The container of leaf lard in my freezer got me started on the idea of pie, but making a whole pie for three people seemed excessive. So turnovers came to mind, thinking of the family-style romance of delivering a few warm little packets of sweetness. There were a few apples about to go off on our counter, so I had my mid-winter fruit. What could I do to make it a little different? A sprig of rosemary peeked out of my snow-crusted windowbox on the fire escape; apples and rosemary go nicely. Maybe a pinch of nutmeg for depth. And that, friends, is how the mind of a recipe developer works.
1 recipe single pie crust, chilled* or 1 sheet puff pastry, thawed
1 large apple, about 8-10 ounces, peeled, cored and cut into 1/4-inch dice
2 tablespoons honey
1/4 teaspoon pure vanilla extract
1/8 teaspoon minced fresh rosemary
1/8 teaspoon freshly grated nutmeg
1 tablespoon all-purpose flour
1 egg, lightly beaten
Preheat oven to 375° F.
In a bowl, combine the apple, honey, vanilla, rosemary, nutmeg, flour, and salt. Set aside.
On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pie crust out to a 17- x 9-inch rectangle. (If using puff pastry, unfold the sheet.) Trim to a 16- x 8-inch rectangle. Cut the sheet into eight 4- x 4-inch pieces.
Place a generous spoonful of the apple mixture in the center of each square, leaving at least 3/4-inches around all sides. Using a finger or a pastry brush, gently apply a coat of the beaten egg to the exposed border of the pastry.
Fold each piece to form a triangle. Seal the edges with the tines of a fork, or pinch with two fingers. Brush the tops of the turnovers with more of the egg wash. Slice a few small slits in the top of the turnovers to allow steam to escape.
Place the turnovers on a lined baking sheet and bake for 25-30 minutes, until the tops are golden brown.
* A note about pie crusts using lard:
We have a lot of coverage of pie crusts on The Kitchn, though we have not yet written about pie crusts using lard. My go-to recipe is Melissa Clark's (see Heaven in a Pie Pan: The Perfect Crust).
If you don't have time to find leaf lard, try this recipe, with step-by-step tutorial photos:
• How To Make a Pie Crust from Scratch
More Sweet Projects for Valentine's Day from The Kitchn
(Image: Sara Kate Gillingham-Ryan)