Hand Pies ~ Baked Not Fried

Baked Hand Fruit Pie

I found an awesome pie crust recipe a couple of years back, and an awesome fruit pie filling recipe (just this year), and together, they make some of the best hand fruit pies you will ever have!

I make these on a weekly basis to sell at our local Farmers Market, and sell out every week!  I keep my fruits local, as I am a big fan of supporting other local farmers and not the big guys. Besides, being a farmer, I know how hard it can be to make that buck that we all need to survive! I will buy as much as I can during season and then can or freeze so I have plenty to last the market season, upcoming holidays, my “I want to bake” moods,  and carry me over to next season!

My oldest grandson, and now my daughter in law, help me make these. It’s a fun way to spend the day together, and it is a great feeling knowing that I am passing on a skill, and memories, to the next generation. Especially now that I have class during the day when I should be baking!

 

Baked Hand Fruit Pie

Hand Fruit Pie ready for market

Pie Filling Recipe:

4 C Strawberries
3/4 C Sugar
3/4 C Water
3 TBS Tapioca
1/4 Tsp Salt

  1. Crush 1 cup strawberries, add 3/4 cup water, and boil. Simmer 3 mins.
  2. Strain juice from berries, add enough water to make one cup
  3. Combine sugar, tapioca and salt, mix with fork
  4. Slowly add to juice, stir until smooth
  5. Bring to boil,turn down to simmer, stir until clear and thick, remove from heat
  6. Cool slightly and pour over remaining berries.

*You can substitute Cornstarch for the Tapioca, but be forewarned, you will NOT get the same natural flavor
** I have discovered to make the filling just prior to putting the pies together, as you will soon see. It is best to
work with the filling warm, as heating it a second time tends to make the filling too runny.

 

Strawberry Pie Filling

Strawberry Pie Filling

 

I searched high and low for an easy pie crust recipe that gave me a nice flaky crust, and after several attempts, found one over at Cooks.com, and I am sharing it with you today! This recipe will  yield approx 6 4 oz balls for your hand pies, I make 2 – 3 batches each week.

Pie Crust Recipe:

4 Cups Flour
1/2 Tsp Salt
1 1/2 Cups Crisco
2 Eggs (we use our own fresh eggs from our hens)
1/2 Cup Water
2 Tsp Vinegar (I use white)

  1. Cut in flour, salt and Crisco in a large bowl
  2. Mix egg, water and vinegar in another
  3. Pour liquid into flour mixture, and mix with fork
  4. Use the second egg to make an egg wash to help seal the pies together and to brush on before placing pies in oven. (Egg wash = 1 scrambled egg + a touch of water)

*I mix together with a fork just enough for the liquid to absorb, then use my hands to finish bringing the dough together.

Dough Balls for Pie crusts

4 oz dough balls ready to become pies

As you can see, I like to put my dough balls in between two pieces of Parchment Paper to roll it out. This eliminates the use of extra flour (which can dry out your dough) and makes for an easier clean up. Roll out dough away from you, and turn 1/4 after one or two rolls with the pin. It also helps to keep a round shape if you start the process by using a plate to flatten the dough ball a bit before starting to roll out.

Rolling out dough

Rolling out dough

 

When you have your pie crust rolled out, place on a parchment lined baking sheet, brush egg wash around the edges of the crust, and place your filling in the center. Close the pie, use a fork to press the edges together, and trim off excess crust.

Brush Pie crust with egg wash

Brush Pie crust with egg wash

 

Fill pie crust with filling

Fill pie crust with filling

 

Once you have all your pies on the baking sheet, brush all over with egg wash, sprinkle sugar on top and bake approx 30 minutes in a 350º  oven, or until golden brown. Let cool on sheet for a few minutes and remove to cooling rack to completely cool or serve immediately with ice cream!

Pies fresh from the oven

Pies fresh from the oven (this is why I say to make your filling just before filling the pies)

 

If you have any other ideas as to how to keep the filling from leaking out, please let me know, I am always up for ways to make my baking time quicker and easier! And if you try this recipe, let us know how it turned out for you!

This post is part of my #100daybloggingchallenge