Friday, September 25, 2015

Mini Strawberry Streusel Pies

A good dose of ginger in the streusel topping and a bit of heavy cream in the strawberry filling makes these extra special.

Cooking and cooling the strawberry filling before making the pies also makes them easy to assemble.

One recipe makes about 20 of these babies so there are plenty for you and plenty for you to share. Your friends will be very happy.

Here's the recipe:

Mini Strawberry Streusel Pies
(makes 18 to 20)

Strawberry Filling:
2 lbs. frozen or fresh strawberries, sliced
2/3 cup sugar
2 teaspoons vanilla
pinch of sea salt
2 tablespoons cornstarch
1/3 cup heavy cream

Make this ahead of time and cool it completely before assembling the pies. In a saucepan, heat the strawberries, sugar, vanilla and sea salt until the mixture comes to a boil and the berries start to break apart. Keep an eye on it and keep stirring. Reduce the heat and simmer for 5 minutes. Dissolve cornstarch in the heavy cream and add it to the mixture, stirring constantly until the mixture comes back to a boil and thickens. Remove the filling from the heat and let it cool completely.

3 cups flour
1 cup Crisco
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup sugar
1 cup cold water

In a large bowl, combine flour, salt and sugar. Add Crisco and using your fingers, break it into the flour mixture until it resembles coarse crumbs with some large pieces remaining.

Add the water, just a few tablespoons at a time until the dough is moist enough to pull together into a ball. Divide dough in half and roll out each half into a rectangle on a floured surface. Use a cutter to cut 4-inch rounds and place each one in a muffin tin, pressing the dough into the bottom and evenly up the sides so that 2/3 of the tin is lined. Don't bring the dough all the way up the sides of the tin or you will end up with a muffin-shaped pie.  Gather up the excess dough and repeat until all the dough is used. Chill the crusts in the refrigerator for at least 15 minutes before adding the strawberry filling and streusel topping. Any extra strawberry filling is great on toast or ice cream!
Streusel Topping
1 1/4 cups flour
1/3 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 teaspoons ground ginger
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/3 teaspoon sea salt

Combine all of the ingredients in a medium-sized bowl, using your fingers to break apart the butter. The mixture should resemble coarse crumbs.

To Assemble And Bake:
Fill the mini pie crusts with the strawberry filling and top each with a sprinkle of the streusel topping.
The pies before adding the streusel topping.
Bake them in a 375-degree oven for about 12 minutes or until the crust and topping are golden brown and the filling is bubbling. Let the pies cool for just a bit before lifting them out of the muffin tins and transferring them to a cooling rack. If you let them cool too long in the tins, they will be hard to remove.
The pies after baking. Remove them from the tins before they cool too much or they will stick and place them on a cooling rack to cool completely.

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