In the South, fried hand pies are known as Fried Pies. Around here, they are known simply as hand pies with the only difference being, they are baked. If the people around here had a fried pie, I'm sure they would not want to go back to a baked pie.
I honestly believe EVERY home cook should know the secret to fail proof fried pies. I remember when this secret was shared with me after I wasted spent several hours trying to make a batch which did not turn out too good. With a plate full of pies that were either undercooked or crispier than crispy I was ready to throw in the towel.
Don't get me wrong, fried pies made with a homemade pie crust are not hard to make. But sometimes, a craving for fried pies hit you out of nowhere and rolling that crust thin enough can be troublesome when you are trying to answer the call for the craving. If it is too thick you end up with a doughy dough on the inside and overcooked on the outside.
I remember how my sister was told the secret to making fried pies by a little elderly lady who was a patient at the doctor's office where she worked. When she told me about it, I was a little surprised. I even found that Paula Deen makes fried pies this way. ~ Who knew?
I'm sure you are probably wondering what the secret is. Well, hold on to your chair because you want believe it either... CANNED BISCUITS!
In the past, I used Butter Me Not biscuits because they were recommended and they give the crust a buttery taste, which is just S-C-R-U-M-P-I-O-U-S! I quickly learned this weekend, the stores in my area do not carry any type of butter-me-nots, so I had to use regular biscuits. I could tell a difference in the crust, but they still turned out good!
I only make my pies with an apple pie filling, and I do not use a store bought filling. I make a tiny batch from my Ball Blue Book for my pies. I'm sure any homemade or store bought filling will work and taste just fine.
You have to excuse this next picture. I was doing everything I could to not get in a hurry while cooking and photographing so I would have the direct sunlight on the kitchen counter. No, I wasn't doing both at the same time, but I was working on keeping the sticky goodness from everything I touched; camera included.
Southern Fried Pies
⅓ cup Sugar
1 Tbsp Cornstarch
¼ tsp Cinnamon
½ -¾ cup Water
2 Apples sliced
Pour water into a pan over medium heat. Combine sugar, cornstarch, cinnamon and water. ell, and bring to a boil. Boil for 2 minutes, stirring constantly.Add apples and return to a boil. Reduce heat, cover and simmer until apples are tender, about 6 to 8 minutes. Cool completely.
Pie Crust: 1 (10 count) tube regular size biscuits flour oil Roll biscuits out on a floured surface. You want them to be thin but not too thin about ⅛ of an inch. Place a spoonful of filling onto the dough and fold over and crimp with fork (pressing the edges together). Be sure your edges are crimped or you'll end up with the filling trying to escape while the pie is frying.
Heat oil in a deep-fryer, large saucepan or use your cast iron skillet. Oil should be about 375 (medium/high). Fry the pies, a couple at a time, 2 to 3 minutes on each side; cook until the crust is golden brown. Drain on paper towels. I know someone is going to say, "We'll that really isn't a pie, since you are not using pie crust." My response would be... Not everyone can make a descent pie crust; just look at the freezer section in your local grocery store. Sometimes, time is of the essence and it's a whole lot quicker and easier to wop a can of biscuits than to spend time mixing, chilling, and rolling out a fabulous pie crust.