For a while I had been thinking about small food — as in “Look at me, I am a GIANT!” small food. My plans included little poussin, Brussels sprouts, little dinner rolls, and itty bitty pies. I have a small muffin pan with shallow, curved shapes (maybe for dinner rolls?) that I thought would be good for the shape (the standard 5″ small pie tin was considered but voted too large). I also tried some mini pies in regular muffin tins.
I used the standard refrigerated Pillsbury pie crusts, and cut out round shapes using a biscuit cutter and some cups from around the kitchen. I winged some apple and blueberry pie filling based on some basic recipes — I didn’t measure anything just threw in a little bit of sugar, a tiny bit of lemon zest, and a dash of cinnamon (when I decide to wing it things rarely work out, but this time they did!). I cut the apple into mini slices. I couldn’t find any sour cherries at the store (I don’t really know why I was so fixated on finding sour cherries) so I used a canned pie filling.
The pies were baked in a 375 degree oven for ten minutes and then checked. If the tops were getting very brown I covered them lightly with foil (like a crust shield but for the whole pie) and baked for 3 to 5 minutes more until bubbly. I was worried that the apple wouldn’t be cooked enough but it came out fine on both of my tests.
I suspect some sparkly sanding sugar thrown on top, or perhaps this water and sugar techinique would be great for these.
The tiny pies were surprisingly yummy, very easy, and provided a good crust-to-filling ratio. If you have a few people over everybody can choose their favorite types of pie. Also, if you leave out the ice cream they are a food you can eat while walking. I wonder if they would freeze well? I think they would be really great at a bake sale.
I am, of course, not the first person to make tiny pies. Digs Magazine has a recipe for Mini Pumpkin Pies, and you can find lots of mini pecan pies and mince pies if you google around a bit.
More tiny pies! Go see pictures of a tiny food hors d’oevures spread by Callahan Catering in the Summer 2003 Martha Stewart Weddings magazine, everything is enchanting. There are recipes for all of these hors d’oevures including the 2″ strawberry rhubarb lattice pies on the Martha Stewart web site here.
Sur La Table has 2″ straight sided tartlet forms that looks like really tiny pie tins.
The book Sweet Miniatures looks like it contains so many good ideas for tiny desserts.
There is a recipe for mini 2″ or 3″ jam tarts on the MS web site as well.
Another book – 125 Lucious Little Bites.
And the very cute gingerbread house poppers.