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You Say Moon Pie, I Say Turnover: The Food Guys Revisit Hand Pies

Apple turnovers
Apple turnovers

The Food Guys return to the object of Jon Jackson's mother's phrase, "There's nothing like an RC and a moon pie." Jon recalls her fruit turnovers, baked from leftover pie pastry, each one clutched in the hand of a child making a beeline for the front door. Moon pies, hand pies, turnovers: call them what you will, they're homey, unpretentious, easy to make, and delicious.

Good turnovers begin with really good pastry: either all-lard, all-butter, or one of these fats combined with a shortening like (heated) coconut oil. For every cup of flour, you'll need a third of a cup of fat, half a teaspoon of salt, and just enough water to hold it all together - about 5 tablespoons. For sturdier dough, use one egg yolk as part of the liquid. Combine, stir and roll out the pastry, cutting it into squares, rectangles or circles. Don't overfill. Fold over, crimp with a fork, brush with egg and bake.

For fruit turnovers, you'll get more snap and crunch by using fillings made of thinly-sliced apples, halved apricots or berries sprinkled with cinammon and sugar. Skip the mushy, puréed fruit.

For savory turnovers, try frying instead of baking. Fill the pastry with ground ham, seasoned ground beef, or chicken, along with caramelized onions and potatoes or puréed, buttered parsnips.


(Broadcast: "The Food Guys," 12/15/19. Listen weekly on the radio at 9:53 a.m. Sundays, or via podcast.)

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