Monday, February 11, 2013

Sassy Sweets: Cherry Cheesecake Heart Pies

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Every year for Valentine's Day, my mom makes my dad Linzer Tarts.  It wouldn't be Valentine's Day in our house without them.  they are Dad's absolute favorite but since they take so much time and energy, it's hard for Mom to get around to doing them.  She takes the excuse of Valentine's Day to make them for him.  Now, it's tradition.

I often wonder when John and I will start to have our own traditions.  Do you start something in hopes of a tradition?  Or do they evolve?  Do you look back and then say oh this is tradition because we've done it so often?  These are the things I spend my life thinking about.  Why?!  I'm not sure so we should really just move onto the pies.

The best part about these pies?  If you don't want to make your own crust, like I have, you can easily go buy some premade pie dough at the store.  The thought is what counts and if you pull these out of the oven on Valentine's Day, no one will care who made the dough!  Also, feel free to substitute the cherries for berries or any other fruit you desire!

Cherry Cheesecake Heart Pies (adapted from Cake Student)
Serves:  10 (10 pies)
Pie Dough* (adapted from here):
1 1/4 cups flour, plus extra for rolling
1 teaspoon sugar
1/2 cup (1 stick) unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch cubes
3 to 4 tablespoons ice water
*you can buy premade and skip to filling

Filling:
4 ounces cream cheese
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup cherries, finely chopped

Pie Dough:  In a large food processor, combine flour and sugar.  Add the butter cubes and pulse until the butter is pea-sized.  Slowly drizzle in the ice water, one tablespoons at a time, pulsing well in between.  The mixture will start to clump together.  To test, gather some of the crumbly dough in your hand and squeeze.  If it comes together, and stays together, it is ready.  I poured it out into a big bowl and lightly kneaded / shaped it into one cohesive disk.  Then, wrap it in plastic wrap and refrigerate for at least 1 hour, up to overnight.

Filling:  To make the filling, beat together cream cheese and sugar until fluffy.  Set aside.

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees F.  Roll out the dough and using a cookie cutter, cut 20 hearts out of the dough (you may have to reroll scraps in order to get a full 20).  Place 10 on cookie sheets lined with tin foil.  Spread 2 tablespoons of cream cheese filling on each of those hearts, leaving a 1/2 inch border around the edges.  Mound with 1 tablespoon of cherries.  Place another heart over this one and using a fork, crimp the edges to seal shut.  Prick the top dough to allow air to escape.  Bake 15 minutes, until hearts are fully cooked and lightly browned.  Store in an airtight container in the fridge until serving (up to 1 week).
 Until the next time my oven is on...

8 comments:

  1. I love hearing about the traditions of others. Our Valentine's tradition around here is just something homemade, chocolate, and if at all possible heart shaped. Like your mom, sometimes I just need an excuse to drag out the sugar and butter. These look perfect.

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    Replies
    1. Karen, I agree! I love hearing about what other families do. I'm still looking for a good tradition for us!

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  2. These are so cute! I need to start a tradition on Valentine's day. Anything sweet sounds good to me.

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    Replies
    1. Sweets sound good to me, too! Unfortunately, John isn't much of a sweets guy. Oh well...more for me!

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  3. These are adorable! And they look like so much fun to make. What a great idea!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thanks Kristin :) Hope you enjoy your Valentine's Day!

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  4. These are so cute! This is starting a tradition! If you make them next year - even with a different filling then it's tradition for you to make heart hand pies for Valentines.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Reeni - I LOVE your thinking! I think you're right, I can definitely make this a tradition! I might even get better at the pie dough next time ;)

      Delete

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Welcome! I'm Dani (aka the Growing Foodie), just a girl balancing her career and passion for all things edible in NYC. I hope you'll join me in my adventures in life, through food. (Click for More)
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