Cherry Hand Pies

Cherry Hand Pies are so much easier than you think!  via Brittany's PantryYes.  These are good.

I am telling you this in response to the comment you undoubtedly made when you saw this picture.  Did you not just say to yourself (perhaps silently) “Wow!  Those look good!”?  I thought so.  So I am answering you, as I often do while writing, just as if you were sitting in my kitchen, across from me at lunch, or curled up on a couch while our children play nearby, having a conversation about food.  In fact, they are very good.  You should make them.

You should also know that these don’t taste anything like the fat and sugar laden kind from the gas station.  If you actually like those pies, don’t worry.  These are better.  If you never liked those pies, don’t worry.  These are better.
Why?  They are made with store-bought puff pastry; I don’t know anyone who has the time or desire to make it from scratch.  Using puff pastry, as opposed to a pie crust type of dough, means that the layered crust is buttery, flaky, crispy, and so delicately wonderful you will close you eyes and sigh.  It also makes this dessert/snack/breakfast come together quick and easy.  I would tell you that these would be fantastic to pack for a picnic, but I wouldn’t know if that is true.  Ours never make it that far.Cherry Hand Pies are so much easier than you think!  via Brittany's PantryCherry Hand Pies are so much easier than you think!  via Brittany's PantryCherry Hand Pies are so much easier than you think!  via Brittany's Pantry One Year Ago: Earth Bread

Cherry Hand Pies
Recipe adapted from Bon Appetit
When I first made these, I didn’t have time to bake them.  I made the filling and put it in the fridge for a day or two until I had time to assemble and bake.

In a large saucepan, combine:
2 c fresh cherries, pitted or 12 oz of frozen cherries, unthawed
2/3 c dried cherries
1/2 c sugar
pinch of salt

Cook over medium heat until the cherries pop and release their juice.  In a small bowl, mix 1 1/2 T of cornstarch with 2 T of water.  Add to the fruit and continue cooking a minute more until thick.  Remove from heat and add 1 tsp of vanilla.  Cool to room temp or chill and hold for a day or two.

To Make The Pies:
1-14 oz pkg frozen puff pastry, thawed in the fridge overnight
flour, for dusting the counter
1 egg white
sugar, raw or granulated

On a clean counter, roll out 1 sheet (half the package) of pastry dough, just until it is a bit thinner and an inch or two bigger all the way around.  With a small sharp knife or pizza cutter, cut into 4 equal squares.  Spoon about 1/3 of a cup of filling in the center of each square-note that this should use up half your fruit.  Bring one side over to make a rectangle and press the edges with a fork to seal.  Repeat with remaining dough and filling making 8 pies total.  Beat the egg white with a splash of water and brush over pies.  Sprinkle with sugar.  Make 2 or 3 tiny slashes in the top of each pie for steam to vent.  Place pies on parchment lined baking sheet and chill for 30 minutes.  Preheat the oven to 375 and bake for 30-35 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown.  Cool on rack for 10 minutes, if you can wait that long.  Caution!  Filling is hot!  Store at room temp tightly sealed for up to 2 days.  They start to lose their crispness after the first 24 hours.