Apple Pocket Pies


I have a confession. I’m reading Twilight. It’s ironic in a lot of ways. When I was teaching, my students were always dying to get me to read it. Nah, too busy kids. Translation: SO below me. But I’ve been sneaking around, reading it deliberately face down in public places and keeping it on the DL when talking to friends. I know it’s silly. I shouldn’t be ashamed. But for someone who has an advanced degree in English literature and is generally a little snobby about their reading material… it’s a new thing for me. And you know what? It’s amazing.

I can’t remember the last time I read something for no other purpose than to escape. Obviously I read for information or for a nice story/plot, but more often than not, I read to admire the craft of an author. So as I’m still struggling to find a full-time job and getting a little more antsy with each passing day, I’ve also decided to try and be gentle with myself. It’s cool. Watch Mad Men in the middle of the day. Why not? Someday (hopefully soon) I’ll look back on this day and marvel that I had the time to do such a thing. And in that vein, I’ve decided to loosen up the reading reigns and have at a little trash. Why not? Got something better to do? So I’m unstoppable now. As any Twilight reader will tell you, these books are rather addicting. No they’re not written well…at all. But there’s something appealing about Stephanie Meyer’s quick prose and the way she taps into your long-lost high school psyche.

Yesterday I wanted to whip up a little snack to go with my daily dose of vamp-lit. And I knew exactly what it would be: I bought this sweet little apple pie mold at Williams Sonoma and had been waiting for just the right time to make these individual pockets. It turns out they’re the perfect companion to shameful afternoon reading.

There’s also something charmingly nostalgic about them. Remember those awful filled pies that kids (with the exception of me) got in their lunch boxes? They were filled with lemon or chocolate and were covered in a pie crust–I was always in awe of the kids that got those pies. They seemed mysterious and I figured, for sure, those kids had cooler moms than mine. Now, I’m whipping up my own version without the nuclear-colored fruit and trans-fat filled crust. So whether they bring you back to childhood, convince you to enjoy some shameful reading, or just help you usher in fall–enjoy. And let me know if you have any bad (but oh so good) reading recommendations. I’m on a roll.

Now generally I don’t like to post recipes where you need special equipment. But this is an exception. If you don’t have a hankering to spend $9.99 on your own individual pie mold, no worries. This recipe would still be great for individual apple pies or tarts. The recipe for the crust actually comes from the back of the William Sonoma box, and the recipe for the filling comes from yours truly. Now I usually only use Martha Stewart’s recipe for pate brisee, but I strayed this time and I’m so glad I did. The trick is to get a super crumbly consistency by adding just the right amount of ice water (see center photo below of dough texture).

Apple Pocket Pies

Apple Pocket Pies

  • Yield: 8 small pies
  • Prep time: 3 hrs
  • Cook time: 20 mins
  • Total time: 3 hrs 20 mins

Ingredients

For Apple Filling

3 large apples, peeled and diced
3 tsp. lemon juice
1/8 cup sugar
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
1/4 tsp. nutmeg
2 Tbsp. flour
dash of salt

For Crust:

2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp. salt
2 Tbsp. sugar, plus more for sprinkling
16 Tbsp. (2 sticks/250g) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch (12mm) dice
6 to 8 Tbsp. ice water
1/2 to 1 cup pie filling
1 egg, lightly beaten with 1 Tbsp. water (for egg wash)

Instructions

In a food processor, pulse together the flour, salt, and the 2 Tbsp. sugar until combined, about 5 pulses. Add the butter and pulse until the mixture resembles coarse meal, about 10 pulses. Add 6 Tbsp. ice water and pulse twice. The dough should hold together when squeezed with your fingers but should not be sticky. If it is crumbly, add more water, 1 tsp. at a time, pulsing twice after each addition (I added 9-10 Tbsp when all was said and done). Divide the dough in half, wrap with plastic, and press each into a disk. Refrigerate for at least 2 hours or up to overnight. Then when ready to begin assembling, let the dough stand at room temperature for 5 minutes.

On a floured surface, roll out 1 dough disk into a round 1/16 to 1/8 inch (2 to 3mm) thick. Brush off the excess flour. Using the Pocket Pie Mold, cut out 8 of each shape. Reroll dough scraps if necessary and cut out more shapes. Repeat with remaining dough disk.

Place a solid dough shape in the bottom half of the cutter and gently press the dough into the mold. Fill the center with 1 to 2 Tbsp. pie filling and brush edges of the dough with the egg wash. Top with matching shape. Press the top half of the cutter down to seal and crimp the edges of the pie. Remove the pie from the mold and place on a parchment lined baking sheet. Repeat with remaining dough. Freeze the pies 20-30 minutes.

To bake: Preheat oven to 400 F. Brush the pies with the egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. Bake until the crust is golden brown and the filling is gently bubbling, 15-20 minutes. Cool on a wire rack for ten minutes.

Comments

  1. eM

    I love apple pie in ANY form!
    We used to use that same Martha recipe forcrust,then I took
    Kate McDermott's "Art of the Pie" class and learned all about lard. That class is worth a a trip to Seattle.

  2. The Not So Perfect Housewife

    Hi there. Just Food Blog hopping and saw these delicious apple treats!

    What a cute little gadget too. How fun.

    We live in FL and the apples here are not all that great. But I'm thinking about trying out this recipe. With all the other yummy ingredients, it's bound to taste good!

    Have a great weekend

  3. Jeffrey James Kingman

    A couple years ago I would pick my two daughters up from school (Grace was third grade and Ellie in Montessori). When we got to my home, I'd slice apples, saute them in butter, sweetener and spice and fold them into a store-bought pie dough; bake and serve to Grace. She loved the quick snack.

    For professional cooking or dinner parties, I'd use a pate brisee, but when little girlies are hungry after school - sometimes you have to cheat. ;) Great looking recipe you posted! And yes - you should spend this time pleasing yourself.

  4. Sophie

    What a great gadget!! hahahaha,..

    I love these yummie apple pockets!!

    Delicious!!

  5. Barbara Bakes

    I missed out on the Twilight craze too! I'm glad you're taking time out now to enjoy a guilty pleasure!

  6. Kelsey B.

    I lOVED Twilight and was, also, against it at first. Seriously, it wasn't until the movie came out that I became curious about the books. I have read all of them and, though the English is pretty basic, was hooked on the story. And apple pie, too, good post.

  7. El

    What a great snack - far superior to those horrid supermarket treats!

  8. Megan Gordon

    Nice story about your girls, JJK.

    And, oooh lard pie crust...Citizen Cake, a bakery here in SF, does their holiday pie crusts with lard. Very curious!

    About Twilight: Barbara, it's not too late! And Kelsey, so glad to hear other smart women were sucked in, too :)

  9. Mardi @eatlivetravelwrite

    Love that you are being a bit more gentle on yourself and allowing yourself such "luxuries" as midday baking. Means we get to see and drool over the pictures. Good luck with the job hunt (((hugs)))

  10. Megan Gordon

    Thanks, Jen and Amelia.

    And thanks for good luck wishes, Mardi. At this point,I need it!

  11. Becky

    man oh man. have you ever considered adopting a 21-year-old girl from Georgia? until someone packs one of these in my lunch, my life will not be complete!

  12. Megan Gordon

    Becky-That may be the best comment I've ever received. Laughed out loud and almost spit out my coffee. Thanks for stopping by!

  13. Kenzie

    These are perfect for breakfast on the go for my kids! I'm so impressed with this recipe because it's relatively easy, and the pies last for a good while. Thanks for the great idea, it rocks.
    -Kenzie
    Propane Burners

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