Yes. It’s true. I made mini “Happy Thanksgiving” pies and it’s a good week-and-a-half before the actual holiday. Either I’m already abusing my newfound blogger powers, or I’m just a crazy person.
Don’t dwell on that too long. Instead, direct your attention at the super cute message pies in question. They’re one of those seemingly over-the-top, ultra-impressive desserts that are actually semi-homemade (and in all honesty, that “homemade” part is a little too flattering for what happened in my kitchen tonight. I’m looking at you, frozen pie crusts from Trader Joe’s).
You can dress them down by nixing the leaf garnishes, you can dress them up with some from-scratch pate brisee and faux lattice work, or you can simply leave them as is. Honestly, the possibilities are endless once you’ve you’ve got the basic “mini pie” shtick down to a science.
The one thing I wouldn’t change, of course, is the lettering. It’s just fun and different for a pie. We’re used to seeing cakes topped with piped calligraphy, but when’s the last time a pie told you plainly how it feels? Let it be known that all baked goods can be lettered if you get creative about it. Pies included. I used these Sweetshop Alphabet Cutters, but you can probably find mini letter cutters in any baking supply depot or your local craft store.
Admittedly, those Trader Joe’s frozen pie crusts were a godsend tonight, but if you’ve got a bit more energy than I did and can spend some time with real, honest-to-goodness dough ingredients, DO IT! Duh.
Mini Blueberry Message Pies
Makes 8-10 miniature pies
What you need:
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 1 large egg
- 1 tablespoon heavy cream
- 2 9-inch pie crusts, store-bought or homemade
- Letter cutters and decorative shape cutters of your choice
- 6 oz. blueberries
- 2 teaspoons cornstarch
- 2 1/2 tablespoons granulated sugar
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
What you’ll do:
- Spray baking sheet, set aside. Whisk egg and heavy cream together, set aside. Preheat oven to 350° F.
- Roll out your pie crusts onto a well-floured surface. Using a circular drinking glass or cutter, cut an even number of circles out of the dough, with 3-4 inch diameters. Set aside carefully.
- Roll out the second crust. Use your letter cutters to create the letters you’ll need for your message of choice, and add any desired decorative shapes.
- Make the filling: In a medium bowl, stir blueberries, 2 tablespoons of sugar, cornstarch, and lemon juice until combined.
- Spoon a scant tablespoon (about 4-5 berries) of filling onto the middle of half of the circular crusts. Brush the crust perimeter outside of the filling with egg wash using a pastry or basting brush, then top with remaining crusts.
- Flute the edges to secure with the prongs of a fork.
- Brush each letter with egg wash, then apply to the top of each mini pie until you’ve “written out” your message. Apply any decorative shapes the same way. Brush entire crust with egg wash and sprinkle with remaining sugar. Using a knife, create several slit vents in the top of the crust surrounding your message.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until golden brown. Let cool almost completely before serving.