Chrysta 10 min. 15 min.

Last Saturday, I taught a class on pie making.  In my excitement for the class, it seems I over-purchased fruit for the pies, by about 10lbs.  I also over-purchased in other areas, which is why I have 3 dozen eggs in my house as well.

I’m not that concerned about the 3lbs of apples and 3lbs of peaches I had left over.  Fresh fruit can be stored just fine.

But, what I was concerned about was the 4lbs of cut fruit tossed in sugar and spice and everything nice cornstarch or flour that we didn’t use for pies.

I mentioned on our Facebook page that one of the first things I made were hand pies.


Making Hand Pies


Most people are familiar with hand-pies when they get them from McDonalds or Hostess.Hand pies are essentially hand-held pies.

You can make hand-pies at home without all of the added ingredients of what you will get when you buy the hand-pies.

I made two kinds of hand pies for two reasons:  (1) I had a disc of flaky pie crust that I had to use, and (2) I really like the flaky (almost laminated dough-like) texture of an all butter and egg hand-pie crust that I discovered through King Arthur Flour a few years ago.


Recipes for You!

Instead of making birthday cakes this weekend, I used the extra filling to make hand-pies.   Elina made a request on our Facebook page for a recipe so that she can use her leftover cherries.  So, I’m going to give the recipe for two crust options and two filling options.


Two Types of Pie Crusts:

1.  Flaky Pie Crust (recipe uses butter and shortening).  This crust is less sweet, more savory.

2.  Egg and Milk Crust, used for “Home-made Pop-tarts”.  (adapted from King Arthur Flour)

And for filling, here are two things I like:


Strawberry Filling:


  • 8 ounces Strawberries
  • ½ C (4oz) sugar
  • 1 ½  tsp cornstarch dissolved in 1 tsp of water.
  • 2 tbsp lemon juice


  1. Cut up strawberries into small pieces.

  2. Place strawberries in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Add lemon juice and sugar.

  3. Once mixture comes to a boil, add cornstarch/water mixture. Bring to boil, then reduce to medium heat.

  4. Cook for 5-10 minutes , or until mixture has reduced to a jam-like consistency.

  5. Cool filling completely before putting on dough.  (Hot filling will melt butter in dough). (You can cool filling in fridge in about 15 minutes)

  6. When filling the tarts, you’ll use about 1 ½ tablespoons of filling.



Cherry Pie Filling:


  • 1 C fresh sweet cherries that have been pitten and cut into quarters
  • 1/3 C of sugar
  • a pinch of cinnamon
  • a pinch of salt
  • 1 tbsp. cornstarch + 2 tsp cold water
  • ½ tsp. vanilla extract  



  1. Pit and slice cherries.
  2. Toss cherries with sugar, salt, and cinnamon.
  3. Place cherries in a saucepot over a medium-high heat and cook for 4 minutes, or until juice starts to leak from the fruit and mixture starts to steam or boil.
  4. Mix cornstarch with 2 tsp of cold water until the cornstarch is fully dissolved.
  5. Add cornstarch mixture into the cherries; stir until incorporated.
  6. Cook mixture over medium heat for 5 minutes, until mixture is thickened. Remove from heat, add vanilla extract.
  7. Cool before using as filling in dough.  Mixture will thicken more as it cools.