Saskatoon & Chocolate Mini Pies

Being a daily follower of Tastespotting, I have always wanted to post something on that community.
Seeing as this is my first post related to cooking instead of eating, I guess I’ll do a brief introduction.

It began in elementary school with the failed heart-shaped valentines cookies. I made it my mission to avoid failure then on and I have been baking since.

A few days ago, I decided to make mini Saskatoon berry pies for my friends birthday. It was my second attempt to making a full on pie from scratch but still as rewarding as the first.

Mission: Successfully improvise in making baking mini berry pies
Challenges: Approximating the estimate baking time
Verdict: Success with the minor point deduction for visual presentation.

Saskatoon Berry and Chocolate Mini Pies

Preheat oven at 375
Cut up a 2-ounce block of unsweetened chocolate
Sprinkle it on the pie crust (on the bottom of course)
Add Saskatoon berry filling
Place all of your pies on a baking tray for easier transport
Bake pies for 35-40 minutes until golden brown
Voila!

Pie Crust (adapted from Caprial+John’s The Kitchen)

-Makes enough for a single-crust pie or in this case:
7 pot pie pans (4 3/8in x 1 3/16 in)-

Ingredients:
1 1/3 cups flour
1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, diced
1/2 cup shortening (I used lard, which makes it a lot flakier of course)
1/2 teaspoon salt
6 tablespoons water
1 egg (for egg wash)

Directions:
Place flour, butter, shortening and salt in a large bowl.
Use a pastry cutter (or a fork) to blend mixture until it resembles a coarse meal
Add water and mix with hands until dough comes together (Don’t be afraid to get dirty, that’s what I’ve learned over the years)
Turn the dough onto a well-floured (IMPORTANT otherwise dough will stick to everything) and form it into a disk with hands
Let it rest for 15-30 mins before rolling
Roll dough out to desired thickness (usually I would go 1 cm or a little more)
Use your mini pie pans as a “cookie cutter”
Leave 1.5 inches from the edges of pan and cut
Carefully place the dough into the pan, press it to the sides and form your desired design for the edges.
Using a fork, poke holes on the bottom and brush on egg/egg wash
Repeat
[note: you should have a small remainder of dough left after 7 pies so go ahead and make a weave or hearts or whatever you feel as decoration but remember to egg wash those as well]

Saskatoon Berry Pie Filling

(Makes 2.5 cups)
1.5 cans of 540ml Saskatoon berry pie filling (from Superstore)
1 medium sized lemon
3 teaspoons sifted cornstarch (No sift=clumps=terrible)
3 tablespoons cinnamon

Empty can of berries into bowl
Squeeze half of a lemon into berry mixture while stirring
Slowly add cornstarch while stirring
Add cinnamon
Add other half of lemon
(If it’s too thick, add a little bit of water)

I personally didn’t have enough berry filling because I only bought one can so I improvised and ended up cutting up an apple, tossing it in brown sugar, lemon, and cinnamon for 3 of the pies.

The lemon gives more of a tartness and the little bit of chocolate on the bottom adds the small surprise rather than just a berry pie.

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