Greengage and Lime Sponge Pie

This recipes comes from Gary Rhodes – Around Britain. First published in 1996.


For the pie

  • 175-225g sweet shortcrust pastry
  • 400g fresh greengages, halved and stoned
  • Icing sugar
  • 2-3 tbsps greengage jam or lime marmalade

For the sponge

  • 50g unsalted butter
  • 50g caster sugar
  • 1 egg
  • 50g plain flour (or use self-raising flour for a lighter finish)
  • Grated zest and juice of 1 lime

To glaze and finish

  • 1 tbsp greengage jam or lime marmalade
  • 2 tbsps water
  • Icing sugar for dusting


Pre-heat the oven to 200 degrees C (400 degrees F or gas mark 6).

Grease a 20cm (8 inch) flan ring. Line the flan ring with the shortcrust pastry, leaving any excess pastry over the edge of the ring. Line with greaseproof paper and add in baking beans or rice. Cook in the pre-heated oven for 20 minutes. The greaseproof paper and beans or rice can now be removed and excess pastry trimmed off.

If the greengages are very ripe, then they are ready to use. If they feel firm and under-ripe, then sit them on a baking tray, skin-side down and dust generously with icing sugar. These can now be cooked and softened in the pre-heated oven for 4-6 minutes.

To make the sponge, cream together the butter and the sugar. Beat the egg and then add it slowly to the butter mix. Fold in the flour with the zest of lime. The lime juice can now be added to finish the mix.

Reduce the oven temperature to 180 degrees C (350 degrees F, gas mark 4).

To make the pie, spoon the greengage jam or lime marmalade into the pastry and spread over the base. The sponge mix can now be spread into the case. Sit the greengages skin-side up on top of the sponge mix. This can now be baked in the pre-heated oven for 35-40 minutes. As the pie is cooking, the sponge will rise around the fruit.

Once cooked, remove from the oven and leave for 10 minutes before serving. This dish eats very well warm or cold.