an Oh My! Kitchen Party submission by April Heather Davulcu of April Heather Art
I’ve spent the past 12 years living on the East Coast, and as a native Texan, it’s taken me about 11 to get used to it. In an attempt to connect with home I often made my grandmother’s Apricot Fried Pies, but they always tasted like they were missing something. Over the years I played with the recipe, tweaking and testing, until one day I woke up and realized the pies were perfect—it was me that was missing something. My homesickness was causing me to miss out on the beauty in my own life—and that made those pies taste bittersweet. When I began to look around and appreciate the blessings in my life, rather than wish for something else, I realized home isn’t somewhere you can go—its inside. I make these pies now as a celebration of where I am and where I’ve been and I’ll tell you something, that does taste mighty darn sweet.
From my grandmother, Vernell Duvall, with the help of Food Network’s “Old Timey Apricot Fried Pie”
To Make the Crust
- 3 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 TBSP powdered sugar
- ½ tsp salt
- 1 TBSP white vinegar
- 1 egg yolk
- 1 ¼ sticks butter
- ¾ cup ice water
- 1 egg beaten, for egg wash
Place first 5 ingredients in food processor and pulse once. Add butter, while pulsing until dough is the consistency of cornmeal. Then add ice water until dough forms a ball. Wrap dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes
To Make the Apricot filling:
- 2 cups dried apricots, diced
- 1 8 oz jar apricot jam
- 6 oz water (or apricot nectar)
- 1 cup sugar
- 2 TBSP cornstarch mixed with 2 TBSP cold water for thickening
- dash of vanilla
- vegetable oil for frying
- Powdered sugar mixed with water &/ or lemon juice for the glaze
Combine first 4 ingredients in a medium saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat, stirring often, about 10-15 minutes. Add cornstarch mixture and continue to stir as mix thickens. Turn off heat and add vanilla extract. Let cool. (mixture will thicken to consistency of jam)
Making the Pies
- Now pour vegetable oil in a large heavy bottom skillet and heat to about 360 degrees F.
- While the oil is heating, flour your counter and remove dough from plastic wrap. Flour a rolling pin and roll out dough to about 1/8 thickness or less. Cut into 5 inch circles. Spoon about 2 TBSP of apricot filling into the center of each circle. Brush edges with water or egg wash, fold over, and seal with your finger first, then a fork.
- Add pie to hot oil-stand back!-in batches and cook until golden brown, turning in oil as needed. Remove to drain on a draining rack lined with paper towels.
- Drizzle sugar glaze loosely over the top of the pies and let cool. ENJOY!! They are a real Texas treat!
Here’s my grandmothers original recipe quoted exactly as she wrote it in her handwriting:
Apricot Fried Pie
Package of apricots, cook in water ‘til tender. Mash & sweeten until you like.
- 2 cups flour
- ½ tsp salt
- 1/3 cup shortening
work in until like meal, use water to blend together.
Roll out until ¼ inch thick, use a small bowl to cut circles.
Fill each circle with 1 TBSP apricot + 1 pat of margarine. Seal and fry in hot oil, turning ‘til brown. Do it fast as fast as you can so they don’t burn.
Say hello to Heather!
Heather Davulcu is the artist behind April Heather Art. Heather started out painting murals in Austin in 1994. She relocated to Bucks County, PA where she now works from her home studio happily creating illustrations and art for licensing. She is married to her college sweetheart and has 2 daughters.