We are officially entering fruit season, which means juicy local berries galore. Fresh fruit ready to be cooked and filled in flaky pastry is a spring and summer staple in my home. Of course I love making pie, but that’s not the only way to showcase seasonal fruit; there are many other ways to make delicious pastries using the same pie filling. I used the filling from Martha Stewart’s Rhubarb-Strawberry Pie for my four desserts here, but pretty much any fruit-based pie filling will work.
No pie plate? No problem. Use your fruit filling to make a rustic French-style galette. For this pastry you may not use all of the prepared filling, and you will only need dough for a single crust pie.
Roll out your pastry dough in a large circle on a sheet of parchment paper, then place the filling in the center and fold over the crust. Transfer to a baking sheet, brush with egg wash. sprinkle with sugar, then bake at 375 degrees until juices in the center are bubbling, about 50 to 60 minutes.
Traditional Lattice Pie
Probably the most obvious way to use your filling is to make a delicious pie with a flaky lattice crust. In addition to the filling, you will need dough for a double-crust pie. Once the pie is filled, lattice the top. Trim the edges then fold and crimp the crust. Brush with egg wash, sprinkle with sugar, then bake at 375 degrees until juices in the center are bubbling, about 90 minutes.
These hand-held pastries are portable and delicious and one of my favorite things to make for parties. They do take the most time in terms of prep, but these sweet little treats are worth the effort.
To make hand pies, in addition to the filling (you will likely only use about half the quantity needed for a regular pie), you’ll also need dough for a double-crust pie.
Roll the dough out, then use a large biscuit cutter to cut circular disks. Brush each of the disks with egg wash, then spoon filling into the center. Top with a second dough circle to fully enclose the pie, then press to seal the edges. I used a fork to press in a decorative crust design. Cut small air vents into the top, then brush with egg wash and sprinkle with sugar. Repeat the process with all the hand pies. Transfer to a parchment lined baking sheet, then bake at 375 degrees until juices in the center are bubbling, about 40 to 50 minutes.
Skip the traditional pie dough and make a cobbler! It calls for biscuits to top the fruit filling. I used the biscuits from Martha Stewart’s Best Berry Cobbler, and they worked perfectly.
Place the filling in a deep baking dish, then top with biscuit dough. Brush biscuits with melted butter, sprinkle with sugar, then bake at 375 degrees until juices in the center are bubbling and biscuits are golden, about 45 to 55 minutes.
Which style of pastry suits your fancy? Give them all a try; it’s easy to make a delicious dessert with your favorite fruit pie filling.
This article was first published on the MarthaStewart.com Network on May 26, 2016.
Photos: Steven Karl Metzer