Chocolate Hand Pies – Eat With Your Eyes


Ingredients: 1 recipe double pie crust,3 1/4 cups milk,1/2 cup plus 2 tsps sugar,3 fine strips lemon zest,7 egg yolks,1 whole egg,1/4 teaspoon salt,1/2 cup all-purpose flour,1 tablespoon vanilla extract,3 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided,1/2 cup cocoa powder, unsweetened or Dutch process,1 egg yolk,1 teaspoon water,1 teaspoon milk,1/2 cup thinly sliced almonds, lightly toasted,Powdered sugar

  1. On a lightly floured surface, roll out pie dough to about 1/8-1/4 inch in thickness.
  2. Using a small bowl as a stencil, about 4 inches in diameter, cut out circles of dough and place on a parchment lined baking sheet.
  3. As you fill up each baking sheet, place the circles in the refrigerator to chill while you gather up the dough scraps, roll out, and cut more circles. If dough becomes too warm, return it to the refrigerator for 15 minutes to chill.
  4. Allow the dough circles to chill for at least 1 hour and up to 1 day.
  5. While the dough chills, make the pastry cream.
  6. In a double boiler or heatproof bowl set over a pan of simmering water, heat the milk, 2 tsps of the sugar and the lemon zest, just to a boil.
  7. Meanwhile, whisk the remaining 1/2 cup of sugar, egg yolks, whole egg, and salt in a small bowl until thick and pale yellow in color, 2-3 minutes.
  8. Sift in the flour gradually, whisking vigorously to mix.
  9. Slowly drizzle in 1/2 cup of the boiling milk into the egg mixture to temper then pour the eggs back into the milk.
  10. Cook over medium high heat, whisking frequently, until thickened, 2-3 minutes.
  11. As the mixture begins to thicken and reach a boil it may look lumpy but whisk briskly to smooth.
  12. When it reaches the consistency of mayonnaise, reduce the heat and cook 1 minute more whisking constantly.
  13. Remove from the heat, add the vanilla and stir in the butter 1 Tb at a time.
  14. Cool as quickly as possible by placing the bowl in a larger bowl of ice water. Be careful not to let any water leak into the cream!
  15. Press plastic wrap over the top to prevent a skin from forming and chill in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour.
  16. Pastry cream will keep in refrigerator for 4-5 days or in the freezer for 2 months.
  17. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
  18. Remove the pastry cream from the refrigerator and allow to come up to room temperature.
  19. Whisk in the 1/2 cup of cocoa until mixture is smooth.
  20. In a small bowl, mix together the egg yolk and water
  21. In another small bowl mix together the milk and 2 tsps of the chocolate pastry cream.
  22. Remove the dough circles from the fridge one baking sheet at time and place 3-4 Tbs of chocolate pastry cream on one side of each circle, leaving a 1-inch border.
  23. With a pastry brush, paint the egg and water mixture on the edges and fold the naked side of the dough over the side with the pastry cream to form a half moon shape.
  24. Crimp with the edges of a fork to seal.
  25. Paint the top with the milk and chocolate pastry cream glaze and sprinkle on the sliced almonds.
  26. Repeat with remaining dough circles.
  27. Bake hand pies for 18-22 minutes until golden.
  28. Cool completely on a wire rack and dust with powdered sugar.
  29. Store hand pies in an airtight container in the refrigerator.


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