An easy cream cheese pastry is the base for these simple muffin cup pies. The sweetened cream cheese layer is a delicious surprise!
Prep Time: 20 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 45 minutes
Yield: Makes 12 Small Pies or Tarts
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, 4 ounces, room temperature
- 8 ounces cream cheese, room temperature, divided
- 1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour, 7 1/2 ounces, plus more for rolling
- 4 tablespoons heavy cream
- 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
- 1/4 teaspoon salt
- 1 egg white
- 1/3 cup confectioners' sugar (powdered sugar)
- 1/2 teaspoon lemon juice
- 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 can (21 ounces) cherry pie filling
- ice cream, whipped cream, or whipped topping for serving
In a mixing bowl with electric mixer, beat the butter and half (4 ounces) of the cream cheese until creamy. Beat in the heavy cream.
In another bowl, combine the flour, sugar, and salt. Blend well. Add the flour mixture to the butter mixture and beat on low speed until clumps form. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and knead a few times to pull it together. Flatten into 2 disk shapes and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
Meanwhile, prepare the cream cheese filling. Put the remaining 4 ounces of cream cheese in a medium bowl. Beat until smooth. Add the egg white, confectioners' sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla; beat for about 2 minutes. Refrigerate until the tarts are shaped.
Heat the oven to 375° F .
Take the pastry from the refrigerator and remove the plastic wrap from one disk. Dust with flour and roll out thinly between sheets of wax paper. You may need to add more flour and change the paper a few times if the pastry begins to stick. Using large cutter,* about 4 1/2 to 5 inches, cut out circles. Reroll the scraps and continue. Repeat with the second disk. Fit the circles into the muffin cups.
Put about 2 teaspoons of the chilled cream cheese mixture in each pastry tart, then top with a tablespoon or more of cherry pie filling. I put about 1 tablespoon in each, then add more with what I have left in the can.
Bake for about 24 to 27 minutes, until the visible crust is browned and cherry filling is bubbling.
Let the little pies cool and serve with ice cream or whipped cream.
*If you don't have a large cutter, use a bowl and pastry wheel, knife, or pizza cutter to cut out the circles. Or, cut out smaller circles with a 3-inch cutter and roll them to the larger size.
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