These Fresh Cherry Turnovers are a real treat made with fresh cherries in their own sweet juices folded into a flaky pie crust.
Our friends gave us cherries from their tree a few days ago, inspiring this delicious recipe. Fresh, local produce is the highlight of summer for me—I love the idea of food that is only hours from the vine.
I am not opposed to using canned fruit for cherry turnovers, especially if I do not have the time to pit, peel, or prepare fresh fruits. However, when I get the chance to have cherries picked at their peak, that is an easy “yes” regardless of the extra prep.
When you make a fruit filling at home you have more control over the consistency and sugar content. Fruit ripened on the tree requires less sugary syrup.
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By using less sugar and water in the recipe, you end up with more fruit and less filler. Even when I do use canned fruit, I use Comstock More Fruit Pie Filling and remove much of the syrup through a colander.
Any pie crust recipe or ready-made crust can be used in place of the butter crust. However, a butter crust has superior flavor and avoids the trans-fats of shortening used in most pie crust recipes and store-bought varieties.
Butter crusts are a little more delicate to work with during the summer, requiring some refrigerator time to maintain its workability, but the extra effort is well worth it.
For a gluten-free alternative, check out our Oat Flour Pie Crust too.
Fresh Cherry Turnovers
- 2 cups fresh cherris , pitted
- 1/3 cup sugar
- 1/3 cup water
- 1 1/2 tablespoons cornstarch
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
Pie Crust: (2 crust pie recipe)
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 1 cup whole wheat flour (King Arthur White Whole Wheat)
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon cinnamon
- 2/3 cup butter
- 2 tablespoons sugar
- 4-5 tablespoons icy cold water
- 1 cup powdered sugar
- 2 tablespoons milk
- 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
- Preheat oven to 425°. In a saucepan, combine pitted cherries with the water, sugar, cornstarch and almond extract. Over med-high heat, stir to combine and bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low and simmer 6-8 minutes, stirring frequently, until thickened. Cool completely before using.
- Mix flours, salt, cinnamon, and sugar. Cut the cold butter with a knife into small cubes. Work the butter into the flour mixture with a pastry tool or work the butter through the fingertips until particles are size of small peas.
- Sprinkle with water, 1 tablespoon at a time, tossing with fork until all flour is moistened and pastry almost cleans side of bowl. Once the water is added it is important to not overwork the dough.
- Place the dough in the refrigerator for 5-10 minutes to keep the butter in the dough from becoming too warm.
- Divide pastry in half allowing half to remain in the refrigerator to keep the butter cold. Roll half of the pastry dough onto a lightly floured surface to 1/8″ thickness. Cut circles of 6 inches in diameter.
- Using a pastry scraper or lasagna spatula, slide the scraper under the dough to release it from the counter (this will make folding it over the filling easier). Repeat with remaining dough.
- Spoon approximately 1/2 cup of the filling into the center of the circle of pastry; fold pastry dough over the filling and seal with a fork along the edges.
- Place on a parchment lined baking sheet leaving 2″ of space between each turnover. Bake for 10-12 minutes or until lightly golden brown. Cool on wire racks.
- Prepare icing by mixing powdered sugar, milk, and extract until well blended; set aside until turnovers are cooled. Drizzle icing on the turnovers as desired. Serve with a side of vanilla ice cream.
These little pies make the best dessert and so much better than the pies my mom would buy.