Sour Cherry Pie Bars

I’ve really come to love this blogging business. The whole researching, experimenting, baking, photographing, writing and blogging process.

But sometimes, after I bake something and sit down to blog about it, I have absolutely no idea what to say.

I just sit there and stare at the screen, with no anecdote or story to tell you about what I have baked.

Why did I make these sour cherry pie bars? Because late one evening, I was sitting on the couch, and sour cherries came to mind. I can’t even remember why.

I jumped on Google to try and figure out what I could make and this recipe, on Smitten Kitchen, caught my eye.

See? This isn’t a very interesting story.

I know that I’ve made little sour cherry pies recently too. Both recipes were born from the same random urge to buy some sour cherries and put them into something baked. And we all love pie.

Inspired by Martha Stewart, via Smitten Kitchen.

So we don’t have fresh sour cherries in Melbourne. Particularly not at this time of year (that awkwardly cold spring stage). I used sour cherries from a jar and strained them. But please don’t throw the juice away. Drink it. It tastes like compote. Yum.

For the pastry
2 1/4 cups plain flour
1/4 cup + 2 tbsp caster sugar
200g cold unsalted butter, cubed (1/2 cup + 1 tbsp)
pinch of salt
1 egg yolk
4 tbsp cold water

For the sour cherry filling
2 x 600g jars of sour cherries, drained
3/4 cup sugar
4 tbsp cornflour
1 egg, to make eggwash

To make the dough, put the flour, sugar, butter and salt in a food processor or electric mixer fitted with paddle attachment. Mix on low speed until mixture resembles coarse breadcrumbs.

Add the egg yolk and cold water. Continue to mix on low until a dough forms. Gather the dough together and form it into a disc. Wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Meanwhile, get your filling ready.

Preheat the oven to 180 C. Line a 9×13 inch tin with parchment paper.

In a large bowl, mix together the sour cherries, sugar and cornflour. Set aside.

Take the dough out of the fridge and divide it into two equal halves.

On a well floured surface, roll out one half of the dough into a rectangular shape, about 11×15 inches, so it is big enough to line the base and sides of your pan. Gently roll it onto your rolling pin, then unroll the dough into the pan.

Fill the pastry case with the sour cherry filling.

On a well floured surface, roll out the other half of dough into the same shape and size. Roll the pastry up onto your rolling pin, and unroll it over the sour cherry filling.

Fold in the excess pastry from the sides, roughly. Prick the entire top of the pie with a fork.

Beat the egg with a little water and brush it over the top of the pie. Bake for 40-50 minutes. Makes about 15 bars.

30 Thoughts on “Sour Cherry Pie Bars

  1. beautiful photos, looks tasty

  2. have you tried to make thicker dough? Tastes uberdelicious 😉

  3. thicker dough with cherry on top :)

  4. I have those moments too! I sit and think of what i have to write! These look gorgeous!

  5. Stunning and unique presentation for pie that I am really enjoying in your photos. I wonder if a creamy sweet potato or squash type pie would work in this fashion. Thoughts? Might be a nice change-up for the coming holidays…



    • Hey Heather! I live in Australia and we don’t really bake with pumpkin or sweet potato or squash; we see them as a savoury food and roast them with chicken and make things like pumpkin soup! However, when I was in the States I had pumpkin pie and I loved it. I think these pie bars would be great with a cinnamony pumpkin or sweet potato filling. You could even do a lattice crust on top to show off the filling and maybe top it with thick double cream… YUM.

    • Rachael on July 19, 2014 at 9:06 pm said:

      You can easily convert any pie recipe to this “slab” style pie. I have done cherry, blueberry, pumpkin, and apple. It is great for parties as these are less messy to eat than the thicker filling of a traditional pie. My favorite part is that you get much more pastry to filling in each bite. :)

      Sometimes I will cut decorative patterns into the top crust before rolling it onto the pin. If you make each cut small the pattern will survive the transfer and look lovely after baking.

  6. It happens to me too. Sometimes I bake something for no reason and then I try to write something about it and then no story comes to mind. Story or no story, those bars look delicious!

  7. Cuuuuuuute photos! <3

    • You’re kidding, right? Because I am totally in love with your blog and all your photos. And how your cat hangs around as you photograph because my puppy does the same thing. Their noses are amazing.
      You’re vegan, right? I have a great vegan chocolate chip cookie recipe if you want to make it! I’d love to see what you do with the photos.

  8. Sometimes a recipe just sounds good- no story needed! This one is a beauty

  9. Looooove this! and your pictures are so beautiful! So happy to have found your blog

  10. your photography is stunning!!

    saw this on FG :)

  11. Ryan Harding on November 13, 2011 at 9:28 pm said:

    I told my mum about this recipe and we loved it! 😀

  12. Where do you find sour cherries?

  13. Ashley Zemina on March 31, 2013 at 11:49 am said:

    I came across your blog on Pinterest, and LOVE your recipes! I have a question though, what could I substitute for corn flour??

  14. Marilyn on April 7, 2013 at 11:20 am said:

    Your squares remind me of how my Grandma made pie Interesting that you don’t do pumpkin pie in Australia. Do they sell cans of pumpkin there. My son is moving to Brisbane. Maybe ill have to send a can with him

    • Hi Marilyn! It’s nice to mix it up sometimes when making pie :-)
      We don’t have cans of pumpkin here. Hence the lack of pumpkin pie, probably. We eat pumpkin as a savoury, roasted with dinner or cooked down with onions and pureed into a soup. You’ll probably have to send a few cans with your son, because he won’t find them here! :-)

      • Marilyn on April 11, 2013 at 1:08 pm said:

        Hello. Is there anything else I should suggest for him to bring.? He will be living in Brisbane and coming from San Francisco . Also I saw questions on what corn flour is and found that cornstarch is the same thing. Many thanks

  15. Pingback: Sour Cherry Pie | Melly's Baking

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