Hand Pies

Despite already having way too many kitchen toys, last month I couldn’t resist a set of hand pie molds on sale in a catalog of cooking fripperies.  I had never heard the phrase “hand pies” until I moved to Minnesota and even then, I don’t hear it often. 

Now that YA and I are overloaded with apples from our trip to the orchard on Sunday, I decided to try out one of my new molds – the apple one.  I didn’t use any particular recipe, just some thinly chopped apples with sugar and a bit of cinnamon.  At the last minute I tossed in a half cup of raspberries from my canes.  I also used refrigerated pie dough (Trader Joe’s) since I wasn’t sure how it would all come together.  I hate wasting dough made from scratch!

They turned out pretty well considering that I was just winging it.  I figured out pretty quickly that flour was needed in the mold and that although I was using an egg wash on the outside, I should have used water as the binder between the two layers of pastry.  The last issue is one I’ve encountered before; when working with store-bought pie dough, you have to really work the edges together when you roll out the scrap pieces or they don’t hold.  I know this but didn’t follow through well because I was rushing a bit (I had already made an apple crisp at YA’s request).  They turned out OK but not as pretty as any of the online pictures.  That’s OK, I didn’t expect masterpieces the first time around.

The good news is that even though they weren’t picture-perfect, they taste great.  The addition of the raspberries gave them a bit of a twang and being able to pick up your pie and eat it without a fork or spoon is a lot of fun.  Maybe I’ll try blueberries next time around.

What kind of food have you discovered as an adult? 

40 thoughts on “Hand Pies”

      1. I should add to this that my mother would on rare occasions make German potato pancakes as a treat for my dad. I don’t remember eating them. She complained they were so much work to make. But I think the issue was that his German mother made them for him. My mother and her mother-in-law did not get along despite or because of the language barrier. I made them and did not find them that much work. Much prefer lahtkes, which I made often.

        Liked by 4 people

  1. I was raised in a very meat and potatoes type of family. I discovered that I really liked vegetables in my late 20s. I taught myself to cook vegetarian, at first with lots of cheese ala Mollie Katzen. Then I tried my hand at stir fries with brown rice and Italian sauces with pasta. Chutneys and pesto came next. I would have to ask: what HAVEN’T I discovered?

    Liked by 4 people

  2. Husband and I typically don’t make salsa from scratch. We rarely buy it in the store since we don’t eat chips, but we had some really nice peppers and tomatoes in the garden that Husband decided to roast yesterday and make some nice salsa. It was plain, only tomatoes, chilies, and onions with lime juice and salt.

    After moving out here we discovered the food of the Germans from Russia, which is much different than any German food Husband and I had been exposed to growing up. It is, quite frankly, awful food, the cuisine of poor people who took the worst ideas for eating from all the regions they lived in after they left Germany. People out here get really nostalgic for it. I find it doughy, heavy, and fat laden, with very little seasoning.

    Winnipeg is a culinary treasure, where the food of the numerous immigrant groups is celebrated and ethnic grocery stores flourish. I learned of so many different kinds of food there. I had Portugese and Hungarian food there for the first time.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. As you all know, I’m passionate about food. I count myself lucky that I was introduced to a fairly wide variety of different foods as a child and a teen. But growing up in post-WWII Denmark, the fruits and vegetables I was exposed to were pretty much limited to what could be grown locally. I love tomatoes; still do. Things like asparagus (the white kind), brussels sprouts, cucumbers, kale, celeriac, leeks, carrots, peas, potatoes, horseradish, and various cabbages were very familiar to me. We foraged for our own wild mushrooms. Parsley and chives were pretty much the only herbs I knew. Salt, pepper, bay leaves, and Madras curry powder were the staples of our seasoning cabinet.

    Once I started traveling that changed, but because I had already tried such an array of different ingredients, I never hesitated to dive in. The Italian cooks at the hospital in Basel were my introduction to authentic Italian food, and I was hooked.

    I had never seen an avocado or a plantain until I arrived in the US, and cilantro was an accidental discovery once I moved to the West Side of St. Paul in 1974. I was introduced to pesto – made from basil – by a friend in Minneapolis. With the arrival of the Hmong farmers at the St. Paul Farmers’ Market, a whole new world opened up.

    Liked by 6 people

    1. I love roasted vegetables. Cauliflower tossed with a bit of curry powder, olive oil, finely minced garlic, and salt and sprinkled with chopped chives and cilantro and/or parsley after it comes out of the oven is heavenly.

      Liked by 1 person

  4. I think broccoli was the first delight once I was out on my own,, soon followed by cauliflower. I knew asparagus existed, but who knew it was so good FRESH rather than canned! Winter squash, zucchini… we could go on for a while here.

    I remember learning at Mary’s Restaurant in Greenwich Village that Northern Italian (more white sauces) food was much different from the Southern red sauce based…

    Liked by 3 people

  5. I am completely self taught in the kitchen. My mom does not like to cook, never really learned to cook from her mother and never passed on any of the few skills that she has in the kitchen. The only pie she ever made was apple pie, but she never invited either my sister or I into the kitchen to help her. She always saw cooking as just a chore not a joy to be shared or passed on.

    Liked by 3 people

  6. The first time I had guacamole was at a college function when I was a student at St. Kate’s. I think I amused one of my professors by how much I loved it, but he even encouraged me to take some home afterwards. I still order it whenever I have the chance, whether at Cafe Latte or Chipotle.

    Liked by 5 people

  7. Never ate a fish taco until about five years ago. Where have you been all my life?? (Especially the fish tacos at the now-closed Chill Aqui in Owatonna. Those are life changers!)

    We’ve also gotten into kale. First tried it years ago when we bought shares in a CSA. Didn’t like it much other than mixed in with other veggies to make “green soup.” Then my wife found a delicious kale salad recipe that has become a staple.

    Chris in Owatonna

    Liked by 3 people

    1. You were lucky, in a way, that your first fish taco experience was a good one. For a while, as an experiment, I ordered fish tacos whenever they were on the menu. Some were great, some minimalist and a couple were disappointments. The worst one had fish and a big dollop of mayo, shredded iceberg lettuce and little or no seasoning. Fish tacos are clearly more variable than other kinds of taco.

      Liked by 3 people

  8. I was a very picky eater as a child (and still am to some degree as an adult). Once out on my own, I discovered the world of vegetables – broccoli, fresh asparagus, roasted Brussels sprouts, zucchini, roasted cauliflower, fresh baby spinach, butternut and buttercup squash, bell peppers (except green), snap peas, some kale (depends on how it is prepared), red onion. There are two kinds of food that I didn’t like as a child and still don’t like – Indian cuisine and seafood/fish (except salmon or the occasional shrimp).

    Liked by 3 people

    1. If you don’t like Indian cuisine, it may be that you’ve only tried certain dishes with certain spice blends. Curry powder is heavy on the turmeric, and not everyone likes the flavor. You might like something made with garam masala, which leans more toward cumin, cinnamon, and cardamom.

      Liked by 3 people

  9. Meat and potatoes growing up for me too. Kelly taught me about asparagus. She tried me on a few more of the rather ‘exotic’ vegetables, but I don’t do them. I don’t think I ever had Chinese food growing up. Unless you count chicken chowmein as a hotdish… Church and family picnic Pot luck dinners was pretty exotic to me. Dad didn’t like pasta, so to find a hotdish with noodles on top was exciting!

    In my German language class we learned about bratwurst with some kind of hot sauce on them. (Never had a brat growing up either) Mom made them a few times, but I’m sure Dad didn’t like them… and I’m not a fan of anything very spicy either so don’t know what became of them.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. There is a scene in one of the Capote movies – there were two film biographies, and I can’t remember for sure which one it is – where Capote is in Nebraska and goes to a grocery store to buy cheese, and all they have is a big refrigerator case of Velveeta. I was skeptical about that scene. I grew up in Wisconsin, and Velveeta wasn’t much of a thing. There was a lot of farmer cheese, sometimes with caraway seeds, swiss, cheddar, and colby. No brie or roquefort or anything like that, but it seems to me there was a lot of white cheese. I especially liked the caraway kind.

      Liked by 4 people

      1. Wisconsin grocery stores usually had brick and muenster as well. And mozzerella. Not so much orange. Maybe it was because the dairy industry was so important in Wisconsin – they wouldn’t allow margarine for many years.

        Liked by 3 people

      2. I have spent considerably more time in Wisconsin that in Nebraska, and though I can’t testify to what the most popular cheeses in Nebraska are (or were at the time depicted in that movie), I can attest to the fact that those two states have very little in common. I think of Nebraska as one of the most desolate places in the US that I’ve seen, and I wouldn’t be surprised if it’s Velveeta cheese that holds it together.

        Liked by 3 people

        1. I don’t know much about Nebraska either, but seeing that scene in the movie just made me think “Oh, come on, it’s a farm state, they must have some farmer cheeses!” But maybe I’m wrong. Maybe Wisconsin was just an outlier in the 50’s and 60’s. I don’t think I had any experience with American slices until I was a teenager.

          Liked by 1 person

      3. I grew up with the large block of pre-sliced American cheese. I didn’t know there was other cheeses! And now the sticky AMERICAN slices kinda gross me
        Out.
        But I do miss getting our cheese and butter from the bulk truck milkman. We could order what we wanted, and he’d take the slip in and he’d bring it out the next pick up. Course if it was 90° some Summer day… maybe don’t order the block Of cheese that day….
        Sometimes we’d go to the scale house at the dairy and pick up what we wanted. Gave them our member number (440. When I started it became 10440) and they deducted it from the milk check.

        After I sold the cows, I’d still stop at the main office and they had a little cooler. 10 lbs butter, string cheese, some shredded cheddar, and later on, pudding cups. For a while they only had the gallon size tin of pudding. That’s a lot of pudding!

        Liked by 2 people

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