Book Club: Heart Shaped Pizzas + Peach Hand Pies

This month our book club read The Five Love Languages, so I decided to have ‘create your own heart shaped pizzas’ as the main course. I asked everyone to bring a favorite topping to share and I provided the dough, sauce, and cheese. Since our book club is on a weekday, I went with Trader Joe’s pizza dough balls for $1.99 and called it a day. This also allowed everyone to free form their own heart shape and I didn’t have to worry about letting the dough rise while I was at work.

For dessert, I kept with the heart shaped theme and made peach hand pies. I went to the farmer’s market this weekend and the peaches looked perfect and summery. I did as much prep as I could on Sunday night and it helped that this month’s book club was on a Monday. After looking everywhere for my heart shaped cookie cutter and making my kitchen a complete disaster, I decided to go old school and cut out a paper heart to use as a stencil. I served the hand pies with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

We actually read a book for book club this month!  It should be required reading for everyone. You can take the quiz online and my results were not surprising. I love to give gifts, but I’m not big on receiving them. Quality time and words of affirmation were my two highest love languages. I’ve included my favorite quote from the book:

“Love doesn’t keep a score of wrongs. Love doesn’t bring up past failures. None of us is perfect. In marriage we do not always do the right thing. We have sometimes done and said hurtful things to our spouses. We cannot erase the past. We can only confess it and agree that it was wrong. We can ask for forgiveness and try to act differently in the future. Having confessed my failure and asked forgiveness, I can do nothing more to mitigate the hurt it may have caused my spouse. When I have been wronged by my spouse and she has painfully confessed it and requested forgiveness,I have the option of justice or forgiveness. If I choose justice and seek to pay her back or make her pay for her wrongdoing, I am making myself the judge and her the felon. Intimacy becomes impossible. If, however, I choose to forgive, intimacy can be restored. Forgiveness is the way of love.”

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Recipe via Kitchen Joy

For the pastry:

1 1/2 cups flour

1 tablespoon sugar

3/4 teaspoon salt

3/4 cup (1 1/2 sticks) unsalted butter

1 egg

1 1/2 tablespoons milk

1 additional egg, beaten, for brushing pastry

For the filling:

4 large ripe peaches, peeled and diced, about 3 cups (white peaches are my preference)

2 tablespoons flour

2 tablespoons sugar

pinch of salt

1/4 teaspoon vanilla

pinch of ground cinnamon

In a medium bowl, gently combine the diced peaches, flour, sugar, salt, vanilla,and cinnamon. If mixture seems very runny, add up to another tablespoon of flour. Set aside.

In a large bowl, whisk together the flour, sugar, and salt. Cut in the butter with a pastry blender, food processor, fork, or your fingers until the butter is incorporated and is the size of small peas.

In a small bowl, whisk together the whole egg and the milk. Stir the milk mixture into the flour mixture with a wooden spoon, then bring the dough together and knead a few times by hand.

Divide dough in half. Wrap one half in plastic wrap and set aside while you roll out the other half.

Brush the rounds (or hearts) of dough with the beaten egg. (This will be the inside of the pie. The egg wash helps the filling not to get the bottom crust soggy, and also helps to seal the top and bottom pieces of pastry together). Do not discard the rest of the egg wash yet.

Spread about 1-2 tablespoons of the prepared peach filling in the center of each egg-brushed round of dough, leaving about 1/2-inch border.

Roll out remaining dough and cut the tops. Gently lay a dough round on top of each of the filled rounds, pressing around the edges with your fingers to seal in the filling.

Crimp the edges of each pastry with a fork.

Brush the tops of each pastry with the rest of the beaten egg.

Using a fork, poke a few holes in the top of each pie to allow steam to escape during baking.

Refrigerate assembled hand pies for 30 minutes

While the hand pies are chilling, preheat oven to 350 degrees

Bake 20-25 minutes until golden. Allow to cool on baking sheet for 10 minutes before removing to a rack to cool.

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