Fried SweeTango Apple Hand Pie
Did you know that Andrew Zimmern is a Minnesota native? And he knows his Minnesota apples. Chef Zimmern says, “SweeTangos are my favorite apples, so when the short harvest season is in full swing, you better believe I stock up. Crunchy and juicy, tart yet sweet, they’re the perfect eating apples, but they also make for one killer pie filling.” He developed this recipe for the SweeTango growers’ cooperative in 2014. Pepin Heights is founding member of the cooperative.
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- 1 can evaporated milk (12 ounces)
- 1 beaten egg
- 5C all-purpose flour
- 1T salt
- 1T sugar
- 1C plus 1T lard or shortening
- Canola oil for frying
- Cinnamon and sugar for finishing
- 10 SweeTango apples (roughly one apple per cup of yield)
- 1/2C (1 stick) salted butter
- 1C brown sugar
- 1T ‘pumpkin pie’ spice
- 2T lemon juice
- 1/2t salt
Make the Pastry Dough
- Combine the milk and egg. Reserve. Combine flour, salt, and sugar. Cut in the shortening (I use a pastry wire). Combine the two mixtures, but don’t overwork. Cutting in as briefly as possible, work only until the dry mix is moistened. You don’t want clumps of dry mix, but when this dough over-mixes, the magic is gone. Roll into a ball, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for several hours or overnight.
Prepare the Apple Filling
- Peel and core 10 apples. Cut apples into half inch dice. Discard peels and cores.
- Heat a 14-inch non-stick sauté pan over medium heat. Add the butter and sugar. When foaming, add the apples, pumpkin pie spice and lemon juice. Turn the heat to medium-high.
- Cook for 15 to 20 minutes, tossing as you go. The apples should sweat and give off their liquids. Reduce the mixture until the butter and sugar become thick and caramel-ed around the cooked apples.
- Spill apples out onto a non-stick bakers mat fitted into a tray. Let cool.
Make the Apple Hand Pies
- Roll pastry out onto a lightly floured board. Make circles about 6 inches across and 1/8-inch thick.
- Fill half of the circle with apple mixture. Fold to make half moons. A turnover press works well.
- Place canola oil in a plug-in deep fryer or a large pot. Deep fry the apple hand pies at about 335 degrees for 6 to 7 minutes, or until nicely browned.
- Place hot pies directly from fryer onto a baking tray. As they come out of the fryer, sprinkle reasonably heavily with sugar seasoned with ground cinnamon.
Pepin Heights Orchards, Inc https://pepinheights.com/