Three of the best Fourth of July pies

Peanut butter chocolate pie (pictured above)

Prep 30 min
Cook 10 min
Chill 2 hr +
Serves 8-10

For the crust
200g Oreo cookies
80g salted peanuts
2 tbsp butter, melted

For the filling
195g cream cheese, at room temperature
105g icing sugar
190g peanut butter, room temperature, sugar/salt-free if possible
100g milk chocolate
175g whipping cream

For the ganache
50g milk chocolate
50g 70% dark chocolate
6 tbsp whipping cream

For the topping
50g milk chocolate
50g salted peanuts

To make the pastry, heat the oven to 180C/350F/gas 4. In a food processor, pulse the cookies and peanuts to fine crumbs. Mix in the butter, then press into a 20cm springform baking tin. Bake for 10 minutes then set aside to cool.

In a bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar until creamy, then beat in the peanut butter. Melt the milk chocolate over a bain marie and let it cool to lukewarm, then whisk into the peanut butter cream.

Beat the whipping cream until fluffy, then fold into the peanut butter and chocolate mixture. Pour into the pie shell, smoothing the surface with a spatula. Refrigerate the pie for at least two hours, and preferably overnight.

To make the ganache, chop all the chocolate and put it in a bowl. Heat the cream in a small saucepan until it is quite hot but not boiling. Pour over the chocolate, let it stand for 30 seconds, then stir until smooth. Leave to cool and thicken at room temperature, then spread over the pie.

To finish, shave the milk chocolate over the ganache. Chop the peanuts and sprinkle over the pie to serve.

Banoffee pie

Prep 10 min
Chill 20 min +
Serves 6–8

For the crust
200g digestive biscuits (sweet wholemeal cookies) or Graham Crackers
50g pretzels
60g butter, melted

For the filling
250g tinned caramel or dulce de leche
2 bananas, sliced
250ml whipping cream, whipped
Good-quality dark chocolate, to garnish

Put the biscuits and pretzels in a food processor and whizz to fine crumbs. Add the melted butter and process briefly.

Press the biscuit mixture into the bottom of a greased 20cm springform cake tin and put in the refrigerator to set for at least 20 minutes.

Spread the caramel over the biscuit base, top with the banana slices, then cover with the whipped cream. Grate the dark chocolate over the cream and serve immediately.

Blueberry and lemon pie

Prep 10 min
Chill 20 min +
Serves 6–8

For the crust
200g digestive biscuits (sweet wholemeal cookies) or Graham Crackers
50g pretzels
60g butter, melted

For the filling
250g tinned caramel or dulce de leche
2 bananas, sliced
250ml whipping cream, whipped
Good-quality dark chocolate, to garnish

Put the biscuits and pretzels in a food processor and whizz to fine crumbs. Add the melted butter and process briefly.

Press the biscuit mixture into the bottom of a greased 20cm springform cake tin and put in the refrigerator to set for at least 20 minutes.

Spread the caramel over the biscuit base, top with the banana slices, then cover with the whipped cream. Grate the dark chocolate over the cream and serve immediately.

Blueberry and lemon pie

Prep 1-2 hr
Cook 1 hr
Serves 8

For the crust
300g plain flour, plus more for dusting
2 tsp sugar
1 tsp salt
450g very cold butter, cubed
6 tbsp iced water

For the filling
550g blueberries, washed and dried
100-200g sugar, to taste, plus more for sprinkling
2 tbsp cornflour, plus 1 tsp
extra
1 pinch salt
½ tsp ground cinnamon
1 pinch ground allspice or nutmeg
Juice and zest of 1 lemon
2 tbsp butter, cubed
Milk, for glazing

Whisk the flour, sugar and salt in a large bowl. Work in the butter with your fingertips, to get pea-sized lumps throughout. Mix in the water with a wooden spoon until a workable dough clumps together.

Halve the dough and lightly press into discs, then wrap separately in clingfilm and refrigerate for 30 minutes.

On a floured surface, roll one disc to 2-3mm thick, to line a 20cm pie dish, then chill in the fridge. Roll out the other disc for the lid and put on a floured, flat baking sheet and put this in the fridge, too.

Heat the oven to 230C/450F/gas 8. Gently toss the blueberries with the sugar, cornflour, salt and spices in a large bowl. Stir in the lemon zest and juice, then pour the filling into the pie crust. Dot with the butter, cover with the lid, then crimp and decorate the edges with a fork.

Put on a baking sheet, brush with milk and sprinkle with sugar. Cut vents in the lid to allow steam to escape. Bake for 10 minutes, then reduce the heat to 180C/350F/gas 4 and bake for another 40-50 minutes, until the crust is golden brown. Cool completely on a rack – about an hour – before serving, to let the filling set.