Pi Day is a day to celebrate mathematics, or more specifically, the ratio of a circle’s circumference to it’s diameter. While I do appreciate math for it’s precision, I also feel a bit peeved at math for making my brain hurt! Ok, I’m sorry math. I forgive you. I do need you! How would I bake without you? So today I will celebrate math (and also my love for puns) with these tender, fudgy mini hand pies!
Since pi is all about circles, I used a 2 3/4-inch circle cutter to make round pies, but you can cut them into any shape you like. You could cut larger circles, fold them in half and call them empanadas. Rectangles are very popular with Pop Tart fans and you don’t need a special cutter, but a ruler would be helpful. I think squares would be cute, too! Whatever your shape of choice, my buddy math can hook you up!
I used a stencil to add some powdered sugar polka dots to my mini pies. I may have gone a little overboard with my circles, but who’s going to stop me? I think they look pretty cute, but If you don’t have a stencil, a sprinkle or two of powdered sugar will do just fine! Alternately, you could drizzle them with some melted white chocolate. I had a bit of white chocolate on hand, so I can confidently say, that version is yummy too!
|Prep Time||45 minutes|
|Cook Time||25 minutes|
|Passive Time||1 1/2 hours|
- 1 1/8 cup (5 ounces) all purpose flour plus more for work surface
- 3 tablespoons unsweetened cocoa powder
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/8 teaspoon fine sea salt
- 1/8 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 stick (4 ounces) cold, unsalted butter, cubed
- 3 ounces cold cream cheese, cubed
- 3 tablespoons cold water, divided
- 1 small egg
- 1/2 cup (3 ounces) bittersweet or semi-sweet chocolate chips *see notes
- 1/3 cup (3.5 ounces) sweetened condensed milk
- 2 tablespoons powdered sugar optional
- OR 2 tablespoons melted white chocolate optional
- In a large bowl, sift together flour, cocoa powder, sugar, salt and baking powder.
- Add butter and cream cheese to the flour mixture. Use a pastry cutter or your fingers to cut butter and cream cheese into the flour mixture until it resembles pea-sized crumbs.
- Add 2 tablespoons of the cold water to the mixture. Stir gently just until the mixture begins to hold together.
- Turn mixture out onto work surface. Press mixture together and fold over onto itself.
- Form dough into a disk. Wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 1 hour.
- In a small microwavable bowl, melt chocolate chips and sweetened condensed milk in the microwave. Heat for 10 second intervals, stirring until smooth.
- Set aside to cool to room temperature.
- Preheat oven to 375ºF. Line a large baking sheet with parchment paper.
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg and remaining 1 tablespoon water.
- On lightly floured surface, roll dough to 1/8-inch thickness.
- Cut out 20 circles with a 2 3/4-inch circle cutter (or cut into desired shapes of your choice).
- Place 10 dough circles about 1 inch apart onto prepared baking sheet. Top each with 1 tablespoon of filling.
- With a small pastry brush or your finger, brush egg mixture around the perimeter of each of the filled dough circles.
- Top each with the 10 remaining dough circles. Crimp edges together with a fork. Brush pies with remaining egg mixture.
- Bake for 25 minutes or until crust is crispy and browned.
- Transfer to wire racks to cool. Sprinkle cooled pies with powdered sugar or drizzle with melted white chocolate.
*The chocolate chips you use depends on personal preference. Bittersweet chocolate chips give a more intense chocolate flavor, while semi-sweet chocolate chips yield a slightly sweeter finished product.
To find my favorite circle cutters click here. To find the polka-dot stencil click here.