Sweet Corn Custard and Pluot Pie

Source: Ranyee Chiang, Pie Contest Winner

Recipe Type: | Seasons: ,

This pie won first prize in CUESA’s Fall Pie Contest at Jack London Square Farmers Market Harvest Festival on October 30, 2016.


Sweet Corn Custard

3 ears corn
2 cups cream
⅓ cup sugar
¾ teaspoon vanilla extract
4 egg yolks
1 egg
1 tablespoon flour


One to three days in advance, cut the kernels off the corn. Combine the cream, sugar, and vanilla in a pot. Add the kernels and the cobs and heat until it reaches a gentle boil. Turn off heat and let it cool. Refrigerate the corn and cream mixture until you are ready to make the pie.

Strain the corn kernels and cobs, squeezing the kernels and cobs to get as much cream as possible. Save the cream and discard the kernels and cobs. Add the egg yolks, egg, and flour to cream and whisk.

Pluot Filling

8 pluots (firm and slightly tart ones are best)
¼ cup brown sugar (can adjust based on sweetness of fruit)
teaspoon lemon juice (can adjust based on sweetness of fruit)
2 teaspoons tapioca starch
2 teaspoons corn starch
2 tablespoons water
½ teaspoon lemon zest
½ teaspoon vanilla extract


Remove the pits and slice the pluots. Mix the pluots, brown sugar, and lemon juice in a pot. Heat the fruit until it begins to soften. 

Mix corn starch and tapioca starch with water in a bowl. Add to the softened fruit. Continue to cook until the filling begins to bubble. Add lemon zest and refrigerate pluot filling until ready to assemble and bake the pie.


Based on a method from J. Kenji Lopez-Alt.


7.5 ounces flour
½ tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon sugar
1½ sticks butter
3½ tablespoons cold water


Cut the cold butter into small pieces. Combine two-thirds of the flour, sugar, salt, and butter. Pulse in a food processor until the mixture forms lumpy clumps.

Pour the mixture into a bowl with plenty of room for mixing. Add the remaining flour and cut the flour into the flour-butter mixture with a knife until the flour coats the clumps. Add the cold water and fold the mixture with a spatula until the dough holds together as a ball.

Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 2 hours.

Roll out the dough, place in the pie pan. Add any decorative fluting to the edges. Refrigerate the prepared crust while you preheat the oven to 350°F.

To pre-bake the crust, line the crust with aluminum foil and add dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 1 hour or until bottom crust is a light golden color. If the edges of the crust become too brown, fold the foil down to cover the edges.

Crumb Topping


4 tablespoons butter
½ cup flour
¼ cup cornmeal
¼ cup brown sugar
½ teaspoon salt
⅛ teaspoon lemon zest
3 teaspoons cold water
1 teaspoon vanilla


Cut the cold butter into small pieces.

Combine the flour, cornmeal, brown sugar, salt, and lemon zest in a food processor. Add the butter and pulse until the butter is the size of rice grains. Mix in the cold water and vanilla until everything is evenly moistened. Refrigerate until ready to assemble and bake the pie.


Preheat the oven to 275°F.

Pour the corn cream and egg mixture into the pre-baked crust. Bake until the custard is just set, about 30 to 45 minutes. The edge of the crust may need to be covered with aluminum foil to keep it from browning too quickly.

Preheat the oven to 375°F.

Pour the pluot filling on top of custard. Sprinkle the crumb topping on top of the pluots. Bake until the crumb topping is golden brown and the pluot filling is bubbling, 30 to 45 minutes.

Allow pie to cool for at least 4 hours before serving.

Farmers Market Ingredients