Apricot Blackberry Hand Pies

This recipe is adapted from Kim Boyce, owner of the Portland, Ore., bakery Bakeshop. Making this rough puff pastry is quite involved, with several turns and cold rests. It must be started at least a day in advance and the filled pastries must also be frozen prior to baking. To make things easier, you can pause at any stage and allow the dough to rest for several hours, or even overnight, to work the dough around your schedule. And the finished product is well worth the fuss.
Photo by Lesley W.
Adapted from npr.org

PREP TIME

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minutes

TOTAL TIME

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minutes

SERVINGS

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servings

PREP TIME

--

minutes

TOTAL TIME

--

minutes

SERVINGS

--

servings

Adapted from npr.org

Ingredients

  • Pie Dough

  • 5

    About 5 cups (600 grams) all-purpose flour

  • 6

    tablespoons (60 grams) sugar

  • 1

    tablespoon (10 grams) kosher salt

  • 500

    grams (about 1 pound) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2-inch pieces

  • 3/4 to 1 1/4

    cups ice-cold water

  • Filling

  • 2

    pounds ripe apricots

  • 3/4

    cup apricot jam

  • 2 to 4

    tablespoons sugar, depending on the sweetness of the fruit

  • 1 1/2

    cups blackberries

  • Finish

  • 1

    egg, whisked well

  • 1/2

    cup sugar stirred with 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

Directions

To make the dough, place dry ingredients in a stand mixer or food processor. Add butter and mix or pulse until broken down to sizes varying from peas to almonds to walnuts. Pour mixture into a large bowl and add the smaller amount of water recommended. Toss together and squeeze the dough to determine if more water is needed. The dough should just hold together, with shaggy dry areas as well as areas that are moister. If the dough is too dry, add the remaining water and toss. Transfer dough to a shallow container or wrap into a rough square in plastic wrap. Chill overnight. After the dough has chilled, unwrap it onto a floured surface. Pat the dough into a square, then use a rolling pin to roll it into a rectangle about 8 1/2 x 14 inches. The dough will crumble and be rough around the edges, but don't add more flour or water — it will come together during rolling. For the first "turn," fold the dough into thirds, like a letter. The seam should be on the left side. Chill 30 minutes. For the second turn, take the dough out, this time with the seam at the bottom. Again roll the dough into an 8 1/2 x 14 inch rectangle and repeat the previous step. Chill 30 minutes. For the third turn, repeat the previous step, then wrap the dough in plastic and chill for at least 2 hours and preferably overnight. After the dough has chilled for the final time, roll it to a thickness of approximately 1/8 inch. Cut into 7-inch circles (if you don't have a cutter, you can draw a knife around the edge of a plate). Take any scraps and knead them together, then chill, covered, for an hour before re-rolling. Repeat until all of the dough is cut into circles. Keep dough circles cold while you prepare the filling. To make the filling and finish the pies, cut the apricots in half and discard the pits, then slice them into slim wedges (maybe sixths or eighths, depending upon the size of the fruit). Place in a large bowl and add jam and sugar. Stir lightly to coat, then gently stir in the berries (being mindful not to mush them). The fruit should be glistening with a light coating of jam. Take your prepared pastry circles and brush with the beaten egg. Fill the circles with the filling (just a handful of apricot pieces and a few berries), then fold into a half-moon shape and press a half-inch from the edge to seal (Boyce suggests not crimping the very edges themselves, to avoid compressing the layers). Place on a pan in a single layer, brush with the egg and sprinkle generously with the cinnamon sugar. Freeze for a minimum of one hour. While the tarts are freezing, preheat the oven to 375°F. When the hand pies are frozen, line a few baking sheets with parchment and place the hand pies on the sheet (with ample space between them). Bake for 45 minutes to an hour, rotating the pans halfway through. The tarts are ready when the crusts are dark golden-brown and blistering, the fruit is bubbling and perhaps some juice has run from the hand pies and caramelized on the parchment paper. (Boyce stresses that color equals flavor. And with such a high crust-to-filling ratio, she says, you don't want it doughy — so try to let the pies get a bit darker than you might be inclined). Remove pies from the oven, and immediately transfer the hand pies to a cooling rack, before the caramelized juices cement them down. Serve the hand pies warm from the oven or later that same day. The unbaked hand pies will keep, well wrapped and frozen, for up to one month.

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