1 cup (250 mL) pitted dates, finely chopped
6 figs, finely chopped
1/2 cup (125 mL) finely chopped walnuts
2 tablespoons (30 mL) granulated sugar
2/3 cup (150 mL) milk
1/4 cup (50 mL) brandy (optional)
1/4 cup (50 mL) granulated sugar
3 tablespoons (45 mL) cornstarch
1/2 teaspoon (2 mL) vanilla
1 cup (250 mL) milk
1 baked 9-inch (23 cm) pie crust
Juice of 1 lemon
1-2 tablespoons (15-30 mL) grated orange zest
To make fruit layer: In a medium saucepan, combine dates, figs, walnuts, 2 tablespoons (30 mL) sugar, and 2/3 cup (150 mL) milk. Cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until fruit is softened and all liquid is absorbed. Remove from heat and stir in brandy, if using. Set aside to cool.
To make custard layer: In a medium saucepan, whisk together the egg, 1/4 cup (50 mL) sugar, the cornstarch and vanilla. Gradually whisk in 1 cup (250 mL) milk, and cook over low heat, stirring constantly, until thickened. Cool slightly.
Pour custard into pie crust, and smooth evenly. Cover this layer with the fruit mixture, spooning on small amounts at a time until evenly distributed. Top with lemon juice, randomly piercing the surface with a skewer to allow juice to seep in. Sprinkle grated orange zest evenly over top. Refrigerate until ready to serve. Makes 6 or 8 servings.