Tourte de Blettes

Apple, Spinach and Pine Nut Pie

Preparation info

  • Difficulty


  • For



Appears in

The Cuisine of the Sun

By Mireille Johnston

Published 1990

  • About

This is a curious blend of apples, raisins, and spinach or Swiss chard (this is what is used in Nice) baked in a light pie. It is one of Nice’s traditional and most beloved desserts, and although it may seem odd to you at first, it will probably become one of the staples for your picnics and buffets. It can be eaten warm or cold.



  • 3 cups unbleached flour
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup sweet butter, softened
  • ½ cup sugar
  • about 1 tablespoon salt


  • 4 large Golden Delicious or Granny Smith apples
  • 3 tablespoons raisins
  • 2 tablespoons dark rum
  • 1 cup cooked and thoroughly drained chopped spinach (2 10-ounce packages frozen chopped spinach or 2 pounds fresh spinach)
  • 4 tablespoons pine nuts
  • ½ cup confectioners’ sugar
  • ¼ to ½ pound bland cheese, such as Gouda or a mild Cheddar, diced
  • 2 beaten eggs grated rind of 1 lemon
  • 2 tablespoons currant jelly
  • 3 tablespoons confectioners’ sugar


Working quickly with the tips of your fingers, mix all the ingredients together on a well-floured board. Pound and stretch the dough away from you with the heel of your hand to be sure all ingredients are well blended. Shape the dough into a ball, cover with a clean cloth, and leave for 2 hours at room temperature.

Peel the apples and cut two of them into small cubes. Put the raisins and rum in a pan and bring to a boil. Cook for 2 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 375°.

In a large bowl, mix the spinach, raisins, apple cubes, pine nuts, sugar, cheese, eggs, and lemon rind. Slice the remaining two apples. Divide the pastry into two unequal parts, the smaller being about a third of the larger amount. Roll the pastry as thin as you can.

Butter a deep mold and spread the larger circle of dough in the bottom, molding it around to fit the bottom and sides. Prick it all over with a fork. Spread the currant jelly on the bottom and add the filling. Cover with the apple slices and then with the other small circle of dough. Fit together smoothly and cut off the excess dough. Prick the top crust with a fork and bake for 30 minutes, or until golden. Remove from the oven and sprinkle with confectioners’ sugar.