Saturday, September 22, 2012

GO BLUEberry Pie Cookies

Once again, it's my favorite time of the year. The air is getting cooler, apples and pumpkin are in season, my sweaters and boots can escape the depths of my closet and return to prime locations within easy reach, and football season is well underway!

Last year, I made a point to celebrate my alma mater every Saturday they played. I'm sure it hasn't gone unnoticed, but I've been blogging far less frequently as of late. This is not to say I have forgotten my Wolverines or have not been following the games. On the contrary — this year, I've discovered a pair of Michigan bars in the Boston area, both heavy with fans on game day. I watched my boys lose to Alabama and regain confidence and merit in their games against the Army and U Mass. Tonight, we play Notre Dame — remember how incredible that game was last year (when I made Maize and Blue swirled cupcakes to celebrate)? I'm looking forward to a similar battle!

As we move into full blown Fall, I will be baking up plenty of apple and pumpkin treats —two of my favorite flavors. To give Summer its proper send off and celebrate the Michigan Wolverines, I made a treat with fresh berries — Blueberry Pie Cookies!

These Blueberry Pie Cookies represent a perfect blend of traditional pie and bite-sized (or three-bite-sized) cookies. They are easily transportable, not too sweet and would make a fantastic tailgate addition.

Blueberry Pie Cookies (adapted from Building Buttercream):
Makes about 25-30 3 or 4 inch pie cookies

Ingredients for Pie Crust:
  • 2 1/2 cups flour (I used 1 cup whole wheat and 1 1/2 cups all-purpose)
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 2 1/2 sticks (1 cup) cold unsalted butter
  • about 1/2 cup ice water
Ingredients for Filling:
  • 2 cups blueberries
  • 1/4 cup sugar 
  • juice and zest from 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon melted butter
  • 1 tablespoon cornstarch

  • Mix the flour, sugar, and salt together with a fork
  • Cut butter into cubes and "cut" it into the flour mixture with a pastry cutter (or fork) until there are no butter bits that are bigger than a pea (smaller than this will affect the flakiness of the finished pie crust
  • Add the ice water, a tablespoon or two at a time and use a fork to wet the batter until the dough starts to hold its shape 
  • Divide the dough in two, cover each half with plastic wrap, and refrigerate for at least an hour
  • Toss the blueberries, sugar, lemon juice and zest, melted butter, and cornstarch in a medium bowl and set aside.
  • Preheat your oven to 350 and line the bottom of a cookie sheet with parchment paper
  • Remove one of the covered dough halves from the refrigerator, divide this in half and roll out on a well-floured surface
  • Using a 3-4 inch round cookie cutter (For lack of a legitimate round cookie cutter, I used the lids of my cornstarch and baking powder containers — I think the baking powder lid yielded the better pie cookies), cut 12-16 circles out of the pie dough — this will use all of the dough and require rolling out 2-3 times 
  • Place half of these on the parchment paper, evenly spaced
  • Spoon a small amount (5-6 blueberries and a little sauce) into the center or each pie circle
  • Place another circle of dough on top of the blueberry-topped bottom circles and press down the edges with a fork 
  • Cut some small slits in the top (or stab with a fork) and bake for 10-12 minutes, or until the filling is bubbly
  • Cool on a wire rack and repeat in three more batches with the rest of the pie crust and filling

Another bonus — I had leftover blueberry filling when I was done making these pie cookies, so I mixed it in with the leftover chocolate chip cookie dough from my roommate's baking spree. The result? Awesome Blueberry Chocolate Chip Cookies! I imagine this will work with just about any chocolate chip recipe, but be aware that after a day the blueberries will make the cookies softer and more prone to falling apart in your hands... so don't bother saving them - just chow down!

Happy Baking and LETS GO BLUE!

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