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Gingered Apricot Hand Pies

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Level: Intermediate

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Description

Gingered hand pies deliver the sweet-tang of apricots with a little ginger kick, all wrapped up in a cute flaky package. They make a great breakfast pastry; or teatime pastry; or afternoon snack pastry; or an I-just-got-a-huge-bill-from-the-orthodontist pastry. Or my personal favorite, my-kids-are-driving-me-nuts-and-I’m-hiding-in-the-bathroom pastry.

Ingredients

  • FOR THE PASTRY:
  • 2 whole Uncooked 9-inch Pie Crusts; Store Bought, Your Favorite Recipe Or See My Recipe For No Excuses Pie Dough
  • FOR THE FILLING:
  • 5-½ pounds Fresh Ripe Apricots
  • ½ cups Granulated Sugar
  • 1-½ Tablespoon Cornstarch
  • ¼ teaspoons Peeled And Grated Fresh Ginger
  • 1-½ teaspoon Fresh Lemon Juice
  • 1 Tablespoon Water
  • ¼ teaspoons Imitation Rum Extract
  • 1 pinch Salt
  • FOR THE TOPPING:
  • 1 whole Egg
  • 1 Tablespoon Cool Water
  • 1 Tablespoon Raw Or Coarse Sugar, To Taste

Preparation

For the pastry:
1. Prepare my No Excuses Pie Dough (see my TastyKitchen recipe box) according to directions and chill the dough wrapped in plastic wrap in the refrigerator. Or use your favorite recipe, just make sure it’s enough for a double crust 9-inch pie.

For the filling:
1. Slice the apricots in half to remove the pits, and then quarter each apricot half, for a total of 8 pieces per apricot. Place the apricot pieces into a medium saucepan.
2. In a small bowl, combine the sugar, cornstarch, and ground ginger. Pour the sugar mixture over the apricot pieces and stir to coat.
3. Juice the lemon and mix it with a tablespoon of water before pouring it over the apricot mixture in the pan; stir.
4. Cook over medium-low heat, stirring constantly, until the juices release, and the mixture becomes very thick and bubbly. (This will take about 3 to 4 minutes.)
5. Stir in rum extract and salt; continuing to cook for 1 more minute.
6. Remove the pot of filling from the heat and allow it to cool to room temperature, about 30 minutes.

For the topping:
1. Whisk a large egg white with a tablespoon of water until frothy; set aside.
2. Place the raw sugar into a small ramekin; set aside.

To form the hand pies:
1. Once the filling has cooled, line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper.
2. Roll out your pastry on a clean, floured surface. Cut an even number of squares or disks with a 3” x 3” cutter. Each pie will require two pieces of pastry, so be sure to cut an even number.
3. Place half of the pastry pieces 2-inches apart on the prepared baking sheets.
4. Spoon 1 ½ to 2 tablespoons of apricot filling onto the center of each pastry square.
5. Cover the filling on each square with another pastry square. Gently press the edges of the dough to seal before crimping with a fork.
6. Prick only the top layer of pastry with a fork or paring knife to allow steam to vent.
7. Brush the top of each hand pie with the egg wash, and sprinkle a pinch of raw sugar on top.
8. Chill the pies in the refrigerator for 15 minutes.

To bake the pies:
1. Preheat the oven to 375 F.
2. After 15 minutes remove the pies from the refrigerator and bake them in the preheated oven for 20-25 minutes, or until the tops and bottoms are golden brown.
3. Then remove the sheets from the oven and let the pies cool for 10 minutes on the baking sheets. Then transfer to a wire rack to cool completely.

Notes: Hand pies can be made one day ahead of time. Once cooled, wrap the pies loosely in aluminum foil, and let stand at room temperature. To ensure the pies stay nice and flaky, do not refrigerate finished pies, or put them in a cooler. Doing so will cause them to get soft and mushy.

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