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Damson Plum Preserves Hand Pie



Hand Pie Dough

5 cups all-purpose flour

2 tablespoons sugar

¼ teaspoon salt

1⅔ cups butter, chilled and cut into small pieces

1 cup chilled buttermilk

2 teaspoons apple cider vinegar

Damson Plum Preserves Hand Pie Filling

4 pounds Damson plums

½ cup water

7 cups granulated sugar

2 tablespoons apple cider vinegar

½ cup sorghum syrup

Assembling Hand Pies

3 eggs

Canola oil or lard, as needed


Hand Pie Dough

  1. In large bowl, mix flour, sugar, salt, and butter together well. 
  2. Transfer mixture to food processor, and pulse 3 to 4 times at about 4 seconds per pulse, until mixture is texture of coarse meal.
  3. Return mixture to bowl, add buttermilk and vinegar, and work liquids into crumbly mixture with hands. As dough begins to form, fold it over itself. This process will create layers, ensuring a flaky crust. 
  4. Once dough has come together, transfer to floured surface and divide in half. Wrap each half tightly in plastic and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, or overnight.

Damson Plum Preserves Hand Pie Filling

  1. Cut 2 slits to make an “x” in bottom of each plum and blanch in hot water for 2 minutes.
  2. Transfer plums to ice bath. Peel when cooled.
  3. Cut each plum in half and remove pit.
  4. In saucepan, combine all ingredients and cook on low, stirring often so not to settle and burn. Cook until plums have broken down and mixture is thick, about 12-15 minutes.
  5. Cool or process in 4 pint jars or use immediately to fill hand pies.

Assembling Hand Pies

  1. On gently floured surface, roll out pie dough to ¼-inch thick. 
  2. Working quickly, use 4½-inch ring mold to cut out circles.
  3. Discard leftover pieces and refrigerate circles for 10 minutes.
  4. Beat 3 eggs for egg wash and set aside.
  5. Working in batches, remove 3 to 4 circles at a time from refrigerator. Brush edges of dough circle lightly with egg wash. Place 1-2 tablespoons filling in center and fold. Press down around edges thoroughly, sealing with fingers or a fork. 
  6. Transfer finished hand pies to refrigerator while working on remaining circles. 
  7. Fry hand pies in cast-iron skillet filled with 3 inches canola oil or lard at 350 degrees until golden brown. Note: You can also bake on cookie sheet for 14 minutes at 350 degrees. If you choose to bake the pies, then brush tops with more egg wash and sprinkle black pepper on the apple one for added spice.
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