Cute Mini Plum Pies
A couple of months ago I came across a picture of a plum pie. I’ve no idea where I saw the picture nor did it have a recipe (probably the reason why I didn’t save it to my favourites). All I remember was that it looked delicious and that I wanted to make a plum pie myself! I remembered that in the Dutch Caribbean cuisine there also is a plum pie, so I asked my mom if she might have a recipe somewhere. She found a printed piece of paper that had a recipe on how to make the plum mixture which I decided to use as a base for my pie (of course slightly adjusted to my taste :)). I figured almonds and plums would make a nice combination so I decided to create a shortbread using part almond meal to accompany my plum mixture.
Instead of making one big pie I decided to create a bunch of mini pies. After even just one try, the pies tasted a-ma-zing! One of my grandmothers (yes, I’m lucky enough to still have two grannies!) liked the pies so much she wanted me to make some for her birthday!
I love being inspired by others and then create a recipe of my own, that’s one of the reasons I started Cakies! To document all my ideas or share other amazing recipes.
I know what you’re thinking… So how do you make these cute little pies? Well, here’s how you do it:
First grab all your essentials for making the shortbread: almond meal, all-purpose flower, sugar, butter, egg and lemon zest.
Add flour and almond meal to a bowl.
Cut butter into cubes.
Add butter to the flour and using two knives start cutting the flour into the butter.
Add sugar and using the tips of your fingers quickly rub in the sugar and butter into the flour until it starts to look a bit crumbly.
This is the crumbly look you’re aiming for.
If you’re like me and you’ve forgotten to add the lemon zest earlier…, this is the part where you can still add it to your dough. It’s easier to add it at the same time as the sugar though… I’ve made sure that in the printed recipe the order is correct so you (hopefully) won’t make the same mistake… Anyway, let’s move on to the next step…
In a separate bowl (as you can see I just reused the one that had my flour in, saves on the washing up) add a pinch of salt to the egg.
Lightly whisk the egg.
And add egg to the crumbly dough.
Quickly kneed the dough into a ball. Don’t overwork the mixture, it can still be a little crumbly. Put the dough in the fridge and leave to rest for at least half an hour.
While the dough is resting, let’s get started with the plum filling. For the filling you’ll need some cherry brandy, plums, water and the peel of a lemon.
In a saucepan, add plums, lemon peels, water,
Don’t forget the cherry brandy.
Put on a low heat and let it simmer very slowly. This can take about 20-30 minutes. Make sure to check every now and than to make sure the water hasn’t evaporated too quickly in which case you will need to add a little more water to make sure the mixture doesn’t dry out.
When the mixture has been simmering for a while you can see the plums breaking up more and more. Make sure the water hasn’t evaporated yet.
Now it’s time to mix cornflour/cornstarch with some water.
Make sure the cornflour/cornstarch is mixed thoroughly with the water.
Add cornflour/cornstarch mixture to the plums.
Leave to simmer for a couple more minutes and mix well to combine. Take the pan off the heat and leave to cool before use. The mixture should be nice and slushy by now. If the mixture doesn’t look slushy enough just add some more water and leave a bit longer to simmer.
Once you’re happy with your plum mixture, make sure you take out the lemon peels.
While the plum mixture is cooling it’s time to prepare your muffin tin. You don’t actually have to do this, but I can assure you, it makes the taking out of the tin much easier.
Cut some strips of parchment paper of 0.4inch by 1.6inch.
Place them in a cross in a lightly buttered muffin tin.
Do this for the entire muffin tin.
Now it’s time to flour your work surface ’cause we’re going to make the actual pies!
Divide your dough into two pieces of 1/3 and 2/3.
Roll out 2/3 of the dough about 0.16inch thick and cut out circles slightly bigger than the circles of your muffin tin. You can use a small bowl or a baking ring it doesn’t really matter as long as it’s roughly the size you nee.
Using a palette knife, lift off the circle from your work surface. Don’t panic if the shape starts to shift or if the circle starts to break a little, you can fix that in the muffin tin.
Place the dough in the muffin tin on top of the crossed strips of parchment paper. Make sure the top of the strips stick out on top. Press the dough into shape in the tin and fix any errors.
Add a little bit of custard to the bottom of each pie. This will help absorb any moisture from the plum mixture. This step is optional, you can also skip this step.
Add about a tablespoon of the plum mixture to the dough.
Repeat this till you’ve filled all of the pies.
Now roll out the rest of the dough till about 0.16inch thick and cut into strips. Place strips onto each of the pies. Brush the pies with a little bit of a lightly beaten egg and place into a preheated oven.
Bake the pies until golden brown.
Now here’s where the strips come in. Using the strips, take out the pies.
Leave to cool on a wire rack.
Once cooled, remove the strips and get ready to eat the pies. Aren’t they just the cutest little pies? And they taste delicious as well! I suggest you go out to get the ingredients and start baking!
|Prep Time||30 minutes|
|Cook Time||25 minutes|
- 230 g all-purpose flour
- 100 g almond meal
- 200 g butter cold
- pinch salt
- 125 g castor sugar (fine sugar)
- 1 tsp lemon zest
- 1 egg
- 250 g dried seedless plums soaked
- 2 rinds lemon
- 3 tbsp cherry brandy
- 125 ml water
- 1 tsp cornflour/cornstarch
- 1/2 tbsp water
- Sift flour and cut butter into small piece and add to the flour. Start cutting the butter into the flour using two knives.
- Add sugar and lemon rind and quickly rub the butter with the tips of your fingers into the flour until it starts to look a bit crumbly.
- Lightly beat the egg with some salt and add it to the crumbly mixture.
- Quickly kneed the dough into a ball. Don't overwork the mixture, it should still be a little crumbly.
- Rest the dough in the fridge for half an hour.
- In a saucepan, add plums, lemon peels, cherry brandy and water on a low heat and let it simmer very slowly. This can take about 20-30 minutes. Make sure to check every now and then to make sure the water hasn't evaporated too quickly in which case you will need to add a little more water to make sure the mixture doesn't dry out.
- When the plums have softened and the water hasn't evaporated completely mix the cornstarch with a little bit of water and add to the plum mixture.
- Leave to simmer for a couple more minutes and mix well to combine. Take the pan off the heat and leave to cool before use. The mixture should be nice and slushy by now.
- Cut strips of parchment paper of 0.4inch by 1.6inch. Place them in a cross in a lightly buttered muffin tin.
- Take the dough out of the fridge and roll out 2/3 of the dough till about 0.16inch thick.
- Cut out circles slightly bigger than the circles of your muffin tin and place them in the muffin tin on top of the crossed strips of parchment paper. Make sure the top of the strips stick out on top.
- Lightly sprinkle some custard powder onto the dough in the muffin tin (optional) and fill with the plum mixture.
- Roll out the left over piece of dough and cut into strips. Place the strips on top of the plum mixture.
- Brush the pies with a little bit of a lightly beaten egg and place into a preheated oven (180°C/360°F).
- Bake the pies 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
- Take the pies out of the muffin tin using the strips of parchment paper and leave to cool on a wire rack. When the pies have cooled down remove the baking strips.
- The water for the plums is an estimation. The mixture should eventually end up in a soft slushy consistency. Just add more water if needed.
- When the circles of dough start to break, don't panic. You can easily patch it back together again in the muffin tin. The circle is only a guide to make sure you have roughly the same amount of dough for each of your pies.
- The custard powder used in this recipe is optional. If you don't have that available you can skip this step.
I hardly ever bake so have no practice but the instructions were easy to follow, the pictures are very helpful too and the mini pies taste and look delightful! All the ratios worked out perfectly, no leftovers of anything.
I’m happy to hear you liked them 😀
can i use fresh plums? Is corn flour the same as corn starch ? what is castor sugar? where do I get custard powder?
This recipe works best with dried plums, fresh plums have a different taste and structure. Cornflour is indeed the same as cornstarch.
Castor sugar is a fine sugar, if you can’t find that you can also use regular granulated sugar. Castor (or caster) sugar just dissolves more easily so I like to use it in baking.
Where I live, custard powder is readily available in the supermarket, however, if you don’t have any custard powder, you can omit that from the recipe. It’s not a dealbreaker in the recipe if you don’t have that available. You could optionally, perhaps sprinkle a little cornstarch on the dough instead to absorb the juices of the plum mixture. I usually have custard powder in the cupboard that’s why I like to use it.
Wow, great directions and pictures. Thank you for sharing. I am a visual learning so seeing how you make them is a thousand times better then reading a recipe and praying thins go well!
Thanks for the compliment, I’m glad you like it 🙂 I hope it’ll help you when baking these delicious pies.