PiePops/Pocket Pies: Suck It, Bakerella

So everyone at this point has heard of cakepops right? They’re super cool, and really fun, but there is a dramatic downside,…they’re freakin’ disgusting. The proportion of sugar/frosting/mess to cake is about 95:5.  So if you love candy coating or a mouf full of wax, cakepops are for you. Cakepops have been made famous by Bakerella http://www.bakerella.com/ . Brilliant and creative lady…and fantastic execution, I’ll save my bites for desserts that actually taste good.

After attempting cakepops this year and then throwing them to the wayside because they blow, a friend linked me to a website of PiePops. Are you kidding me? YES PLEASE. I’m pie sensitive. Picky about flavors, and have to have the right filling to crust ratio.  Well needless to say, I tried these suckers this week. Easy, fun, and really hard to screw up. My only concern going into this kitchen episode, was the reviews on these little piedevils. They’re fun to make and look at (like cakepops), but apparently don’t hit the ‘favorites list’ to people who don’t like pie crust. But hey… anything is worth a try right?

For a small batch, 1 1/4 flour, 1 stick of unsalted cold butter, 4+ tbsp cold water. Cut together butter and flour, then add the water to help form it’s shape. Once combined form into a flattened thick disk, wrap in plastic, then toss it into the fridge for 20 min to 24 hours.

*NOTE: this is taking forever to write just so you know, I have a cat the size of baby hippo napping, snoring, and laying half on the keyboard Why don’t I move her…because I’m a sucker.*

If you don’t make your own filling (there will have to be another post dedicated to this topic) and use the cans, get a small can if they have any available. You dont’ use much. Once the dough has set…roll it out and cut out shapes of your choice.  You need to leave a significant amount of space along the edges so that you can seal it…or you’ll have spillage everywhere. I’d just use my pics or http://www.bakerella.com/easy-as-pie/ as a guide.  I did lots ….and lots of testing with these suckers. To save you time (your welcome) I found that taking the sticks and doting them is the ‘prettiest’ but it leaks more than using a fork.  Using a fork and making traditional pie marks worked best for me with minimal spoo-age.

I put parchment paper down first ….I think your “whatever you’re cooking” works better, because the color of the pan has less effect. I have several pans and depending on how dark it is…they have all have very different cook times. If I don’t use paper I often forget and burn a portion batch of whatever I’m making.

ORDER! Roll out pie crust, cut your shapes, place on parchment paper (on baking sheet), lay a stick in the middle of the bottom circle, filling, top circle, pinch edges, gloss both sides, bake!!tic cooking times that work….and I always forget which means there is always a portion that gets burned. *I heart ParchmentPaper*. Some recipes say 375, some say 400, and some say 425 also with various cook times of 15-20 minutes.  I think after a few rounds the best for my oven was 400 for about 18-20 minutes. d doing a tradition press along the edges. I actually think when you do the traditional fork marks, I think it’s easier to tell that they’re pies.

There are two main ways to gloss them to get a more browned pie look: some say egg whites or butter. I think butter turned golden brown better…and also if you sprinkle sugar on them…definitely adds another fun aspect and really rounds out the flavor profile.

So Round 1…success. BUT the big downfall was the reviews were definitely correct. It tasted like a mouthful of piecrust and a just a tinge of filling. It definitely wasn’t my style…and it didn’t seem as much like a pie  because you could hardly taste the filling.

ROUND 2: WINNING!! My goal day 2 was to fix the ratio of crust to filling. I didn’t use the sticks the second time around just because I didn’t want to waste them for a taste test. I’ll put the stick on when I sell them or bring them for events. But….the pocket pies are also fun to just pop in your mouth as well. Here is how to make these BETTER than Bakerella: her problem was  how she filled them. If you’re using the canned filling, as hard as it is… you need to ditch all the goo. All of it…get rid of it. Sorry…needs to happen. (stop glaring at me…just throw it away, think of it as cutting calories).
Bottomline- you gotta try these. So fun, so easy, and absolutely delicious. Want even better news…. each pop has less than 50 calories. Also, how much easier are these to take with you than a whole pie!!? Another keeper recipe for my stash. The way to make these work (for the cherry pie version) is to only use the cherries. Funny because a few of the ladies that have piepop websites recommend not to use the whole cherries or fruit because they don’t fit. Wrong. For my circles (the flowers didn’t seal as well…I’ll stick to circles or get a bigger flower cutout) I used one or two whole cherries…or if you get freaked out cut them in half. But remember….ditch the goo, that’s the stuff that spills out the sides, and the cherries are what makes the pie anyways!

Tip: I added cinnamon, cloves, and a sprinkle of sugar to the cherries.

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