Hand Pies

Posted on: Thursday, July 26, 2012

To bypass summer traffic, we take the scenic detour down Route 133. Turning off the exit, we embark down Memory Lane passing our old Cape Ann League rival high schools, home-churned ice cream stands in Rowley, seafood huts in Ipswich and antique shops in Essex. En route, it’s always exciting to stumble upon a portable farm stand showcasing the daily harvest.

With an abundance of fresh peaches and berries tucked in our trunk, we create edible art in the form of hand pies. The rustic pastries are ideal for a summer picnic. They’re simply adorable, easily transportable, and adaptable to any kind of filling. We assemble an array of flavors- some plain peach, others with the addition of ginger, blueberries and blackberries.

Peach and Berry Hand Pies

4 diced peaches
1 T lemon juice
1/2 t grated fresh ginger
1 t vanilla extract
3 T granulated sugar
pinch of salt
2 T flour
handful of berries (we used blueberries and blackberries)
frozen pie crust, thawed (feel free to use homemade!)
1 beaten egg
extra sugar for sprinkling

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Remove the two pie dough crusts out of the refrigerator and let stand at room temperature. In a bowl, combine the peaches, elected berries, lemon juice, ginger, vanilla, sugar and salt and let macerate for 15-20 minutes. Stir in the flour.

On a floured surface, roll out the pie dough. Using a 5-inch circle (we used a small ice cream bowl), trace and cut out the circles in the dough. Add a spoonful of the fruit mixture to the center of each little pie and gently fold the circle to form a half moon. Using a fork, adhere the edges together.

Lay each crescent onto a parchment-lined baking sheet. Brush each pie with the beaten egg and a light dusting of sugar. Before baking, pierce each pie with a knife. Cook for 20-22 minutes until golden. Makes approximately 12 small pies.

These handfuls of fresh fruit encased in a buttery, flaky crust are perfect still warm from the oven with a dollop of vanilla ice cream, or served cool wrapped in wax paper packed for a picnic. We look forward to making them all summer with whatever we can find at our next farmstand stop!


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