Easy As Pie….?!?!

by Becki D on April 19, 2010

What a stupid saying!  I’m here to tell ya, there’s nothing easy about pie!  Well, nothing easy about pie dough, anyway.

I need to take this time to let you know that I do not care for baked fruit.  No apple pie, peach cobbler, or blueberry crumble for me, thanks.  So what possessed me to spend many hours of my life making miniature strawberry pies, you ask?

  1. I saw them over at Rainy Day Gal‘s site, and fell in love with their cuteness.
  2. David loves strawberries, and he IS a fan of baked fruit – so much that he would rather have that than a chocolate dessert almost any day.  Total weirdo, I know.
  3. I really wanted to take Lauren to the local strawberry farm and pick berries, so I needed to have something creative to do with all those strawberries once I got them home.

The strawberry hunting picking was an absolutely great time for Lauren and her little cousin.  I highly recommend it for those with toddlers!

Snacking incognito!

I could post a million pictures of my kid being adorable with strawberries, but I shall refrain.  For now.

So without further ado, I give you miniature strawberry pies!  Here again is the link to RDG’s post: mini strawberry pies.

Miniature Strawberry Pies by Rainy Day Gal

Crust Ingredients:

  • 1 cup cake flour
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3/4 cup cold butter, cut into 1/2″ cubes
  • 2 lightly beaten eggs

Crust Instructions:

  • Mix the flours and salt together in the bowl of your stand mixer fitted with the paddle attachment. (I do not own a stand mixer – just my trusty hand mixer, which only has the beaters.  So I improvised on the next step and used a pastry cutter to cut the butter into the flour mixture.  It got me by.)

Old school tool.

  • Add the cold butter cubes and mix on low for 1 minute, then add the eggs and mix on medium low until the dough forms a cohesive mass.
  • Pat the dough into a disc, wrap in cellophane and place in the fridge.

Filling Ingredients:

  • 1 1/2 lbs fresh strawberries, to yield about 4 cups halved strawberries

My vote: perfect just like this!

  • 1/4 cup white sugar
  • 1/2 cup brown sugar (not packed)
  • 1/2 cup flour
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch
  • 1 dash cinnamon (If I make these again, I will probably use several dashes of cinnamon.  Maybe even a tablespoon!)
  • 1 dash nutmeg
  • 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
  • I went ahead and added 1/2 cup sour cream to the mixture, too.  Why?  Because I saw sour cream in another strawberry pie recipe and thought it sounded good, that’s why!

Filling Instructions:

  • In a small bowl mix together the dry ingredients.
  • In a larger bowl, toss the strawberries with the vanilla extract (and the sour cream, if you’re like me) and then toss with the dry ingredients.

Assembling The Pies:

  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Place a cupcake pan in the freezer.
  • On a clean surface, roll out 3/4 of your pie dough until it is about 1/8″ thick. (The whole “clean surface” thing did not work out for me.  AT ALL!  I had to flour, flour, flour my rolling surface so the dough would not stick.  And then I kept putting it in the fridge to let it firm back up, anyway.  Like I said, me and pie doe = not good friends.  Ah well.)
  • Return the remaining 1/4 of the dough to the fridge.
  • Cut circles in the rolled-out dough using a round that is approximately 3″ in diameter to make a total of 9 circles. (I wanted to fill a whole cupcake pan, so I made my dough stretch and made 12 circles.  However, this did not leave me with much dough leftover for criss-cross decorations on top of the pies.)
  • Remove cupcake pan from fridge and lightly grease 9 of the cups with butter.
  • Gently press each dough round into greased cups, coming all the way up the edges and leaving a small rim of dough at the top.
  • Patch any holes with a pinch of extra dough from the refrigerator.
  • If at any time you’re working with the dough and it becomes sticky, wrap and place in the fridge or freezer for a few minutes before continuing. (Again, this happened to me many times.  And I floured my surface.  Good luck to you!)
  • Overfill each pie with strawberry mixture.
  • Roll out remaining dough and slice into 1/4″ to 1/3″ strips.
  • Lay strips of dough across each pie in a criss-cross pattern, pinching each seam together as you go along.
  • Place cupcake pan on top of baking sheet and bake for 30-40 minutes.
  • If the crust is ever becoming too brown, cover pies with aluminum foil and continue baking. (I did end up covering mine with foil for the last 10 minutes.  No big deal!)
  • Let cool in pan for 30 minutes, then remove and let pies cool completely on a wire rack before serving.
  • Makes 9 pies. (Or 12, if you do like me.)

Messy, but still CUTE!

Very good with coffee, much better with the (not pictured) whipped cream!

The verdict?  Not surprisingly, I wasn’t in love with the pies, but my family sure was!  My brother likes them the best of anything I’ve tried out on him so far! David really liked the filling, but he said the crust needed to be a little sweeter. So if you know how to do that, you might want to take his recommendation into consideration. All in all, I’m definitely glad I tried them out, and I really appreciated all the compliments these little guys won me, so thank you, Jenny!

Hope you all have a great week!


From me, to you!

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