For some reason we tend to only have pie on Thanksgiving. My Mom is the pie maker in the family but from time to time I will dabble in pie but nothing serious. Funnily enough I have been wanting to perfect a pie crust for a while though. I tend to be a little more interested in the crust than the filing. I love a nice buttery, flaky crust. Pie crust is not exactly something that can easily be made low calorie. Oh I tried and tried and tried. I tried substituting Greek yogurt for some of the cold butter – what a mushy mess. I tried light butter – watery! I gave up for a while then I saw Laura Calder make a pie crust with softened butter. Sure it would be a little firmer and slightly cookie like but I could substitute Greek yogurt for some of the butter. Woo hoo – I had my crust.
The apple filing was easy. You know my love of all things cinnamon so that went into the mix. I replaced white flour for wheat flour as a thickener. Threw in a little lemon zest and juice for freshness and lickety split I had apple pie filing. There is no need to cook the filing before hand. It cooks to a perfect consistency in the oven. Easy Peasy.
When I originally started thinking about a pie recipe for Thanksgiving, I could not decide between apple or pecan pie so I combined them. Why choose when you can have the best of both worlds. A nice little crunch on top of the sweet apple pie is just perfect. I baked them in mini muffin tins so they would be bite size. You can have one or a few. You can make them with the pie crust on the bottom or turn them upside down and put the pie crust on top. Just a warning, the pie crust is much easier to work with when it is on the bottom of the pie. It gets difficult to form it onto the top of the pie filing. They are rather gorgeous little things, if I do say so myself. Try them for yourselves.
Mini Apple Pecan Pies (Makes 24)
For the crust:
1/4 cup unsalted butter, softened
2 tbsp. 0% fat Greek Yogurt
1/4 cup granulated sugar
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
2/3 cup (80 grams) all-purpose, unbleached flour
1/3 cup (40 grams) whole wheat pastry flour
For the apple filing:
1 granny smith apple, peeled and diced
1 tbsp. while wheat pastry flour
1 tbsp. brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp. Domino Light (sugar/stevia mix)
1/4 tsp. lemon zest
1/2 tsp. lemon juice
1 1/2 tsp. ground cinnamon
1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
For the pecan topping:
1/2 cup finely chopped pecans
2 tbsp. brown sugar
2 tbsp. light butter, melted
- Preheat oven to 400°.
- Spray a 24-cup mini muffin tin with non-stick baking spray.
- For the crust: cream butter, sugar and yogurt.
- Stir in the vanilla. Then mix in the white and wheat flour until a smooth dough forms.
- Press 2 tsp. of pie dough into each muffin cup pushing the dough up the sides of the cup.
- With a fork, prick holes in the bottom of each pie crust.
- Bake for 5 minutes.
- In a large bowl, combine apple, flour, brown sugar, Domino light, lemon zest, lemon juice, cinnamon, nutmeg and vanilla.
- In a small bowl, toss together pecans, sugar and melted butter.
- Spoon 1 tbsp. apple mixture into each cup.
- Top with 1 tsp. pecan mixture.
- Bake for 10 to 15 minutes.
- Place on a wire rack to cool.
Nutritional value per mini pie:
Calories 68 Fat 3 grams Carbs 9 grams Protein 1 gram
You can also see this recipe at some of the Linky Parties listed on my link party page