To coordinate with our Curious Chef review and theme week, I decided to invite my borrowed children over for more messy fun. I decided that it would be fun to make miniature fruit pies, and the girls were really excited about the idea.
I have to say - they were little pros with the Curious Chef knives. You wouldn't know that you are looking at the hands of a 5 and 8 year old from the photos! And because they were plastic and kid-friendly, the girls weren't even scared to start chopping away!
The girls gave the pies a 5 Spoons up, while I gave them a 4. I'm not terribly fond of peach pie. Please don't let the state of Georgia kick me out for saying that :)
My Mom's Pie Crust
makes 4 crusts/2 full pies (so halve or even quarter this one)*
4 heaping c. flour
2 tsp. salt
1 3/4 c. butter flavor Crisco, diced and chilled
1 egg, beaten
ice water added to egg to make 2/3 c.
Combine flour and salt in a large bowl. Cut shortening into the flour until the mixture resembles coarse meal. Stir in the egg water mixture until it forms a soft dough. Do not overwork the dough or it will become tough! Roll out on floured surface and cut with 4" circles for the bottom crusts, and 3 1/4" circles for the lid crusts. Cut small shapes out of the lids to vent. Spray a muffin pan with cooking spray, and place a bottom crust into each hole, pressing the excess crust up the sides.
* Yes, our family is all about pie. It wouldn't be a family gathering without at least 4 different kinds of pie.
Peach and Strawberry Fruit Filling
8 oz fresh strawberries
10 oz peaches (we used frozen thawed slices w/ their juice)
1/2 - 1 c. sugar, dependent on how tart your fruit is
1/2 tsp. cinnamon
1 Tbsp. flour
Chop the fruit into 1/2" sized chunks and put into a medium-sized mixing bowl. Stir in the remaining ingredients. Spoon into prepared mini-crusts, filling each about 3/4 full. Place lid crust on each. Bake at 400 degrees for 10 minutes, then at 350 degrees for 20-30 minutes or until fruit filling is bubbly. Allow to cool 10 minutes before removing from pan.
The 5 year old chopping pro!
The 8 year old chopping pro!
Naomi dicing the chilled shortening:
Naomi used our Curious Chef rolling pin to make the lid crusts.
She loved that it fit her little hands!
Vienne did an amazing job with the bottom crusts!!
Spooning the filling into the bottom crusts:
Cutting the top crust vents:
After cooling 10 minutes, they pop right out of the pan:
The girls did such an amazing job!!!
p.s. I'm giving away a set of super-handy Curious Chef Pinch Bowls on my personal blog. Go there to enter!!!
p.p.s. I've been mulling over doing an entire how-to with pie crust. Would that be useful?? If you're interested, please let me know!! I don't want to bombard you with tedious crust-making steps if I'm the only one who's obsessed with pie crust :)