It’s been a fickle few days in my kitchen. I just can’t decide what to make/bake and when I finally land on something, I get too crazy with it. There were exploding pies, bits of yolk in custard, and tough crust. Le sigh. But! It ended well, my brain stopped being crazy and I went with a classic, in a smaller, hand-hold-able package.
These pies have a flaky, tender, buttery crust, and a syrupy, lightly spiced, blueberry filling. I opted to make these into little hand pies since I never seem to be able to slice a whole pie with any luck…and, individual pies are fun. You get yours, I get mine, and maybe we split another? Instead of the standard whipped cream, I softened a few ounces of goat cheese, mixed with a little honey, and folded it into unsweetened whipped cream. The goat cheese cream has a delicate flavor–slight tang, lush creaminess, sweet honey–it’s really good and pairs so nicely with the jammy pies.
Blueberry Hand Pies
Makes about 16 round, double crust, hand pies.
Crust from Martha Stewart
for the crust I used White Lily brand, a soft wheat flour, if you don’t have it in your area All-Purpose is totally fine. I have made many crusts using All-Purpose flour with excellent results.
2 1/2 cups flour
1 teaspoon salt
1 teaspoon sugar
2 sticks (8ounces) unsalted butter
1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water
egg wash and cinnamon sugar for sprinkling
1 pint blueberries, rinsed
juice of 1/2 lemon
4-6 tablespoons vanilla sugar OR plain sugar plus 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 scant tablespoon cornstarch
a tiny pinch of cinnamon
Goat Cheese Cream:
2 ounces very soft goat cheese
2 teaspoons honey
3/4 cup heavy whipping cream
for the crust:
Cut butter into cubes and freeze while you gather the remaining ingredients.
Fill a glass measurer with a few ice cubes and 1/2 cup water.
In a large bowl whisk together flour, sugar, and salt. Using your fngers or pastry blender, blend cold butter into flour until mixture resembles coarse crumbs–leaving some pea-sized chunks of butter in the mix. A few tablespoons at a time, begin incorporating the ice water–how much depends on how humid it is where you live–just until the crumbs begin to come together when pressed. Turn out dough, knead 1 or 2 times just to combine, divide dough, press into a disc and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate and allow to rest for at least 30 minutes.
for filling and baking:
Preheat oven to 400*F. Line two baking sheets with parchment and set aside.
Make an egg wash with 1 egg beaten with 1 tablespoon milk. Make cinnamon sugar, combining 2 tablespoons sugar with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon. Set both aside.
In a large bowl, combine blueberries, lemon juice, sugar, cinnamon, and cornstarch. Toss to combine.
On a clean, smooth surface dusted with flour, roll out 1 disc of dough at a time, keeping the other in the refrigerator, to about 1/8 inch thickness. Cut rounds of dough using a biscuit cutter–try to get an even number as each pie will require a top and bottom crust. Spoon a small amount of filling into the center of a crust round, brush the edges with egg wash, top with another round, crimp the edges with a fork, brush the top with more wash, sprinkle with cinnamon sugar, and cut a vent in the top–repeat with remaining dough and filling and place on baking sheet with about 1 inch of space between each pie. Bake for 20 minutes until the bottoms and tops are golden brown, cool on a wire rack.
**Note: I like to keep one baking sheet of pies in the freezer while the other bakes. This ensures maximum crust-flaking.
for goat cheese cream:
In large bowl, whip cream to medium peaks. In another bowl, mix goat cheese with honey until combined. Mix in about 1/4 of the whipped cream, to lighten the consistency of the cheese. Fold in the remaining cream. Refrigerate until ready to use. Serve with warm or room temperature pies.