I had never heard of a hand pie (aka fried pie) until about five years ago when I saw them for sale at a local Farmer’s Market. I tried one and was not all that impressed. Then, my favorite neighbor, Dorothy, shared memories of making them when she was younger. The taste she described was not at all what I experienced eating. As it turns out, there’s a lot of wiggle room with how these little guys can be made. Dorothy and I decided to give them a try in my kitchen, and we did…with great success! Once we determined that we liked the results, we made a huge batch in order to put some in the freezer. Although they do freeze relatively well, they are much better the day they are fried (while they are still warm). Here is the recipe we enjoyed with the changes we made:
3 apples, cored, peeled, and diced
1/3 c. sugar
½ t. cinnamon
2 c. all-purpose flour
1 t. salt
½ c. very cold butter, grated
½ c. cold water
1 c. oil
Garnish: powdered sugar
Stir together apples, sugar and cinnamon in a saucepan. Cook over low heat for 8-10 minutes, until apples are tender. Set aside.
Combine flour and salt; mix in butter with hands or pasty blender. Stir in water to a dough consistency.
Roll out dough 1/8-inch thick on a floured surface.
Cut out with a four-inch round cookie cutter; place one tablespoon apple mixture in center of each circle. Sprinkle edges with water; fold circles in half. Seal edges with a fork; set aside.
Heat oil in a skillet over medium-high heat. Fry pies, a few at a time, for two to three minutes on each side, until golden. Drain on paper towels.
While still warm, sprinkle with powdered sugar and top with any remaining apple filling. Makes 6-8 pies.