Skip to main content

The Manual may earn a commission when you buy through links on our site.

You’ll Want this Fruit Hand Pie Recipe for Your Kentucky Derby Party

As you get ready for the all-day party that is the Kentucky Derby this Saturday, you’re probably trying to figure out what foods you’re going to want to serve. You’ve got the drinks down — mint juleps, obviously — but what to go with those delicious and boozy drinks?

(By the way, if you need bourbon for your juleps, check out this list.)

Related Videos

Well, if you’re not going to actually be at Churchill Downs, but want to pretend, then you should probably take a cue from the folks that prepare the food at the site.

First, you’re going to want finger foods, and finger foods that aren’t all that messy – you’re wearing your best race-day gear, after all. These meatball, cucumber, and mint skewers are a great option, as are these mini biscuit sandwiches.

Great, you’ve got the savory down. Now, you just need something sweet. That’s where hand pies come in.

Hand pies are an easy and delicious way to convey sweetness without a ton of mess. Heck, you don’t even need a plate if you don’t want one. Instead, hold that sucker like a Hot Pocket and go to town.

(Just keep it classy, this is the Derby, after all.)

This recipe for mixed berry hand pies comes to us from David Danielson, executive chef of Churchill Downs. Danielson is also the author of the 2018 book , so it’s safe to say he knows what he’s doing.

Mixed Berry Hand Pies

Mini Fruit Hand Pies
Churchill Downs

Ingredients for the berry mixture:

  • 4 c mixed berries (fresh or frozen)
  • 4 tbsp honey
  • .25 c sugar
  • 2 tbsp cornstarch
  • 2 tbsp water
  • Dash of lemon juice

Ingredients for the pie crust:

  • 5 c flour
  • .5 tbsp sugar
  • .5 tsp sea salt
  • .5 lb cold unsalted butter, diced into .25-inch pieces
  • 6 tbsp ice water
  • 3 tbsp milk
  • 1 egg
  • .5 cup sliced hearts of palm
  • 1 avocado, .5-inch dice
  • .75 cup red wine vinaigrette
  • .5 cup gribiche sauce
  • Juice of 1 lemon

Method for the berry mixture:

  1. Place berries, honey, and sugar into a medium saucepan and cook over high heat until the berries have begun to release their juices.
  2. Mix together the water, dash of lemon juice, and cornstarch and add to mixture; stirring often, continue to cook the berries until the sauce has thickened, place in bowl and refrigerate until cold.

Method for the pie crust:

  1. Place flour, sugar, and salt into the bowl of a food processor and pulse a few times to combine.
  2. Add cold diced butter and pulse the mixture until coarse crumbs form with some pea-sized pieces, then stop mixing. Mixture should be dry and powdery.
  3. Add ice water and pulse until moist clumps or small balls begin to form.
  4. Transfer dough to a clean work surface and gather together into a ball (DO NOT KNEAD).
  5. Divide dough in half and flatten, cover in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 1 hour before using.

Assemble and cook:

  1. Once berries and pie crust(s) have rested, remove the pie crust and using a large circle cutter, cut pie crust, using as much dough as possible.
  2. Afterwards take your cold mixed berries and place 1-2 tbsp of mixture inside the dough circles and fold into a crescent moon shape.
  3. Close together with a fork making fluted lines along the top of the turnover; brush with a small amount of milk and 1 egg, then bake at 375 degrees F until golden brown.
  4. Finish with berries and caramel sauce.

Editors' Recommendations

How to use balsamic vinegar in cocktails to add depth, complexity, and flavor
Ever thought about putting balsamic vinegar in your drink? You should, and here's why (and how, with some recipes)
An Olivo Amigo cocktail.

Most of us don't know how to use balsamic vinegar. At the very least, we're under-using it, reserving it for those cool dark drops in a bowl of olive oil for bread dipping, and little more. Well, it's great in a lot of things, even cocktails.

Yes, the cocktail kingdom can take on any number of interesting ingredients, often to great effect. Want proof? Try mixing cocktails with marsala or cocktails with butter. You'll adore the results. If you're after a little sweetness and brightness, balsamic vinegar can be utilized in many cocktail recipes too.

Read more
These are the 6 classic tequila cocktail recipes you need to know
Mixing a drink with tequila as the star? Here are 6 recipes you ought to know how to make

In the rich canon of cocktail culture, tequila is a big player. The agave spirit serves as the backbone from everything from a classic Margarita to a refreshing Paloma. In short, if you have a home bar, it better have a few decent bottles of tequila in the mix.

While there are some great sipping tequilas, much of what's out there tends to do better with some complementary ingredients. That's where these classic tequila cocktails really shine, blending the earthy and spicy punch of tequila with bright-as-the-sun citrus and more.

Read more
10 foods you should never freeze (no matter how much money you save bulk buying)
Can you freeze previously frozen meat? How about coffee? Learn which foods should stay out of the freezer
food items you shouldnt freeze frozen in freezer

The freezer is one of the modern age's greatest inventions. Who among us hasn't over-indulged at Costco after being seduced by the delicious samples and then returned home, grateful for the backup garage freezer? Its convenience is unmatched for storing things like extra proteins, tasty ice creams, cookie doughs, and, if you're a parent, bags and bags of frozen dino nuggets. Freezing food is not only a convenient way to stock up on frequently used ingredients, but it's a great way to save money as well.
Unfortunately, not everything stands up to the frozen tundra of the garage freezer as well as those tasty dino nuggets. These are a few of the items you should never put in the freezer.


Read more