cinnamon, and baking powder. Stir in the vanilla.
  14. Cut the butter into small cubes, and work it into the dry ingredients, until the mixture is evenly crumbly.
  15. To assemble and bake the pie: Remove the crust from the refrigerator. Spoon the cheese filling into the bottom. Gently dollop the fruit filling on top. Sprinkle with the topping, spreading it evenly over the fruit.
  16. Bake the pie for 45 minutes, until it's bubbly and the streusel and crust are golden brown.
  17. Cover and refrigerate any leftover pie for up to 5 days.