Thursday, September 21, 2017

Peach Hand Pies

My husband LOVES hand pies! It is a good thing I know how to make them or I would fear he loved them more than me! There is just something so amazing about being able to eat pie with your hands! If you haven't done that, you haven't lived! These are a breakfast food as well as dessert in my house!  I found the recipe for the peaches (the best!) here. I always use my favorite pie crust (see below). Now, get going!

Peach Hand Pies
(about 20)

Pie Crust
(adapted from Bon Appetite)

2 1/2 cups flour
2 t sugar
1/4 t salt
1 cup (2 stick) cold butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
6 T ice water (or more)

1 egg
1 T milk 
whisk this together
(this is for brushing on the dough)

Whisk together flour, sugar, and salt in a large bowl.  Add butter, rub with your fingertips until the mixture resembles course meal.  Add 6 T ice water and toss with a fork until moist clumps form, add more ice water, 1 teaspoon at a time if the mixture is too dry.  Gather dough into a ball and flatten into two disks.  Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.  Roll out one disk at a time on a lightly floured surface until about 1/8 inch thick. Cut out as many 4 inch circles as you can. Repeat with other disk.  While the dough disks are in the fridge, make the peach filling. 

Peach Filling

5 medium to large peaches
1/2 cup sugar
2 T corn starch
1/2 t cinnamon
dash of salt
juice of 1/2 a lemon
a few drops of almond extract (this enhances the peach flavor!)

Peel and dice the peaching into 1/2" pieces. Place the diced peaches in a bowl and sprinkle with the sugar. Toss to combine.  Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and set aside for an hour. After an hour, drain the juice into a medium sauce pan.  Set aside the diced peaches. Whisk in the cinnamon, cornstarch and salt.  Cook over medium heat until the syrup boils. Whisking constantly, cook for about 2 minutes or until the syrup thickens. Remove from the heat and stir in the lemon juice and the almond extract.  Gently fold in the diced peaches and any extra juice.  Set aside to cool while you roll out the dough.

1 cup Powdered Sugar
1 T milk
a few drops vanilla extract
a few drops almond extract

Putting it all together:

Preheat oven to 350. Take a 4 inch dough round to a lightly floured surface and brush it with the egg and milk mixture.  Place a Tablespoon of peaches in the middle and fold the sides up like a taco. Gently pinch the sides together starting at one end and working to the middle. Lay the hand pie on its side and seal the edges using the tines of a fork.  Poke a couple of holes in the top, using your fork, to vent it.  Place the hand pie on a cookie sheet covered in parchment paper and repeat with the remaining dough circles.  Bake the pies for 30 minutes or until golden at 350.  While they are baking, whisk together the icing.  When they are hot out of the oven, gently brush the pies with the icing.  Cool as long as you can!  They are so yummy warm!

** If you have left over peach filling (I always do) place the peaches in a small oven safe dish.  Mix together a couple tablespoons oats, a couple tablespoons melted butter, a dash of cinnamon and a couple tablespoons brown sugar.  Put this onto of the peaches and bake at 350 until bubbly and lightly browned!

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Corn and Zucchini Chowder

Such yummy soup! It is still so hot here in Texas, but I am so ready for soup! Sorry family, we are eating soup even if it is nearly 100 degrees! I found this recipe here.

Corn and Zucchini Chowder
(about 6 servings)

1 T Butter
2 strips bacon, chopped
1 cup diced yellow onion
2 celery ribs, chopped (about 1/3 cup)
1 medium carrot, chopped (about 1/2 cup)
2 cloves garlic, minced
1/2 t dried thyme
2 medium russet potatoes (about 1 lb.) peele, and diced into 1/2-inch cubes
4 cups of water
1 bay leaf
4 ears of fresh corn, husk and silk removed and kernels cut from the cob (about 2 3/4 cup)
1 medium zucchini, diced into 1 inch cubes (about 1 1/2 cups)
1 cup half and half
salt and fresh ground pepper to taste
chopped fresh parsley, for garnish
cayenne pepper, to serve

In a large heavy bottomed pot or dutch oven, melt butter over medium heat. Add bacon and cook until bacon renders its fat and begins to brown. About 3-4 minutes.
Add onion, celery, carrots, garlic and thyme. Cook until veggies begin to soften, stirring multiple times.  About 5 minutes.
Add potatoes, water and bay leaf. Raise the heat to medium high and bring to a simmer, then lower the heat back to medium and simmer for 8-10 minutes or until the potatoes are halfway cooked.
Add zucchini and corn.  Season with salt and pepper to taste, and simmer for an additional 8-12 minutes or until the veggies are completely tender.
Discard bay leaf and then transfer 2 cups of the soup to a blender or food processor. Puree until smooth. Stir the mixture back into the pot.  Add half and half and cook until heated through. Adjust seasonings and serve with fresh parsley and a sprinkle of cayenne pepper.

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