I’m one of those people that is amazed by infomercial products and love kitchen and crafting gadgets. I usually resist, and wait to snag it at a garage sale, or try to make my own hoopty version, DIY style at home. We were browsing at Williams Sonoma a few weekends ago and I saw these super cute pocket pie molds and wanted them instantly. They were selling for like $10, but I convinced myself that I didn’t need this uni-tasker and that $10 was a rip-off for something that I could finagle somehow for free. They are pretty nifty though, one side cuts the shapes out and then when you press it together, it sandwiches the cut-outs shut. They come in a few shapes: apple, star, heart, pumpkin and lattice. But really, can’t I do this with cookie cutters and a fork?
Well, my cookie cutters are all too small for a pocket / hand pie, so I decided to DIY this project completely from the start. I found a few tutorials on how to make your own cookie cutters from a soda can or aluminum baking pans. Here is my version:
Materials: printout of the image that you want to make, scissors, aluminum baking pan (not shown), ruler, stapler, marker or other things to help you shape the angles, something to protect the table you’re working on (like this green mat that I have) and gardening gloves (not shown) for safety, as the aluminum is sharp after you cut it.
Step 5: after you get all the way around, slip one end of the strip into the folded edges of the other end (make sure that they are lined up on 1 side of the cutter, so that the cutting edge is clean) and staple to secure. TADA!! Don’t worry if it’s not perfect as cookie / pie dough will expand when you bake them.
The cutters work great, even though they are a bit flimsy. You just have to make sure to evenly press it down gently into the dough when cutting out shapes (try not to distort the image, or reshape it if it gets wonky).
My hand pies could use some work though. I used Martha Stewart’s Pie Dough recipe found here, and a blueberry peach filling from the Food Network here. Since my cutter doesn’t have the shape of Hello Kitty’s bow, I tried to gently make an outline with the edge of a paring knife. Then I used a pen cap to cut out her eyes and nose. I sealed the top and bottom pieces with the edge of a fork. It’s a bit messy as I have little patience and am clumsy and broke some pieces when I was picking them up.
I’m also greedy and over-filled the pies, so after baking, Hello Kitty is bleeding out of her nose and eyes (pretty sadistic looking, I must say). Only 1 turned out ok, and didn’t look like Hello Kitty was a member of Fight Club. Pretty tasty though and a great way to use up those summer fruits from the farmers market.