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The November challenge for What’s Baking? was to make a dish that reminded us of Thanksgiving. At first all I could think of was pumpkin. I’ve made several pumpkin dishes in the past two months, but wasn’t sure if I wanted to use one as part of this challenge. I began thinking of other foods that reminded me of Thanksgiving and finally came up with cranberries.
I don’t really like cranberries by themselves so I tried thinking of a complimentary fruit and immediately thought of apples. I wanted to make some sort of pie or tart. After sleeping on it I came up with the idea of making mini pies. My thought was that after a huge Thanksgiving dinner everyone always wants a little dessert but ends up eating way to much. With mini pies, the portions are already controlled. They are big enough to satisfy a sweet tooth, but not too much.
I didn’t have any mini pans so I wanted to try making them in my muffin tin. I wasn’t sure how it would work out, so I just went with it. I made the pie crust, baked it, and then pulled it out of the oven. I filled it with the cranberries and apples and put it back in to bake.
It had an amazingly sweet and spicy scent when it came out of the oven. The pies easily popped out of the muffin tins and held their shape. They were sweet and tart, with a hint of cinnamon. They were fantastic! This is probably the best dessert I’ve made this month. I will be making this for our Thanksgiving dinner.
Cranberry Apple Mini Pies (Crust recipe adapted from All Recipes . The pie filling is my own creation.)
For the crust:
1 ½ c. flour
1/3 c. vegetable oil
¼ c. low fat milk
2 T. sugar
½ t. salt
½ t. cinnamon
For the filling:
¾ c. fresh cranberries
½ c. water
½ c. sugar
1 t. cinnamon
1 T. flour
2 apples, peeled, cored, and cut into ½ inch pieces (I used Gala)
Juice of ½ lemon
1. Preheat the oven to 400 degrees.
2. In a small bowl combine all the ingredients for the crust. Mix with a fork until combined. Roll out the dough to 1/8 inch thick. Cut out 3 inch circles (using a cookie cutter or a knife). Put each circle into one of the muffin cups in your muffin tin.
3. Push into the bottom and the sides of the muffin tin. Trim any extra dough hanging over the edge or top. Poke two holes in the bottom of each pie crust with a fork. Bake for 12 minutes.
4. Meanwhile, heat the cranberries, water, sugar, and cinnamon in a small pot of medium heat. Bring to a boil then reduce heat. Continue to cook for 10 minutes. Remove from heat and add the flour.
5. Cut the apples into ½ inch slices. Sprinkle with the lemon juice.
6. Pull the mini pie crusts out of the oven. Put 2 or 3 cranberries in the bottom of each then fill almost to the top with apple slices. Pour the remaining cranberries with juice over top of each of the filled crusts to the top.
7. Put back into the oven and cook for 15-20 minutes or until filling is bubbly. Cool for 5 minutes then remove the mini pies to a wire rack to cool completely.
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