strawberry hand pies

May 4, 2012

in Pies & Tarts

Some desserts are elegant and refined, while others are rustic and clearly handmade. These strawberry hand pies fall into the latter category, yet I wouldn’t want them any other way. Hand pies are much more fun than a pie, too – I envision tucking a few into a checked linen napkin to take along on a picnic, or offering them at a barbecue.

While the filling possibilities are endless, I made a quick strawberry compote flavored with fresh lemon zest and vanilla. The jammy filling works nicely with the buttery and flaky pastry, and an egg wash adds a golden glaze. Serve alongside strawberry sherbet for a double delight.

Strawberry Hand Pies
Crust adapted from Cooking Light
2 1/2 cups flour
1 tsp salt
2 Tbsp sugar
1/2 cup frozen unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
6 Tbsp vodka, chilled
6 Tbsp cold water

3 cups sliced strawberries
1/4 cup sugar
2 Tbsp water
1 Tbsp lemon zest
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 large egg yolk, lightly beaten
2 Tbsp water

For the crust, combine flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor; pulse 10 times. Add frozen butter and process until mixture resembles coarse meal. Place food processor bowl (with flour mixture) into the freezer to chill for 15 minutes.

Place bowl back on the processor; combine vodka and water and add slowly through the food chute, pulsing just until combined (when large lumps form). Gently pat lumps of dough into a ball; wrap in plastic wrap and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour. At this point, dough can be frozen up to a month.

Divide refrigerated dough in half. Roll out one half on a lightly floured board to 1/8-inch thickness. Use a 5-inch round cutter to cut out 6 circles of dough (I used a 5-inch round plate and cut around the circumference). Place the circles on a parchment-lined baking sheet and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour. Repeat the rolling, cutting, and chilling process with remaining dough.

For the filling, combine strawberries, sugar, water, and lemon zest in a medium saucepan over medium-high heat. Bring to a boil, stirring constantly, then reduce heat to low and simmer mixture for 20 minutes or until thickened. Remove from heat and stir in vanilla; let cool to room temperature. Strain off excess liquid.

Preheat oven to 425°F. Remove chilled dough from the refrigerator and let stand 2 to 3 minutes, until pliable. Spoon a tablespoon of filling into each circle of dough. Fold circle over and seal, using the back of a fork to press the edges of the dough together. Whisk together egg yolk and water in a small bowl; brush pies evenly with mixture. Cut one slit across each pie; place pies back onto parchment-lined baking sheet. Bake 14 to 16 minutes or until lightly browned. Cool slightly on a wire rack before serving.

Yield – 12 hand pies (serving size: 1 pie)
Calories – 210
Carbs – 28

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1 Valerie May 4, 2012

Lovely! Especially the oozy bits of strawberry filling poking through the buttery crust. :D


2 fabiola May 4, 2012

Oooo I just love this! They are so sweet and innocent looking. The photos are awesome, and make me want to eat this right away. I love anything with strawberry cooked, and I cant wait to try this. I feel like today is a good day for that, and I just happen to have frozen strawberries! Thanks for sharing:)


3 Jen L | Tartine ans Apron Strings May 4, 2012

Rustic is always good…it screams “handmade with love!” I have some left over puff pastry in my fridge…I’m making the jammy filling and giving this a go tomorrow.


4 Roxana GreenGirl { A little bit of everything} May 4, 2012

Homemade is always better. Love the individual pies and the oozing strawberry compote through the pie cut, oh my!


5 Jean (Lemons and Anchovies) May 5, 2012

This my kind of sweet treat (well, practically everything you make falls in that category). So rustically perfect–love them!


6 Lisa { AuthenticSuburbanGourmet } May 5, 2012

What a perfect little treat! Love that we are both on the strawberry trend – they just taste so wonderful right now. Love the styling of your pies and just wish I had one right now to eat. Have a great weekend!!!


7 Suzanne May 5, 2012

Love them, anyway I can get them! I was just thinking of making some peach hand pies to night for dessert. Hope your weekend is fabulous.


8 Rowena @ Apron and Sneakers May 5, 2012

I’ll add this to my list of picnic goodies. Thanks Laura!


9 Lizzy (Good Things) May 5, 2012

Laura, I love rustic and adore strawberries. Such a beautiful post! Thanks so much for sharing.


10 Elizabeth May 5, 2012

Those look delicious!! Is there a substitute for the vodka? I don’t have an liquor around so to buy a bottle for 6 Tbs would be wasteful.

Thank you!!


11 Tutti Dolci May 5, 2012

Hi Elizabeth, you can substitute chilled water for the vodka. However, be careful not to overwork the dough since too much water creates gluten and can lead to a tough crust. Vodka gives the crust moisture and then vaporizes during baking, leaving no alcohol flavor behind and helps make the crust flaky.


12 Choc Chip Uru May 5, 2012

I have always found hand pies to be so cute and simple – actually preferred to a real pie ;)
These look stunning – can’t go wrong with berries!

Choc Chip Uru


13 Susan May 5, 2012

I love these! I’m always looking for desserts to make with fresh strawberries!


14 Jennifer (Delicieux) May 6, 2012

Your hand pies are just so adorable!!! And thanks for the tip about vodka making the pies more flaky. I will have to try this!


15 Jesica @ Pencil Kitchen May 6, 2012

plus, with a hand pie, you get two times the crust!!! :D


16 Gourmantine May 6, 2012

I love rustic dishes, there is always something sweet and cozy about them , that makes you wanna curl up on the sofa and dig in :)


17 Charles May 6, 2012

These remind me of Cornish Pasties – a delicious meat pie from England – except of course that these are bursting with strawberry jam and look delicious. So pretty and love the name too!


18 Sandra's Easy Cooking May 6, 2012

Those look wonderful Laura! Love the filling and they look very tempting!


19 Deborah May 6, 2012

These are so pretty – and would be perfect for a picnic!!


20 Nami | Just One Cookbook May 6, 2012

I might take a short cut and use puffed pastry, but the filling looks so yum and perfect! I love the half moon shape. Must try!


21 Cassie May 8, 2012

I love all of these strawberry posts you have going on. I can eat my weight in strawberries!


22 LP @dishclips May 8, 2012

This reminds me of those pies I buy on the go at the convenience store, but this probably taste better.


23 Liren May 12, 2012

I love hand pies! These look fantastic!


24 Courtney May 20, 2012

Hi Laura, does it matter what type of vodka you use for the crust? Just wondering!


25 Tutti Dolci May 20, 2012

Hi Courtney, any brand should be fine. The vodka evaporates during baking and doesn’t affect the flavor of the crust. Happy baking!


26 Andrea June 17, 2012

I made these for Father’s Day and can’t wait to give them to my dad! He’s nuts about pie so I think these will go over well :) And of course I tested them out to be sure they were good :)



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