let me lend a helping hand pie

No, you can keep it. We chug on with the cherry talk. The plan was for today’s  post to be about making some empanadas. Summer is almost here. Today, we would talk about empanadas with a fruit filling of…well, you know.

Something magical happens when you are in synch with someone else. It happened this morning when my email from smittenkitchen.com http://smittenkitchen.com/ landed in my inbox.

It’s one of my favorite sites. And what had the wonderful Deb Perelman posted about? Hand pies. The same sort of  idea as an empanada. Whatever you want to call them, the process basically gives you the same summer fruit pie experience in your hands.

Go ahead and use some pre-made dough available in your market. Dust your cutting board with some flour. Here’s a tip for you. Did you know the way to create the smoothest floured surface is to toss the flour almost sideways across the board? This ensures a surface free of clumps of flour.

Prepare the cherries as we have done all week. Rinse with water and grab the cherry pitter. For this recipe, we are going to put the cherries in a food processor. Pulse several times. Add a little sugar. You want the cherries to be smaller in size for this recipe. A lumpy filling is not what you want for the pastry puff filling. For these hand pies, we are using 5 ingredients: flour, pastry dough, cherries, granulated sugar, and egg whites for an egg wash.

Roll out dough from the package.  Sprinkle a little flour and smooth on the surface. Cut the round dough right down the middle. Use a slotted spoon to put the cherries on the pastry dough. Place the filling on one side. Stay away from the edges. Take bottom half of dough and place over the cherries. Press the edges to seal. If some cherry juices run out — just wipe up. Use a fork to press down on the edges. It looks pretty and it seals the edges one more time. 

Brush with the whites of  1 egg. Give the pies a sprinkle of sugar. Place in the oven at 350 degrees for about 45 minutes.

These cherries are not pre-cooked. The sweet cherry taste will intensify, as the juices are heated, and surrounded by a buttery crust. My guys like the crust-to-fruit ratio in these hand pies. More crust!

Taste summer in your hands. Let the cherry juice drip down your arm. It’s summer. Let it go.

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