Saturday, December 5

apple hand pies!

Why am I obsessed with these? I don't know. Maybe it's because I love miniature food, or maybe it's those peanut butter and jelly things, or maybe it's because the lovely Nicole Lang talks about them all the time and I'm jealous. But at any rate, I've been desperate to try making them FOR EV AH and I finally got my chance on Thanksgiving. Since I was flying in the same day, I didn't have time to do anything fancy. So I went for classic apple pie. And they were freaking delicious. If I do say so myself.

making hand pies

Apple Cinnamon Hand Pies

Pie dough
Pastry flour* 1 lb 4 oz
Butter, cold 14 oz
Water, cold 6 oz
Salt 2 t
Sugar 1 oz (even if you're not making a sweet pie, this will help give the crust a nice color)
*all-purpose works too, but it seems to absorb more water, so you might have to increase the quantity of water a bit.

1 Chop the butter into chunks and chill it along with the water. You want this to be very cold. Working in a cooler room will help you out too.
2 Sift the dry ingredients together in a bowl.
3 Rub the cold butter into the dry ingredients with your fingers until it is about the size of halved walnuts. You can also use a food processor or a pastry blender for this, but doing it with your hands is so much more FUN
4 Add the cold water in a well. Reserve a little; if the mixture is too dry as you're mixing, add the rest.
5 Mix just until the dough comes together. It will be a little floury and look kinda crappy but don't keep kneading it! Put. the. dough. down.
6 Flatten into a disk, cover in plastic, and chill, at least 30–60 minutes. While it's resting you can make the filling:

Apple filling
Apples, sliced* 2 lbs
Butter 1 oz
Sugar 3 oz

Cold water 2 oz
Cornstarch .75 oz

Sugar 3.5 oz
Salt 1/5 t
Cinnamon 1 1/2 t
Ground ginger 1 t
Nutmeg 1/4 t
Lemon juice 2 t
Butter .25 oz
*some apples are better than others; you want ones that have plenty of acidity and hold their shape well when cooked. I used granny smith and they were perfect. I peeled them, but you don't have to.

1 Sauté the apples in the first quantity of butter until slightly soft. Add the sugar as they cook to draw out the juices.
2 Make a slurry with the cold water and the starch. Add to the apples and bring to a boil. Cook until thickened.
3 Remove from the heat. Taste and add the second quantity of sugar if needed. Add the remaining ingredients and cool. If you fill the pies while the filling is still hot you'll melt the butter and annoy yourself, so just wait.

Forming the pies

1 Once your dough is nice and firm, get it out and knead it just a couple of times to bring it together.
2 Roll it out to about 1/8" thick. Cut circles (mine were about 5" in diameter; I just used a bowl that was handy for tracing purposes).
3 Add a bit of filling in the middle of the circles and fold them in half, sealing the edges with a little water and then pressing them with a fork. Re-rolling this dough will make it kind of tough, but you can use the scraps to make funny-shaped hand pies if you want.
4 Egg wash them and sprinkle with a little coarse sugar if you want.
5 Bake at about 400 degrees until golden brown.


reptilianskiesandpeacockeyes said...

does this dough recipe make two pie shells?

Laura said...

yeah, you should be able to get two out of it if you roll carefully. it definitely makes one plus a lattice and some scraps. or you could always double it and freeze the extra shells.

Anonymous said...

BTW, I would hyphenate whenever possible "FOR-EV-AH". Otherwise, I'm like: who is "EV" and "AH"? Do I know them? Ellen Vaughn? Allison Houghman? Who are these people?

--Guess who?