Today is National Apricot Day. I honestly can't say that I have ever eaten a fresh apricot. My experience with them has only been through the dried version. Though I don't mind eating them raw, I typically prefer using them in my baking, which is exactly where I am going with them today. The first thing that comes to mind is my mom's recipe for apricot fried pies. I know, the words "fried" and "fitness" cannot be used in the same sentence, but I can't resist celebrating this day without just one!
Apricot Fried Pies
Yield: 14 pies
(250 calories each)
6 oz. dried apricots
1-3/4 cups water
1/4 cup sugar
1/2 cup shortening
1/4 tsp salt
1-1/2 cups flour
1/2 tsp baking powder
1/2 cup water
3/4 cup vegetable oil
1. Cut dried apricots in small pieces and place in saucepan with water. Bring to a boil. Cook on medium heat for 30 minutes.
2. Add sugar; stir, and cook for 5-10 minutes more. Let cool while making dough.
3. Using a pastry cutter, blend shortening, salt, flour, and baking powder. When mixture resembles coarse crumbs, add water and knead until dough comes together. Divide dough into 14 equal pieces (approx. 2 tbsp).
4. Roll each piece of dough into a circle and top with filling mixture (heaping tbsp). Fold dough and crimp edge with with a fork dipped in flour.
5. Heat the vegetable oil and fry 2 pies at a time in a 10 inch skillet, turning pie over when brown on bottom. Drain on paper towels.