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Sugar Free Apricot Pies & More

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Things have been extraordinarily busy around here. Spent Saturday working in the yard and garden – perfect weather. I’ve got all my vegetable plants set out and David had some old coffee cans stashed in the red barn so we cut the bottoms out and pressed them into the dirt around the plants mole barriers. Luckily so far the moles have only gotten two of my black-eyed pea plants and those were not ‘protected’. I’m hoping if the moles run into the sides of the can – they’ll detour right out of the garden.

While I was out in the garden on Saturday, David finished up on the extension of the bedroom closet taking in the unused length of the bathroom along the same wall (they had an adjoining door) . . . in effect doubling my closet space. How wonderful! For the first time I feel like I’ve got enough closet space for everything!! He even went so far as to build in shelving over the clothes poles so we can store ‘stuff’. Haven’t decided what kink of stuff we’ll put in there but I’m sure we’ll find something.  

For Mother’s Day we went to Crockett for a double celebration – Mother’s Day and my Aunt Rose’s 102nd birthday – it was quite the celebration.  [ While there I couldn’t resist taking some pictures of  these pretty flowers blooming in Nancy’s yard.   ]    Everyone was there – and per ususal there was lots of good food to be eaten. Nancy fixed her special chicken and dressing along with a delicious ham and all the trimmings. Of course, there were lots of desserts to choose from – pineapple upside down cake (best I’ve ever eaten), cheesecake, apricot salad, and chocolate covered strawberries. Everyone had a really good time – and as I’ve said before, spending time with Aunt Rose is always a treat.

Started the week off picking berries Monday morning – dew berries or black berries – never sure which it is. There are lots of them this year and we will enjoy them. Forgot to mention, spent part of Saturday making some fried pies. Have you noticed that the things you remember as a child are never quite the same as an adult.

Such was David’s memory of dried apricots. Saw them at the grocery store and remembered loving them as a child – so we bought some. But wait… guess what? They’re not the same! So, what do you do with 2 pounds of dried apricots. (Yes, men always have to have the biggest bag available 😉 ) For a month I shuffled  that bag of apricots around in the fridge, until I had a bit of a brainstorm Saturday. I had bought a couple of pears at the store and thought that apricots and pears sounded pretty good together. So I whipped up a fruit concoction of apricots, pears and raisins – stuffed the filling into some pie dough and fried them up. They were delicious – in fact I think they are my favorite fried pie ever. I made them sugar free so didn’t mind having David eat one with a little ice cream. If you do not have any apricots around, these fried pies make it worth buying a bag (small one ladies) just to try this recipe.

What you’ll need:

  • 1 cup dried apricots
  • 1 medium size pear (peeled, cored and sliced)
  • 1/4 cup raisins
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 cup Splenda
  • 1/4-1/3 cup water
  • 1 recipe of pie dough (makes 4 fried pies)

Put the first 6 ingredients in a small sauce pan and cook over a low heat stirring occasionally. Add a little extra water as needed to keep the fruit from sticking and burning. Cook until the dried apricots and pears are soft.   You do not want to have any excess water.  Remove from heat and cool.

Roll out the pie dough (I like using Pillsbury pie dough-no added work) and cut into 4 sections. Place one-fourth of the fruit mixture on each piece of dough, fold and crimp the edges with a fork dipped in water. Fry the pies in pre-heated oil (medium heat) until golden brown.

When done, carefully remove the pies and place on paper towels to drain. That’s it. If you can have sugar, use regular sugar in the recipe – I think it always makes things taste better.

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