Thursday, June 14, 2012

Apricot, Blueberry and Cardamom Hand Pies

As you can tell, I am a bit obsessed with cardamom these days from my last post - Apricot Cardamom Curd.  Not sure what it is about cardamom, but the aroma just makes me happy, let alone the lovely flavor profile.

I have long wanted to make hand pies.  Are they not the cutest little things? Despite the fact that regular pies are fine, but not my favorite go to dessert.  I think the idea of a two to three bite little pie is simply perfect.  Not messy just easy and portable.

With pies, do you enjoy the crust, the filling or both?  For me, a really great crust is the secret to a perfect pie.  The texture is crispy yet tender.  You can immediately tell there is a lot of butter or shortening or both.  A flakey crust is the true test to achieving greatness.  This crust recipe is one that I have perfected and is a bit unique to the standard pie crust recipes.  Perhaps it is the creme fraiche or the vanilla bean addition? 

With summer around the corner, it just seemed natural to take advantage of the bounty and add apricots and blueberries together along with a hint of cardamom to create a supreme filling for these little delights.  Not too mention a bit of contreau added to the mix just added the extra kick.  Enjoy!!

Apricot, Blueberry and Cardamom Hand Pies

Makes 18 Hand Pies

Pie Crust

2 ½ C. All purpose Flour
1 ½ Sticks cold salted butter (3/4 cup), cut into ½ inch cubes
¼ C. Vegetable shortening, cold
1 Tablespoon sugar
¼ teaspoon vanilla bean
½ teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons crème fraiche
5 to 7 Tablespoons ice water

Mix together the flour, butter, shortening, crème fraiche, salt, sugar and vanilla bean in a bowl with your fingertips or a pastry cutter until the mixture resembles pea size lumps. Add 3 tablespoons of water and mix with a fork or your fingers. To test, squeeze a small handful of the dough until incorporated. Add 1 to 2 more tablespoons of water until incorporated and dough forms a ball. Using the heel of your hand, press the dough flat once or twice to ensure the butter is well distributed. Be careful to not overwork the dough. Divide the dough into two balls and flatten. Wrap with plastic wrap and chill for two hours.


2 Cup apricots, diced small
¾ Cup blueberries
3 Tablespoon sugar
½ teaspoon cardamom (use less if desired)
1 teaspoon Contreau
1 teaspoon lemon zest
Pinch of salt

Add all of the above ingredients to a medium bowl and stir together. Let sit at least one hour to develop the flavors.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

Remove dough from refrigerator to warm up for about 5 to 10 minutes. Use a large surface to roll the dough out. Lightly flour the surface and have plenty of flour available to prevent sticking. Flour the top of the dough to prevent sticking to the rolling pin and add more as required. Roll the first disk of dough out be between 1/8 and ¼ inch thick. Using a 4 inch round cookie cutter, cut as many circles as possible. Gently repeat the process until the dough is utilized. Next you will want to repeat the same process with the second disk of dough.

Make an egg wash by using one egg and a tablespoon of water. Add to a small bowl and whisk until a light yellow color.

Place 6 to 8 circles of dough onto a baking sheet that is either non-stick or lined with parchment paper. Using a pastry brush, lightly apply the egg wash to the entire surface of each circle of dough. Add about 1 tablespoon or a bit less of the fruit mixture to one half of the dough while leaving a half inch of dough exposed. Gently fold over the dough and lightly press with your fingers to seal the hand pie. Use a long pronged fork to make indents around the edges. Use a sharp knife to add 2 to 3 slits on top of each pie to allow for air to be released. Lightly brush each completed hand pie and sprinkle with turbinado sugar on top of each one.

Cook for 25 to 30 minutes or until golden brown and fruit will be bubbling. Remove from baking sheet and let cool on a wire rack.


  1. These are so cute, Lisa! I love the apricot-cardamom filling and the way the juices bubble out during baking. Have a great weekend!

  2. I absolutely love the apricot in these! They look delicious!

  3. Hand pies are the best! So forgiving to make and also easily transported for my kids! Lovely idea for packing a summer picnic and using up all those not-so-perfect blueberries of the season!

  4. These are just perfect! Love the combination of fruit, and the cardamom sounds delicious! They are little and cute too :)

  5. WOW, Looks yummyly LOVELY :D


  6. Those are perfect for my dinner free evenings:))
    Great recipe, and very appealing pics too!

  7. I love handpies because they increase the ratio of crust to filling! The more crust, the better!

  8. Love hand pies of all flavors and these look wonderful. I made some peach and apricot a while back and they got gobble up fast!

  9. That really sounds lovely! And I'm a total crust girl, so hand pies are one of my favorite things to eat.

  10. Tkhese are the cutest little pies and just the perfect amount to satisfy your sweet tooth. Glad I stopped by your blog. I'll be back.

  11. What a tasty way to use your delicious Apricot Cardamom curd--these are lovely. I bet the blueberries and Cointreau were outstanding in these hand pies. The cardamom flavor is addictive!

    Is that the new board I see? Looks great in the pictures! Love the napkin/towel, too. :)

    1. Indeed the new board! Just love them. Thanks again for a great day!

  12. i'm with you, the secret to a great pie is the buttery flaky crust and your hand pies look like a winner :) And the blueberry syrup oozing, oh my! I want to sink my teeth into one!

  13. I'm so happy you are obsessed with cardamom. First time I tried cardamom for me was with Chai. My Indian friend made chai for me and that was my first seeing the real cardamom. It smells so good and I love that you added in baked goods! Must be so delicious!

  14. I have a jar of cardamom that I haven't used yet. To start with, I don't really know how to use them. Maybe it's time to try them with these hand pies. They look wonderful!


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