Offbeat Bites: Miniature Cherry Pies

Chef’s note: This recipe is cute, easy, and delicious, with flavorful cherries and rich cream cheese. These adorable little pies taste far better than any fast food version, and make a great gift to your friends.

The crust can be made beforehand, or simply store bought, though nothing compares to homemade pie crust. (Check out this link for an excellent pie dough recipe!) You may have extra crust or extra filling, depending on how much crust you use. This recipe, when made using enough crust for one regular closed pie, will produce three or four miniature pies, with extra filling.

This recipe was adapted from this recipe, so be sure to check out their version as well.

When you make these pies using store bought dough there are remarkably few ingredients, and the pies are quite easy to make.
When you make these pies using store bought dough there are remarkably few ingredients, and the pies are quite easy to make.

Ingredients:

  • pie crust, enough for one to two closed pies, either homemade or store bought

  • 1 14.5 ounce can of pitted sour cherries, packed in water, drained

  • ¼ cup of granulated sugar

  • 1 tablespoon of cornstarch

  • 1 ½ tablespoon of water

  • 8 ounces cream cheese

  • ⅓ cup of powdered sugar

  • ¼ teaspoon of almond extract

  • 2 tablespoons of raw (turbinado) sugar

  • 1 egg, beaten with 1 tablespoon of water (egg wash)

 

Preheat oven to 450F. Line baking sheet with baking parchment. Grease parchment with butter.

The cherry mixture should be thickened and resemble cherry pie filling.
The cherry mixture should be thickened and resemble cherry pie filling.

In a medium saucepan, bring water, cornstarch, ¼ cup sugar, and cherries to a boil. Reduce to a simmer and cook for about 4 minutes, stirring often. Set aside and cool.

You may have to clean the beaters a few times before the cream cheese is thoroughly blended with the sugar. The cheese clogs up the beaters easily.
You may have to stop and clean the beaters a few times before the cream cheese is thoroughly blended with the sugar. The cheese clogs up the beaters easily.

Beat cream cheese, powdered sugar, and almond extract together until smooth.

It is preferable to use a sharp metal biscuit cutter, but if you cannot find one that is 5-inches across then use a bowl of a similar size.
It is preferable to use a sharp metal biscuit cutter, but if you cannot find one that is 5-inches across then use a bowl of a similar size.

If using your own dough, roll it out to ¼ inch thick. Using a biscuit cutter about 5 inches in diameter, cut out round disks for the pies.

Be sparing with the cheese layer - no matter how delicious the cheese spread is, you will want to have enough room for your cherry filling as well. Save the extra cheese spread for breakfast, it's delicious on a bagel or slice of toast.
Be sparing with the cheese layer – no matter how delicious the cheese spread is, you will want to have enough room for your cherry filling as well. Save the extra cheese spread for breakfast, it’s delicious on a bagel or slice of toast.

Layer each disk with a thin smear of cream cheese.

Only a small amount of cherry filling is needed.
Only a small amount of cherry filling is needed.

Arrange the disks on the prepared baking sheet. Atop the cream cheese layer, add about 2 tablespoons of the cherry mixture.

Don’t fret if you overfilled the pies, just wipe away the excess.
Don’t fret if you overfilled the pies, just wipe away the excess.

Brush the edges of the disks with egg wash, fold in half, and crimp the edges with a fork. If any extra cherry filling squeezes out, don’t worry about it.

The egg wash, sugar, and slit on top are merely decorative, but overall give the finished pie a more professional look.
The egg wash, sugar, and slit on top are merely decorative, but overall give the finished pie a more professional look.

Cut a small slit in the semicircles using a sharp knife. Brush the tops with egg wash, and sprinkle the raw sugar over top.

If you overfilled the pies, the excess filling on the baking sheet will have burned. This has no impact on the flavor of the pies.
If you overfilled the pies, the excess filling on the baking sheet will have burned. This has no impact on the flavor of the pies.

Bake for 15 minutes, or until golden. Serve immediately, or at room temperature.

All photos by Lauren Quinn

 

Print Friendly, PDF & Email
Bookmark and Share

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *