Rainer Cherry Hand Pies

You could make a cherry pie...

rainer cherry

This is the suggestion that I am given whenever the idea of dessert is brought up in my family.  It is the obvious reply to any question.  

What should we make for Thanksgiving?  “You could make a cherry pie.”  What do you want for Father’s Day?  “You could make a cherry pie.”  What’s the best way to celebrate the Fourth of July?  “You could make a cherry pie.”  


rainer cherry

The suggester?  Well, that would be my father.

rainer cherry

My father is not an overly enthusiastic fan of desserts, but cherry pie never ceases to hold his admiration.

rainer cherry

Unfortunately for him, the cherry season is brief, making the pie season equally transient.  So we try to enjoy it to it’s fullest potential.

cherry hand pie

Cherry hand pies.  This is what I made for my father.  



Hand pies are simple.  Unadorned flavors, homey appearances and a long-loved concept.

cherry hand pies

Make a pie for someone you love this weekend.  Oh, and you should eat some too.  



 Pedantic Foodie


Rainer Cherry Hand Pies 

makes 8 pies 

for the crust

  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup granulated sugar (plus extra for dusting)
  • 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter (cut into cubes)
  • 1/4 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons heavy whipping cream 
  • 1 egg 

for the filling 

  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 lb rainer cherries 
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger  

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. 

In the work bowl of your food processor pulse to combine flour, sugar, and salt.  Add butter cubes and pulse several times until butter is in pea-sized pieces.  Add just enough whipping cream to form a rough dough.  Turn out onto a floured surface and form a disc.  Wrap in plastic and refrigerate for about 30 minutes or until just firm.  

Remove stems and pits from cherries and slice in half.  Toss pitted cherries with sugar, lemon juice and ground ginger and place in a small saucepan over medium heat.  Stir often until sugar has dissolved, then cook for 5 minutes.  Remove from heat.  

In a small bowl whisk egg with a teaspoon of water to form an egg wash.  

Turn the refrigerated disc of pie dough out onto a floured surface and roll into a square, about 1/8 inch thick.  Cut 4 x 5 inch rectangles.  

Place about 1.5-2 tablespoons cooked cherries in the middle of the dough rectangle.  Brush edges with beaten egg and fold over.  Use the tines of a fork to seal the edges and brush entire pie with egg and dust with sugar.  Place on a baking sheet lined with parchment and bake for about 15 minutes.  Enjoy!