May I introduce you to my friend Kay, who I have known since Junior High School! Facts about Kay:
She was the only one of “our group” who had wheels in High School…a red Rambler station wagon. Yes we were too cool for words!
We were bridesmaids for each other’s wedding.
I think I may have spent as much time at her house as I did mine.
Her mom was a great cook and so is she and I hear her daughter isn’t too bad herself!
She spent half of her life (I’m guessing here) trying to straighten her curly hair. I spent half my life (not guessing at all on this one) trying to curl my straight hair. Go figure.
We were Candystripers together!
Kay’s mother, Betty, hosted a Bridal Luncheon for each of us six girls the day of our weddings! We always had her specialty…Chicken Spaghetti, Almond Green Beans, biscuits.
Kay called me this past week and she mentioned her fried pies. In short order, I had her signed up to do a guest post. You will love these. I spent this afternoon making fried pies, so the photos are mine. The recipe is her’s!! Enjoy!!
My Aunt Alice Morris, who will be 93 in October, always took these pies to Uncle Ernest’s store at Christmas for his special customers. I took some to my husband’s family reunion and overheard my brother-in-law say ” I wonder which little old lady made these?” I was all of 35 at the time! I have been making them to make money for my Church for 20+years. About 8 years ago one of my husband’s employees cut down one of our only 2 apricot trees by mistake and the only lawyer in town, who sang in Church choir with me, threatened to sue for loss of future income for the church. For the next couple of years lots of people in town brought fresh apricots and left them on our back porch.
Every fall we have a Lord’s Acre celebration with a bake sale, crafts, sale, and lots of food so the apricot fried pies are pretty well-known. I usually make 200 or more pies and we charge $2 each. I’ve had men from town waiting for me on the street corners on the way to church to be sure they get their share. I always have plenty of help unloading my jeep on that morning! Our 2012 Lord’s Acre is 2 weeks away and I have orders for 8 dozen so far. My daughter, who is a great cook, knows how to make the pies so she will be able to carry on the family tradition!
Apricot Fried Pies
Note: don’t let the length of this scare you! I tried to include hints that I’ve learned thru the years. It takes about 1-1 1/2 hour to have these ready, especially if you don’t have to cook your filling. I usually do that the night before so it’s cooled for the frying part of the recipe. Then I make all of the pies and then fry them. Don’t hesitate to ask questions! These make great after-school snacks!
Filling: Use apricot, peach or apple jam or preserves…whatever your favorite is! This is the easiest and fastest route! OR…
Soak 4 cups of dried apricots 8 hours in water then cook with 1 cup sugar and dash of cinnamon till thick and mushy. OR…
Cook 4 cups of fresh or frozen apricots slowly with 1-2 cups sugar and cinnamon until thick. You may need to take some of the liquid and thicken with flour or corn starch. OR…
Buy a can of whatever fruit pie filling you like. Be sure to chop the fruit up finely so it will fit into the pie easily. I have also used fresh apples chopped up finely, tossed them in sugar and cinnamon and stuffed them into the dough. They made great fried pies and the apples are bit crunchier, depending on the variety of apple.
There’s a million ways to do fried pies. The Fine Art of Fried Pie Creation is very flexible and takes experimentation and practice, so don’t lose heart. If I can, you can. Simple as that!
5 cups Flour
1/2 tsp Baking Powder
1 tsp Salt
1 Tablespoon Sugar
1 cup Crisco (I used Butter Flavor Crisco)
1 cup Milk
Mix dry ingredients together with pastry blender, adding milk last, blending with fork.
Roll out thin on a floured surface (about 1/16″ thick and when Kay says the dough is tough…it’s tough. You’ll get a good workout! I’m thinking that the next time I do this, I’ll sweetly entice BB into being the dough roller-outer! 🙂 ) and cut into 4″ circles. (I used a 4 1/2″ empty plastic carton that fondant came in…it worked great! Or you can use a large plastic lid or a coffee can.)
Brush edges of circle of dough with water and place fruit filling on one side.
Fold over and crimp. (Squeeze the edges TIGHT…it’s important cause if you don’t, the filling will ooze out and that makes your oil pop! So squeeze and then squeeze again!) Place in med-high oil and fry in 1″ of corn oil in a 10″ or 12″ skillet. (I used my Old Faithful Farberware electric skillet set on 450°. )
Fry 4-6 pies at a time cooking the first side for about 2 minutes. Turn carefully with tongs and fry the second side for about 1 minute.
Remove from hot oil and place on to a platter lined with paper towels. Let cool. Makes about 20-24 pies. Some folks like to drizzle icing over the pies or dip the pies in the icing and some like to sprinkle powered sugar over them. We like our’s plain.