Over the past week, I’ve been working at perfecting hand pies, and specifically, raspberry hand pies. Raspberries are especially suited for small pies like this because they seem to add just enough tart, to balance the slight sweetness of the filling and the buttery flakiness of the crust. Where a slice of raspberry pie might be pushing it, because of the tart, raspberry hand pies are perfect snack-sized alternatives. And, since are many ways of making raspberry hand pies, I decided to tackle two methods, outlined below.
Although the crust recipe remained constant, I took a different approach to putting together the raspberry pie filling for each. I also used different’toppings’ for each hand pie recipe, with one using a homemade frosting and the other just getting a generous showering of Turbinado Sugar.
1st Recipe – Raspberry Hand Pies with a Frosted Coat
The raspberry pie filling for my first batch of raspberry hand pies used an approach I have used for other berry pies like our Triple Berry Pie. This process entailed taking the raspberries, and heating over medium heat to break them down, then adding in sugar and other ingredients. This creates an almost ‘jam’ like filling, which when done, is set aside to completely cool before adding to the crust.
For the topping I put together a frosting using powdered sugar and milk, although I added in a bit of heavy cream to create a thicker more fulfilling frosting, which was much more satisfying (although it did make the hand pies pretty sticky)
2nd Recipe – Raspberry Hand Pies with Sprinkled Sugar Topping
My second patch, took a more traditional (and quicker) approach to the filling, by essentially taking the fruit and tossing it together with sugar and other items. The result being, a filling that kept the shape of the fruit largely intact.
For the topping, I sprinkled Turbinado Cane Sugar over egg-washed pastry, which gave the hand pies a browner and coarse look.
Which of the Raspberry Hand Pies Came Out Better
Both versions of the hand pie were delicious in their own right, which each bringing something different, in both look and taste to the table.
The first batch was pretty but the flavor was strong. I wasn’t hugely fond of the stickiness of the pie, very much like a sticky cinnamon bun, even though it did add to the taste of the hand pie. And, the tartness of the raspberries wasn’t as evident with this particular recipe.
The second batch had more tart, and wasn’t as sweet as the first, but it seemed sweet enough. I liked the coarse sugar topping better than the frosted topping and I enjoyed the fruit more wholesome than the “jelly” consistency of the first batch. It had more texture.
And so, the path forward will be with the 2nd batch of raspberry hand pies, although I may have to find an additional set of “taste buds” to help add additional insight to this most difficult of choices!