I love pie, but to be honest, I don't love making WHOLE pies, or whole cakes for that matter. Small. I like to keep it small. I get nervous, all the time. What if it doesn't taste good? What if I mess something up? Well, when you make a WHOLE pie, you can't exactly cut into it before you serve it to your guests or at a dinner party. You have to wait it out. Sweat it out. Anxiously await the first slice being cut. The first bite being taken. So whats the solution? MINI PIE COOKIES. If you make minis, you can taste 'em before its time! Yay! Best of both worlds.
FOR THE DOUGH /
2 ½ cups flour
1 tbsp. sugar
1 tsp. salt
2 sticks unsalted butter, very cold
We are going to make this dough exactly the same way we made the dough in the Autumn Veggie pies I made for Thanksgiving.
DOUGH DIRECTIONS /
1 / Fill a one cup liquid measuring cup with water, and drop in a few ice cubes; set it aside.
2 / In a large bowl, whisk together flour, sugar and salt.
3 / Dice two sticks of very cold unsalted butter into ½ inch pieces.
4 / Sprinkle the butter cubes over the flour and begin working them in with your hands. Redistribute the mixture as needed so all parts are worked evenly, really get in there with your hands. When all of the butter pieces are the size of tiny peas stop.
5 / Drizzle ½ cup of the ice-cold water (but not the cubes) over the butter and flour mixture. Using a rubber (silicon) spatula, gather the dough together. You’ll probably need an additional ¼ cup of cold water to bring it together, but add it a tablespoon at a time. Once you’re pulling large clumps with the spatula, take it out and get your hands in there. Gather the disparate damp clumps together into one mound, kneading them gently together.
6 / Divide the dough in half, and place each half on a large piece of plastic wrap. Let the dough chill in the fridge for one hour, but preferably at least two, before rolling it out.
FOR THE FILLING /
4 pears, whichever you like to use for baking, Bosc works well
Squeeze of lemon juice
1 cup brown sugar
2 tsp. cinnamon
1 tsp. nutmeg
1 tsp. ginger
1 / Preheat the oven to 350˚F.
2 / Cut the pears up into all different shapes and sizes, but note, they do have to fit into the cookies so don’t make them too big!
3 / Squeeze a lemon over the cut pears and toss the pears in a bowl with the brown sugar, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.
4 / On a baking sheet, spread the pears out in an even layer. Bake the pears for 30 minutes total, tossing and redistributing at about the 15 minute mark.
FOR FINISHING /
1 large egg
1 / Roll out the chilled dough and using either a large circle cutter or glass start cutting circles. Mine was a 3.5 inch circle, but you can use whatever size you’d like the cookies to be. *If you dough is getting warm from being out of the fridge, get it back in! Make sure the dough never heats too much, its is difficult to deal with and won’t bake as nicely.
2 / Lightly dampen the top of the circle cut out with water, this will help seal it with the top piece of dough.
3 / Place some of your pears on top of the damp side of the dough, about ¼ inch from the end (so you have room to seal it closed).
4 / Place a second circle on top of the pears. Using a fork lightly dusted in flour, press around the entire circle to seal it closed.
5 / With a sharp knife, cut your decorative slits in the pie.
6 / Using a brush (or you hands- hey, I didn’t have a brush yet) apply a light egg wash. Sprinkle sugar on top. * Optional: with any extra dough, cut small decorative shapes and apply to the top of the dough after the egg wash is applied. Also egg wash the extra shape.
7/ Bake the “cookies” for 20-25 minutes or until they are golden brown, light and pie like. Transfer to a cooling rack and cool a bit before eating. They also are great warm with ice cream!
So what do you think? PIE COOKIES?! I think they're pretty FAB and they were a hit, so look like I'll be making them again!