Sunday, March 14, 2010

Cherry Crumb Pielets for Pi Day!

Right? Pielets? Like tarts are tarlets, mini pies are pielets. Who cares, they're good! March 14th is National Pi Day! So this is my part to celebrate.
I have this Pillsbury 2010 calendar and each month is a feature recipe with a pretty picture to go along with. Well February's feature kept calling my name, so I finally went ahead and made my version of it combining another recipe. They called for ready made biscuits, but I used Dorie's pie crust I had stashed in my freezer (♥ her recipe, see below). I already had the cherry pie filling and the crumb topping was a cinch to put together. This recipe was easy as...PIE!

Cherry Crumb Pielets
3/4 cup all-purpose or unbleached flour
1/2 cup packed brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/2 cup Butter
1/2 cup Chopped Nuts, if desired (I used sliced almonds)
1 can (21 oz) cherry pie filling
1 recipe for pie crust (below)

Heat oven to 425°F.
In medium bowl, mix flour, brown sugar and cinnamon. With pastry blender or fork, cut in butter until mixture looks like coarse crumbs. Stir in nuts.
Roll pie crust dough on lightly floured work surface. With 3 1/2- or 4-inch round cutter, cut 12 rounds from each crust. (*save scraps for little cinnamon sugar treats, just bake the scraps till golden, when done roll in cinnamon sugar!)
Fit rounds into ungreased regular size muffin tins, pressing in gently. Spoon about 2 tablespoons pie filling into each crust-lined cup.
Add a little topping to each pie (about 2 Tbl)
Bake 14 to 18 minutes or until edges are golden brown and filling is bubbly.

Good For Almost Everything Pie Dough
-reprinted with permission from Dorie Greenspan, Baking From My Home to Yours
makes one 9-inch crust

1 1/2 cups all·purpose flour
2 tablespoons sugar
3/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/4 sticks (10 tablespoons) very cold (frozen is fine) unsalted butter, cut into tablespoon-size pieces
2 1/2 tablespoons very cold (frozen is even better) vegetable shortening, cut into 2 pieces
About 1/4 cup ice water

Put the flour, sugar and salt in a food processor fitted with a metal blade; pulse just to combine the ingredients. Drop in the butter and shortening and pulse only until the butter and shortening are cut into the flour. Don't overdo the mixing—what you're aiming for is to have some pieces the size of fat green peas and others the size of barley. Pulsing the machine on and off, gradually add about 3 tablespoons of water—all a little water and pulse once, add some more water, pulse again and keep going that way. Then use a few long pulses to get the water into the flour. If after a dozen or so pulses, the dough doesn't look evenly moistened or form soft curds, pulse in as much of the remaining water as necessary, or even a few drops more, to get a dough that will stick together when pinched. Big pieces of butter are fine. Scrape the dough out of the work bowl and onto a work surface.

Gather the dough into a ball, flatten the ball into a disk and wrap in plastic. Refrigerate the dough for at least 1 hour before rolling. (If your ingredients were very cold and you worked quickly, though, you might be able to roll the dough immediately: the dough should be as cold as if it had just come out of the fridge.)

*My note for mini pies: After this step, roll out on a lightly floured surface and use a 4" cutter (*use a drinking glass!) and cut out 12 rounds to fill your muffin tins. You may have to re roll leftover dough scraps to get more rounds.

To Roll Out the Dough: Have a buttered 9-inch pie plate at hand. You can roll the dough out on a floured surface or between sheets of wax paper or plastic wrap or in a rolling slipcover. (I usually roll this dough out on the floured counter.) If you're working on a counter, turn the dough over frequently and keep the counter floured. If you are rolling between paper, plastic or in a slipcover, make sure to turn the dough over often and to lift the paper, plastic or cover frequently so that it doesn't roll into the dough and form creases. If you've got time, slide the rolled-out dough into the fridge for about 20 minutes to firm up.

To Make the Crust: Fit the dough into the pie plate and, using a pair of scissors, but the excess dough to a 1/4- to 1/2 inch overhang. Fold the dough under itself, so that it hangs over the edge just a tad, and flute or pinch the crust to make a decorative edge. Alternatively, you can finish the crust by pressing it with the tines of a fork.

*To my surprise, these were also featured at The Kitchn! Thanks guys!


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6 Lovely Comments:

Nancy said...

This brought make memories "*save scraps for little cinnamon sugar treats, just bake the scraps till golden, when done roll in cinnamon sugar!". We used to hang out and bug my mother when she did baking because we always knew we would get the leftover scraps as treats:)

Nancy/n.o.e said...

Cherry Pie is such a classic - it's perfect for Pi Day! I love the photo of the pielets in their little muffin tin. Scrumptious!

AmyRuth said...

Mmm little pie bites.... they are the perfect diet food. Just one bite and your good. They looks delicious.

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