Friday, October 16, 2015

Little Honey Almond Apple Hand Pies

These nice little hand pies are adapted from a recipe for mini pop tarts on the National Honey Board's website, which has as great variety of honey-related recipes. I did some fiddling with the recipe by adding a few thin slices of apple to the almond/honey filling and making them round instead of square.  Check out the original recipe for some great variations that include one for dark chocolate and another for spicy habanero (no lie!). 

Little Honey Almond Apple Hand Pies
For the pastry:
1/2 cup whole wheat flour
1/2 cup all-purpose white flour
1/2 teaspoon salt
3 tablespoons butter, chilled and cut into 1/4 inch cubes
1 tablespoon olive oil
3 (about) tablespoons ice water

1/2 apple, peeled and very thinly sliced.  Toss with 1 teaspoon lemon juice
1/4 cup almonds
1/4 cup honey  
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
pinch of salt

For top of pastry:
pinch of sugar, optional

Whisk the flours and salt together. Cut in the chilled butter until it's the size of peas. (I did this in a food processor with a few quick pulses and then transferred it to a bowl.)  Sprinkle the olive oil over and toss to coat the flour as best you can.  A tablespoon at a time, sprinkle the water over the mixture, tossing with a fork and then, if you need a third tablespoon, your hands.  You want a firm by pliable dough that isn't too over worked (but don't be afraid to tell it who's boss!).  Form the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and chill for 30 minutes.  

While dough chills, set the oven to 400 degrees. Place the almonds on an ungreased cookie sheet and put them in the oven.  Remove them from the oven when it reaches 400.  Chop the almonds in a food processor--the more finely you chop them, the more gooey the filling will be. Combine the almonds honey, cinnamon and salt in a small bowl.  

When dough has chilled for 30 minutes, roll out on a lightly floured surface to about 1/8th inch thickness (as thin as you can!).  The olive oil in the dough should make it fairly pliable.  Cut dough into 2 1/2 inch rounds. (I used a  beer glass.) You should get about 8 rounds from the first roll.  Place half of the rounds on the cookie sheet, top with about a tablespoon of almond/honey filling and two or three thin apple slices.  Place a dough round on top of the filling, pressing to cover the filling.  Use a fork to seal the top dough round with the bottom. Then use the fork to gently poke a few holes in the top of the pastry. Repeat with remaining pastry rounds.  Roll dough out again.  You should get at least two rounds and maybe four from this one.  If you like, you can brush the hand pies with water (or milk or half and half) and sprinkle with a little sugar.  

Bake for 15-20 minutes until the pastry has browned at the edges and is firm to the touch.  Cool on cookie sheets.  Makes about 10 hand pies.  

Robert and I each had two for dessert--and I'm just now noticing that another one has gone missing--a clear Robert endorsement!  They're not very big--but if we want to be honest with ourselves (and we do--well, at least most of the time), then one hand pie is probably what the daily portion-per-human should be. 

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