Fried Apple Pies
Ingredients for Pastry:
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup shortening, chilled
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 cup ice-cold water
Ingredients for Apple Filling:
- 2 apples
- 1/2 cup packed dark brown sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon cinnamon, or to taste
- Sift flour and salt together. Cut in the shortening with a pastry blender until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Add cold water 1 tablespoon at a time and mix with fork. When the flour mixture is moistened, gather it into a ball, wrap it in plastic, and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
- Peel and dice the apples and place them in a saucepan. Combine the brown sugar and cinnamon; pour over the apples and toss to coat. Cook, covered, in a saucepan on low heat. Cook until soft, then mash with fork to form a thick applesauce. Allow to cool.
- Transfer the dough to a lightly floured work surface. Roll the dough out to 1/8 inch thick and cut rounds with a large cookie cutter (4 inches in diameter).
- In each round, place 1 heaping tablespoon fruit. Moisten edges with cold water, fold in half, and press edge with a fork to seal. Repeat with the remaining pastry and filling.
- Heat oil in a deep-fryer or large saucepan to 375 degrees F (190 degrees C).
- Fry the pies, a few at a time, 2 to 3 minutes on each side; cook until the crust is golden brown. Drain on paper towels.
Footnote: I would suggest piercing the pies with a fork before frying to help aid in cooking the whole way through and preventing steam from building up inside and creating large air bubbles. Making good pie crust is essential to having a good pie. Butter crusts usually have a stronger, flakier flavor and texture if that is what you prefer. Make sure you don’t overwork the crust or mix it too much or it will become tough and bland. Add the water a little bit at a time (about a tablespoon at a time), just until there is enough water to hold the dough together. Also make sure the water is ice cold to help keep the butter or shortening from softening up. Anyone who had difficulty getting the crust to cook the entire way through without becoming very dark and crisp on the outside should try rolling the dough thinner. An eighth of an inch is less than you might think. If you have made the dough well, it will roll out and hold together. However, keep in mind that the more time you roll out the dough, the tougher it will be once cooked.