Each morning I take the train to the other end of town to study French. With a copy of Best Food Writing 2010, some roasted nuts and orangefoodie for company, it’s a fun ride. There are some days when breakfast on the train is an event we look forward to with homemade Snickers or rich chocolate brownies. However, that’s a tad messy to eat on the train, and then there is the task of opening this large blue square box in the middle of the train compartment without eliciting unnecessary gazes.
One day I felt like eating apple pies. Juicy, cinnamon-y, flaky crusted apple pies. There was little chance of me eating a regular apple pie on the train without having a piece of golden caramelised apple on my jeans, or worse still, on my co-passenger’s shiny leather shoes. And I still really, really wanted to eat an apple pie for breakfast. That’s when I thought I’d make these apple pie pockets. Caramelised apples encased in flaky pastry dough and baked to a perfect golden glow. So convenient to eat, much like pop tarts.
Pie pocket pointers:
- Roll out the dough thinner than you think you should. A rule I follow: I should be able to see the colour of my electric blue rolling board through the dough. This is because the pastry dough will get thicker on baking. Not just that, with pie pockets, you have double crusts – and you certainly don’t want to just taste the crust with a diminutive piece of apple peaking through.
- Poke the top with a fork to let the steam escape.
- Brush the pie pocket with egg wash right before baking for the gorgeous golden sheen.
- If you’d like, spoon some applesauce along with caramelised apples in the pockets to heighten the apple flavour. I did this for the second batch of apple pie pockets I made, and it took it to a whole new level. I highly recommend it.
The caramelised apples really have no recipe – I just made it up as I went along. A tablespoon of butter, 3-4 tablespoons of sugar and chopped apples thrown in and cooked till soft, yet firm to the bite, finished off with a little cinnamon. Set this aside to cool while you get ready to roll out the dough. In case you still need a little more hand-holding, here is a detailed recipe for caramelised apples.
For the dough I used my favourite flaky pastry dough recipe. Roll out the dough and using a round or rectangular cookie cutter, cut out pieces of dough. Place the cooled caramelised apple filling on the dough, making sure to leave enough space around the edges. Place a pie of cut out dough on top of the apples, and seal the edges by pressing down gently with your fingers. Make incisions with a knife or a fork, followed by an egg wash and then finally bake it in an oven at 175°C/350°F until golden brown and fragrant. Baking time will vary depending on the size of your pie pocket, but keep an eye on it post 7-8 minutes