I was invited to a pie-themed potluck party recently. When trying to decide what I wanted to contribute, I kept a few things in mind: 1) The hostess is a vegetarian; 2) Something savory would lessen the chances of us ending up with several pumpkin pies; and 3) Cute food is almost always good.
Enter: the hand pie.
- cooking spray
- 1 butternut squash, peeled and cubed
- 3 tbs olive oil, divided
- spices of your choice (I used salt, pepper, cumin, garlic powder, and chili powder)
- 2-4 cloves garlic, minced
- 1 bunch kale, de-stemmed and sliced into ribbons
- 1/2 cup water or broth of choice
- salt and pepper, to taste
- 1/2 cup feta cheese
- pie crust dough of your choosing (I cheated and used store-bought!)
- 2 eggs, beaten
- kosher salt for sprinkling
Preheat the oven to 400 degrees F. Line two baking sheets with foil and spray the foil with cooking spray. Set aside.
Put the peeled and cubed butternut squash in a large zip top bag. Add 2 tbs olive oil and spices. Zip the bag shut and toss the contents around until all of the squash pieces are evenly coated. Divide the squash onto the two prepared baking sheets, spreading it into an even layer. Bake for 15 minutes, toss everything around, and bake for an additional 15 minutes, or until the squash is tender and cooked through.
In a large skillet, add the remaining 1 tbs olive oil and heat over medium heat. Add the minced garlic and cook until just fragrant. Add the kale and stir to coat the greens with the garlicky oil. Cook uncovered for a few minutes, stirring occasionally. Add the water/broth and cover the skillet. Cook for 5 minutes, or until the kale has begun to wilt down. Turn off the heat and remove the lid. Add salt and pepper to taste.
Once the butternut squash is cooked, add it to the pan of kale, along with the feta cheese. Stir everything together. Take a taste, and adjust your seasonings accordingly.
Remove the foil from the baking sheets, and line the sheets (or different baking sheets) with parchment paper.
Using whatever pie dough you choose, use a cookie cutter or water glass to cut circles of dough (2 per hand pie). I used a circle that was about 3.5 inches in diameter. Place circles of dough for the bottom half of the hand pies onto the baking sheets. I was able to fit 6 per baking sheet. Place 2-3 tbs of the squash/kale/feta filling on the middle of each circle of dough. You want to have a decent amount of filling in each hand pie, but also want to make sure that you’ll be able to seal everything closed without filling spilling out. Top each with another circle of dough to make the top of the hand pie.
Use the tines of a fork to crimp the edges of the dough (see the picture below). This will help to seal the pies shut.
Brush the tops of the hand pies with the beaten egg. This will help to ensure that the hand pies get brown and crispy. Sprinkle each hand pie with kosher salt. Cut a small slit or two into the top of each pie to allow steam to escape.
Bake your pies according to the directions for whatever pie dough you’ve used. I baked mine at 400 for 20ish minutes to get them to be golden-brown.