A delicious dessert for the holidays by our dairy-aisle expert Chef Aida Mollenkamp.
- 11/2 cups frozen cranberries (about 6-oz.)
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar, plus 2 Tbsp. for garnish
- 1/2 cup pure maple syrup
- 1/2 cup apple juice
- 5 Tbsp. all-purpose flour, divided
- 3 Tbsp. cold unsalted butter, divided
- 1 tsp. kosher salt
- 3/4 tsp. ground cinnamon
- 11/2 lbs. granny smith apples, (about 4 medium),
- 1 cup pecans, finely chopped
- 2 Tbsp. freshly squeezed lemon juice
- 2 (16.5)-oz. containers Pillsbury Grands 8-count homestyle buttermilk biscuits
- 1/4 cup heavy cream or whole milk
- Whipped cream or Ice Cream, for serving
Heat oven to 350 degrees F and arrange two racks in the upper and lower third. Line two rimmed baking sheets with parchment paper and set aside.
Combine cranberries, 2/3 cup sugar, syrup, apple juice, 3 tablespoons flour, 1 tablespoon butter, salt, and cinnamon in a medium saucepan and stir to combine. Cook over medium heat until mixture comes to boil, about 5 minutes.
Meanwhile, peel, core, and cut apples into a small dice. Add diced apples to cranberries, stir and continue to cook until apples are just softened and cranberries begin to collapse, about 5 minutes. Remove from heat and stir in pecans, lemon juice and remaining 2 tablespoons of flour and set aside to cool slightly, at least 10 minutes. Meanwhile, prepare the biscuits.
Unwrap the biscuits and, holding it together in a log form (the same form it was in the package), slice each biscuit in half crosswise so that you get 16 discs from each container (32 discs total). Using a lightly floured rolling pin on a lightly floured cutting board, roll each disc to a circle with a 3½-inch diameter. (Keep unused dough in the refrigerator until ready to use.)
When filling is cool, cut remaining butter into 16 small pieces then arrange 16 of the rolled-out biscuit discs between two prepared baking sheets. Top each biscuit disc with 2½ heaping tablespoons of cranberry mixture and a dab of butter, being sure to leave a ½-inch border around the edge. Place the remaining discs on top of the cranberry mixture and press them together at the border. Using a small fork, crimp the edges of the two discs together to securely close each hand pie.
Use a pastry brush to brush the hand pies with cream then garnish the hand pies with the remaining sugar. Using sharp kitchen scissors, create an “X” shaped vent in the top of each hand pie by cutting 4 (1-inch) vents.
Place both baking sheets of pies in the oven and bake, swapping the baking sheets halfway through cooking time, until biscuits are risen and golden brown on the bottom and the fruit mixture starts bubbling through the vent, about 25 to 30 minutes. Remove pies to wire racks to cool briefly (at least 5 minutes) then serve with whipped cream or ice cream.