As a child, I strongly and almost exclusively associated the definition of baking with the action of flattening dough with a rolling pin. So much so that I never truly considered making cookies baking – which ads a delightful touch of irony to my current preferences.

Cooking shows were standard television viewing when my Harriet (or grandmother as many children might call their female grandparent) would watch us. The use of rolling pins seemed like a special and coveted action.

Every once in a while – usually around major calendar holidays and of course my Dad’s annual strawberry rhubarb pie – I harken back to my need to take rolling pin to dough while propelling flour onto the floor and in my hair and inevitably into various nooks and crannies in the kitchen.

These little darlings are a wonderful way to experiment with flavor combinations and please various palette without committing to a single pie that is one flavor. Plus it is fun!


Give a high-five for individual hand pies! And yes  I nibbled that one on the left that seems to be missing an edge.


Pie Crust – Store-bought or homemade, follow your heart!
1 Cup Fresh Strawberries, Hulled & Sliced
Fresh Basil, Julienned
2-3 Tbs. Balsamic Vinegar
1 Cup Blueberries (Fresh or Frozen)
1 Grapefruit
1 Cup Cherries (I used frozen as the seed is already removed and they turn out beautifully)
½ Cup Dark Chocolate Morsels
Vanilla Sugar (or Regular Sugar)
1 Egg
Large Granule Sugar


  • Preheat the oven to 375°F
  • Place each type of fruit in their own bowls
Strawberries, Cherries, Blueberries, Basil
  • Pour the balsamic vinegar over the strawberries (I used a fancy blueberry balsamic vinegar, but just use one that you really like)
  • Add the basil and sprinkle a couple tablespoons of vanilla sugar on top, mix to combine and set aside
  • Zest the grapefruit (make sure you wash it first) and add the zest to the bowl of blueberries
  • Depending on the size of the grapefruit you might use ½ or ¼ of the entire thing – I had a smaller grapefruit so I juiced half and added that to the blueberries
  • Sprinkle a couple tablespoons of vanilla sugar on top, mix to combine and set aside
  • Give the cherries a rough chop before adding them to the bowl then sprinkle with a couple tablespoons of vanilla sugar and – drumroll please – set aside
  • If using homemade pie dough, it is easier to divide it in half and roll out each half one at a time
  • Roll out the dough and cut into squares or circles or individual sections of unknown geometry


  • Spoon the filling into the center, sip your fingers in a little water to moisten the edges before sealing them together
  • Either use a fork or your fingers to crimp the edges together before placing on a prepared baking sheet
  • When filling the cherry pies, spoon the cherries on then place the chocolate morsels on top
  • After the hand pies are lined up on the baking sheet, beat the egg with a splash of water and brush the tops of the pies with the egg wash
  • Drop generous pinches of large granule sugar across the top


  • Bake for 15 minutes, rotate the pans, then allow to bake for another 10-15 minutes or until the filling is bubbly, the edges are crisp, and the top has turned to that comforting golden color20180327_084448

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