My mom hosted the gnarliest girls night at home when I was a kid. To a five-year-old me, they were wild and insane. But now, in hindsight it was probably the only relaxation time she had with our family and her friends. It consisted in all of my aunts and their friends coming to the apartment and playing bingo. Also, some light gambling. I remember playing under the table while they gossiped about things I can’t remember or were beyond me. It was awesome. I remember feeling like a grown up (at 5!) just by being surrounded by the amazing women in my life. Also, my grandma was the fucking boss.
Often when they couldn’t play at home, they’d go to an underground bingo at the 181st subway station in Manhattan. My mom would take me with her when she couldn’t get one of my cousins or brothers to look after me. She doesn’t believe in baby sitters. So I would go there and hang out. But sitting down on a table wasn’t my thing. I would fidget and it was just terrible. I remember being restless and annoying so she’d leave me at the cafeteria with my brother’s godmother, Miriam. It’s the only place where I’d sit still. There, Miriam taught me how to make pastelitos. Pastelitos are pastry in the shape of small pockets. They’re also known as empanadas. Often filled with savory fillings such as chicken, beef, cheese, or sweet fillings like guayaba. I perfectly remember closing the little pockets with a plastic fork so vividly. My biggest responsibility in life at that moment: don’t let the filling spill. This memory came rushing to me as I was making these little hand pies on a Saturday afternoon, so I just had to share. Anyway, it’s fall! Time to bake pies nonstop, apple pie to be specific!
This recipe is crazy simple. But it takes a little time and patience when it comes to making the pastelitos-I’ll explain that bit later.
What you’ll need:
- 4 granny Smith apples: diced
- 1 lime (and the skin)
- 1/2 sugar (brown)
- 2 tablespoons of all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon of cinnamon
- 1 teaspoon of salt
- pre-made baking dough
- 1 egg lightly beaten
So this is what you’re going to do: mix all of the ingredients (except the dough and egg, those later) into a bowl.
Then, roll out your dough and use a circle-shaped cookie cutter to make 2-2 1/2 inches circles to fill them with the apple mixture. And preheat your oven to 425F or 220C.
After you’ve placed the mixture, fold the dough and using a fork, press on the sides to close them.
You can either make them one on top of the other or fold them in half. This used to be MY THING when I was a kid and I was learning how to make these. No one was good as me! 🙂
Do this until you’ve finished with all of your dough.
Now apply the eggwash with a brush and pop those sweet, sweet little babies into the oven! Please use an anti-stick baking sheet to avoid having your sweet, beautiful apple pie pastelitos ruined! 🙂
Bake them for about 15-18 minutes, or until they’re golden brown and smell amazing. Once your kitchen smells like sweet and delicious cinnamon treats, they’re done!
So, what do you think? Are you a fan of savory pastelitos or sweet? Let me know in the comments! 🙂