Another Delve into Mini Pies!

Yesterday was the LA Blogger Bake Sale! As some of you may know, I listed a few of my ideas for what I would bring in a previous post. None of those treats made it to the final cut. Instead, I made mini pies! How else could I represent my blog?? I made two types: raspberry with chocolate ganache and buttermilk whiskey pies. Can you tell that I love whiskey? — Check out my other Jameson desserts here and here —

The bake sale raised money for the No Kid Hungry Campaign, and with over 30 bloggers’ contributions as well as popular bakeries Magnolia, Milk, Sprinkles and more, we were able to raise over $700! Of course there were leftovers, but they were all donated to various charities around the area. I really had a wonderful time preparing these treats and can’t wait for next year. A HUGE shout out to Chung-Ah over at Damn Delicious for organizing this event and fight on (she’s a fellow Trojan :D)!

To make these mini pies, I made the same flaky butter crust that I used for my Chicken Chile Relleno Handheld Pies. This crust is perfection and works for everything, sweet or savory. Best of all? It is SO easy to make! I use a pastry blender and the dough comes together beautifully in five minutes or less. Once you make the dough and chill it, roll it out and cut circles with a biscuit cutter or wide rimmed glass. Gently lift the circles and press them into nonstick muffin pans. The trick is to keep the dough relatively thick, and not too thin, and the final product will easily lift from the tin.

Because I made two batches of pies, I made the dough twice, keeping them in separate cling wrap in the fridge. I also doubled the recipe for the fillings because I wanted to make roughly 24 of each.

Buttermilk Whiskey Pie – makes about 12 structured pies (from Handheld Pies)

1 recipe flaky butter crust; AP flour for dusting; 4 eggs; 1 1/2 cups buttermilk; 3/4 cup packed light brown sugar; 1/2 cup butter (melted); 3 tablespoons whiskey; 1 teaspoon vanilla extract; freshly grated nutmeg for sprinklng

Remove dough, cut and place in muffin tins as instructed above. Return the muffin tins to the refrigerator for 30 minutes. In a bowl, whisk the eggs until blended. Add the buttermilk, brown sugar, butter, whiskey and vanilla and whisk until smooth. Image

Remove the dough lined muffin tins from the refrigerator. Fill each cup two-thirds full with the buttermilk mixture. Refrigerate the assembled pies for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 350°F.Image

Bake pies until filling is slightly puffed and lightly browned, about 20 minutes. Filling should jiggle slightly when a tins is gently shaken.

Let cool on a baking rack for 45 minutes before serving. Run a sharp, thin knife around the edge of each pie to loosen it from the cup. Gently lift it out with a knife or fork. Sprinkle the tops of the pies with nutmeg, if desired. Serve warm or at room temperature.

These pies will keep for 2 days in an airtight container.

Raspberry Chocolate Pies – makes about 24 pies (adapted from Handheld Pies)

Bittersweet Ganache Filling

8 oz. bittersweet chocolate (62%-72%); 3/4 cup heavy cream; 2 tablespoons unsalted butter

Coarsley chop chocolate by hand and place in a large bowl. Heat cream over medium heat in a small saucepan until bubbles begin to form around the edges of the pan. Remove from heat and pour over the chocolate. Let stand for 5 minutes, then stir with a spoon until smooth. Stir in butter until melted.

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Let cool and use immediately, or cover and refrigerate for up to 2 weeks.

Raspberry (or Other Tart Berry) Filling 

4 cups fresh raspberries; 1/3 cup packed light brown sugar; 2 tablespoon all purpose flour; 1 teaspoon lemon zest; pinch of salt

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In a bowl, combine all ingredients, adding sugar to taste. Mix gently so as not to crush raspberries. Use immediately.

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Assembling Pies

Preheat oven to 375°F. Prepare muffin tins as written above and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Spoon 1-2 teaspoons of ganache into the bottom of each pie.Image

Top with raspberries.

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Bake in oven for 20 minutes, or until crust is golden brown. Allow to cool on a baking rack for at least an hour before serving. Use a sharp knife to cut around the pie and lift it out of the tin.

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Pies will keep for up to 2 days in an airtight container of frozen for up to 2 months. Reheat in a 375°F oven for 10-12 minutes.

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