cherry hand pies

 as a kid in the 80s, it was totally a thrill to go to mcdonalds.  although, i will let it be known, {according to my mom} that when i went to mcdonalds, i frequently ordered a salad…guess i never really was a big meat eater.

but the highlight of those trips to mcdonalds were definitely the hot apple pies.  fried & flaky & filled with gloppy apple pieces, i loved them & they were a thousand times better than the cardboard-like baked ones that replaced them in 90s.

i threw these together quickly after work on friday, since we were having friends over for dinner.  sitting uncooked on the baking sheet, i declared them the ugliest things i had ever made, but they baked up perfectly & biting through the buttery, crisp crust made me think back to those pies of my childhood…

…although, filled with fresh, organic fruit, baked, not fried, nor served through the window of a drive thru.


makes 9 individual pies

1 1/2 tablespoons corn starch
2 cups fresh cherries, stemmed & pitted
2/3 cup dried cherries
1/2 cup sugar
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
pinch kosher salt
1 14oz package puff pastry, thawed in the fridge
flour, for dusting
1 egg white
1 1/2 teaspoon turbinado, or other raw sugar

in a small bowl, whisk together cornstarch & 1 1/2 tablespoons cold water.

in a large saucepan, combine both kinds of cherries, sugar, vanilla & salt. cook over medium heat, stirring occasionally, for about 5 minutes, or until the fresh cherries’ juices are released. add the cornstarch mixture, increase the heat & bring to a boil. continue to stir often. once bubbling, remove from heat & let cool to somewhere around room temperature.

lightly flour a working surface. roll puff pastry dough into a 18 x 15 rectangle. cut into 9 equal rectangles, using a sharp knife.

preheat oven to 375° & line a baking sheet with parchment paper.

in another small bowl, whisk egg white with 1 tablespoon cold water. take one rectangle of pastry dough & brush edges with egg wash. spoon about 3 tablespoons of the cherry mixture onto one side & fold the other side of dough over top. crimp edges with a fork & set on prepared baking sheet.  repeat with remaining dough & filling.  swear a little about how awful they look.

brush the tops of each pie with egg wash & sprinkle turbinado over the tops.  bake for 30-40 minutes, until golden brown.  let cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.  nobody likes their taste buds burned off.

adapted very slightly (as in, i didn’t read one of the steps & everything turned out just fine) from bon appetit magazine 

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