Saturday, November 20, 2021

Mini Apple Hand Pies


Mini Apple Hand Pies
Adapted from: Butternut Bakery

Pie filling
1 box store bought pie dough, containing 2 sheets
2 tbsp unsalted butter
2 1/2 cups finely chopped granny smith, fuji or honeycrisp apples (about 2 large apples)*see note
1/4 cup light brown sugar, packed
1 tsp ground cinnamon
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1/2 tsp cornstarch, mixed with 1 tbsp water

Cinnamon Sugar
1 large egg
1/2 cup granulated sugar
1 tsp ground cinnamon

*Be sure to use really good, flavorful apples. I would do one green apple and one red apple or any good organic apple. The majority of the flavor for these pies comes from the apple. You don't really need the juices, just fill with plenty of apples.

Remove the pie dough from the refrigerator and allow the sheets to come to room temp while you make the filling.

In a saucepan over medium heat, melt down the butter. Once melted, mix in the apples, brown sugar, cinnamon, and lemon juice. Heat for about 10 minutes, or until the apples are just tender. Try not to overcook, keep close to 10 minutes. 

Mix together the cornstarch and water in a small dish and pour into the pot with the apples. Stir and heat for about 30 seconds. It will thicken just slightly, it won't be swimming in juices. Remove from heat and allow the filling to cool while we prep the pie dough.

Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F and line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.

Lightly dust your surface with flour and unroll one of the pie sheets. Use a rolling pin to gently smooth the surface, just enough to smooth out any wrinkles and ridges. 

Using an apple-shaped cookie cutter or a glass cup (mine was 3.5 inches in diameter), cut out your apples in the pie dough. Roll out the scraps to cut out a few more apples. You should be able to get about 8-10 apples per sheet.

Transfer these apples to the refrigerator while you cut out the other sheet.
Now place half of the apples on the baking sheet, spaced evenly apart. If you can’t fit all apples, leave the excess in the refrigerator and bake after the first batch is done. 

Fill the center of each apple with a tablespoon of the filling, leaving a small border around the edge.

Beat the egg with about 2 teaspoons of water. Brush the bare border of each filled apple with the egg wash.

To the other half of the apples, cut 4 slits in the center as shown in the photos.

Place the vented apples on top of the filled apples and gently press down on the seems to seal the pies shut. Then crimp the edges with a fork and brush the surface of each apple with plenty of egg wash.

In a small dish, mix together the cinnamon and sugar. Sprinkle about 1 teaspoon of the cinnamon sugar on top of each apple.

Bake for 20 minutes. Allow the apples to cool on the baking sheet for about 5 minutes, then transfer to a cooling rack. 

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