These cute little pies were a long time in the making! Remember waaaay back in late September when I went apple picking out in Markham? I knew I would eventually make an apple pie, but I could not put my finger on a final version to try. First, I was thinking of an apple pie with a cheddar crust. Then I thought, oooo maybe a savory apple and onion tart! Wait, forget about pie, what about scones??? No, we need pie! Of course, after I found a rotten apple at the bottom of the bag I knew I had to chose a combination quickly.
I also knew I was going to make my pie crust from scratch…for the first time ever. Now, I’ve always known how to make a pie crust, I just never did it, because I always had a box of the ready made stuff in the freezer. After this past summer’s derecho left me with no power for a few days and lead to a complete purging of all the spoiled food in my fridge and freezer, I just never got around to getting another one. No biggie. Making your own pie crust is super simple and pretty quick. You can make up a batch of dough in the same amount of time it would take you to bundle up and drive out to the grocery store, check out, and drive back…actually quicker! I even experimented with using a stand mixer to mix the dough instead of pastry cutter. Worked amaaaazingly! No full size food processor needed like so many recipes call for. Yes!
You’ll love these little bite size morsels. A buttery, tender crust and the deliciously tart and spicy apple are the bits we already love about apple pie. The addition of earthy sage gives it that little bit of backbone and gives it a nice grounding. Nothing overly sweet, just pure flavor. Enjoy!
Sage Apple Pies
makes 12 mini pies
Pie Crust Ingredients
- 1 1/2 cups white whole wheat flour
- 1 tablespoons sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1 1/2 sticks very cold butter, cut into cubes
- 7 tablespoons ice cold water
Pie Crust Directions
- Fit your stand mixer with the paddle attachment
- In a chilled mixing bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, salt
- Add butter to the mixing bowl and return bowl to stand mixer
- On medium low speed, mix the flour and butter until the mixture is course and you see pea sized chunks of butter distributed throughout
- Reduce mixer speed to low
- Add water 1 tablespoon at a time until the dough just combines
- Shape dough into a ball and transfer to some plastic wrap
- Wrap dough in the plastic wrap and flatten slightly into a disk, which will make rolling out easier later
- Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes
- When ready, flour your work surface and begin rolling out the dough disk with a rolling pin
Sage Apple Filling Ingredients
- 1 ½ pounds cooking apples peeled, peeled and finely chopped
- Juice and Zest of 1 lemon
- ¼ Cup brown sugar
- 3 Tablespoon minced fresh sage leaves
- ½ Teaspoon cinnamon
- ½ Teaspoon nutmeg
- 1 Tablespoon all-purpose flour
- Zest lemon, then slice in half to juice. Place both in a medium size bowl. As you chop the apples place them in the lemon juice and toss to help reduce oxidation (browning).
- When finished chopping the apples, add all remaining pie filling ingredients and mix to combine. Cover with plastic wrap and set aside while you roll the dough.
Mini Pie Directions
- Preheat oven to 425°F and butter the inside of your cup cake pan.
- Dust your work surface with flour and begin rolling the pie dough to about 1/8″ thickness.
- Using a 4″ round cookie cutter, begin cutting disks of dough. When you have cut as many dough disks as possible, combine the scraps, re-roll and cut again until you have 24 disks. (Note: I only had a 3″ cookie cutter and had to use my rolling pine to spread the dough out enough to line the cupcake cavities. The dough got really thin, but it still worked pretty well!)
- Tuck a dough disk into each cupcake cavity using your fingers to gently press the dough against the sides.
- Using a fork, poke a few shallow holes (do not pierce the dough!) in the bottom to prevent dough from bubbling up during baking.
- Divide the pie filling evenly among the 12 mini-pies.
- Top each pie with the remaining 12 dough disks, again using your fingers to seal the bottom and top dough pieces together.
- With a sharp paring knife, cut three slits into the top of each pie to help steam vent during baking.
- Optional: sprinkle tops of pies with turbinado sugar for a nice sweet crunch.
- Bake pies for 15-18 minutes, or until golden brown.
- Allow to cool completely before removing mini pies from the cupcake pan.