Mini strawberry pies make a great snack

By Jim Bailey
theyankeechef.blogspot.com

I  do realize strawberry season here in Maine is a few months away, Yankee Chef logobut have you seen the price of strawberries from abroad lately? At $1.98 a quart, you bet I am going to take advantage of them. Those in California who believe their strawberries are superior, who am I to argue? But I must say that when you taste a just-picked New England strawberry, you will wonder, “Where have you been all my life?”

Mini-strawberry crunch pies
Enjoy these sweet treats one or two at a time. These tangerine-tinted mini-snacks are just right for the small hands to grab after school or to pick up through the day instead of reaching for that bag of chips or a chocolate bar.

ministrawberry pie

Mini-pies make a great snack or dessert.

2 cups strawberries, hulled and chopped roughly
1/2 teaspoon grated tangerine zest
Juice from one tangerine
1/4 cup sugar
1/4 cup flour
1/4 cup packed brown sugar
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
4 tablespoons melted butter or margarine
6 pastry circles*

1 heaping tablespoon cornstarch

Preheat oven to 350-degrees F. Toss strawberries in tangerine zest, tangerine juice and sugar, let sit on counter for 30 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the crumble topping in a bowl by mixing together flour, brown sugar, cinnamon and 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg. Add melted butter and mix with a fork until the mixture is moistened throughout, then set it aside.
Unroll prepared pie crust pastry onto a lightly floured work surface. Using a glass rim or cookie cutter that is about an inch larger than the circumference of the muffin tin you are using, cut out dough circles. Press them down into each muffin cups until 6 are filled. You may need to press the sides and bottom firmly into place.
Strain the juice from strawberries into a bowl and whisk the cornstarch into it until smooth. Add back to the strawberries and blend well. Evenly divide the strawberry mixture and accumulated juice into 6 dough-lined muffin cups. Evenly divide the topping among all six mini pies and bake for 35-40 minutes, or until the pies are bubbling and syrupy. Let cool completely.
To take the pies out of the muffin tin, use a teaspoon to  loosen the edges around each pie. Serve with whipped topping or ice cream.

*Buy the prepared single layer pie circles. Each 9- to 10-inch pastry circle will be enough to make about 6 mini pies.

Yankee Chef book coverSchiffer Books of Pennsylvania has released Jim Bailey’s new book The Yankee Chef: Feel Good Food for Every Kitchen. It contains more than 550 traditional New England comfort-food recipes tweaked for today’s palates with hundreds of kitchen tips and food facts. The hardback book is 312 pages and contains 200 color images. Its ISBN is 978-0-7643-4191-5 and the cost is $34.99. The book can be ordered through Misty Valley Books, 802-875-3400.

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Filed Under: Community and Arts LifeThe Yankee Chef

About the Author:

Jim Bailey is a third generation Yankee Chef, New England food historian and newspaper columnist. His first cookbook, simply titled The Yankee Chef, has been published. He welcomes all feedback, questions or comments at theyankeechef@aol.com.

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