What is it about those convenient little packages of sweets most of us love so much? I'm sure it isn't the 1,000+ ingredients on the label, nor the fact that they are so loaded with preservatives they won't rot for years!
No, I think it's because convenience food is often sweet or salty (tastes most of us crave daily).....and, because convenience food is....well....convenient! Grab 'n go is a motto many live by when it comes to eating food.
Even as a stay-at-home mom, I find myself munching food down quickly between helping my littlest eat, and running to and fro in the kitchen. Last night, half of us didn't take the time to sit in chairs to eat. We talked with each other as we quickly gobbled our dinners, and off we went. (Thankfully, this is the exception, rather than the norm....but some weeks are worse than others.)
How about we give sweet AND convenient a try here...without the 1,000+ ingredient label? Something you could stick in the freezer, and pull out whenever you are craving one of those sweet treats? And, if your hubby likes hostess apple pies, like mine does, then you are in for a treat.
Homemade 'Hostess' Apple Pies
For the crust:
*2 1/2 cups flour ( any type of flour..sprouted flour is best.)
* 1/4 cup sucanat
*1/2 tsp. celtic sea salt, fine grind
*1 cup soft, but still cool, butter
*4 oz. organic or homemade cream cheese
In a bowl, whisk together flour, sweetener and salt. In mixer, beat butter and cream cheese together well, scraping sides of bowl once or twice. Add flour mixture to butter/cheese mixture in mixer bowl. Combine at medium low until crumbly, like coarse cornmeal. Scrape down bowl amd mix at medium high about 30 seconds. Roll into a ball and if not using directly, regrigerate until ready to use.
Apple pie filling:
* 2 apples, diced
*1 Tbsp. butter
*1 tsp. lemon juice
* 1/2 cup sucanat
* 1/2 tsp. vanilla
* 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
* 3 Tbsp. tapioca flour (as a thickener)
In saucepan, melt butter over medium-high heat. Add apples, and cook until soft, 6-10 minutes. Add the rest of the filling ingredients, and keep stirring over medium-high heat until thickened (4-5 minutes.) Remove from heat and allow to cool.
After preparing the dough, if you think it will be a while before you will work with it (longer than 20 minutes), then wrap with saran wrap, and refrigerate until ready. (If it has been in the refrigerator a while, then let it warm up to room temp. again before you use it, or it will be stiff and hard to work with.)
When you have prepared the filling, grab a portion of dough and roll out onto a floured surface with a floured rolling pin (to about 1/4" in thickness). I used a cereal bowl as a "cookie cutter", to get the right size circle I wanted for my pies.
After cutting out the circle, I placed about a Tablespoon or two of filling in the middle. I then folded the circle in half towards me (looking like a taco), and pressed the sides gentle onto one another. I used a fork just for looks. No need to if you don't want to, but it only takes a moment.
Be aware, if you use too much filling, it will cause splitting of the sides.
Place on a baking sheet. 400 degree oven....12-15 minutes, or until the edges start to brown.
* 2 cups powdered sucanat (just place in coffee grinder to powder!)
*2-4 Tbsp. heavy whipping cream
*1 tsp. vanilla
Mix ingredients together, and use a pastry brush to glaze the pies.
(* Using powdered sucanat in the glaze, will cause it to be very dark...although tasty! You might want to use a store bought organic powdered sugar, if you are making these for guests or to give.)
And, Nina...thank you for your constant inspiration!
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