If you fancy both chocolate and pie like me, this one’s for you! Chocolate hand pies are everything – crusty, creamy, crunchy, and flavorful. I made this recipe while thinking of my favorite store-bought treat – Ferrero Roscher. It is like a little homage to famous little Italian choco truffles.
Imagine a flaky crust filled with rich chocolate ganache – it rarely goes better than this, isn’t it? The taste goes from sugary to bitter, blending all the flavors into one scrumptious bite! Yes, you can buy something similar in the store, but nothing compares to fresh-from-the-oven double chocolate hand pies!
What Makes These Double Chocolate Hand Pies Special?
I can never have enough chocolate, so I add it to both the dough and the filling. I like to use high-quality unsweetened cocoa in the crust for the earthy base note, but dark and milk chocolate for the ganache. What’s more, I adore adding some crushed toasted hazelnuts for more texture and flavor.
Hazelnuts alone have side earthy notes which blend impeccably with choco filling. I like to make pies extra crusty as I want them to have those crunchy sounds when I bite into them. These pastries are real choco-heavens you shouldn’t sleep on!
How to Make Double Chocolate Hand Pies?
Hand pies are surprisingly easy to make, as you don’t need much skill, just a good blender! The trick is to not overdo the dough for it to keep its flaky and light texture, plus some more of them I’m going to note in the text below. The ingredient list is short, so here is what you need!
- Flour – Use all-purpose flour, never cake or bread flour.
- Cocoa – Cocoa gives a chocolaty taste and a touch of bitterness.
- Butter – Butter gives the signature brittle, but tender texture.
- Yolks – Egg yolks make the dough more elastic and easier to roll out.
- Water – Use ice-cold water to prevent the butter from melting, as it’s the key to the crusty dough.
- Vanilla – I add a drop or two of vanilla extract to enhance the chocolaty flavor.
- Sugar – Use powdered sugar to blend perfectly, but just a bit so the dough doesn’t crack.
- Heavy cream – It gives an ideal texture to the ganache.
- Chocolate – I mix dark and milk chocolate for the best flavor.
- Hazelnuts – This ingredient is optional, but it gives an amazing crunch and relish.
Now, let’s make the best pie you’ll ever have!
Step 1: Making the Dough
The first step is to freeze cubed butter, so it’s easier to blend. Sift and combine together dry ingredients: flour, powdered sugar, cocoa, and a pinch of salt. Transfer them to the blender and add butter cubes, egg yolks, and a droplet of vanilla extract.
Pulsate the blender until you get a crumbly texture. Now, add spoon by spoon of ice-cold water – until it’s combined. Be careful not to add too much water, though, the dough shouldn’t be moist. You’ll need to shape it by hand, but not knead it at all, so the butter doesn’t melt.
Divide the shaped ball into two parts, form discs, and wrap each into the plastic foil. Let it chill in the fridge for 1 hour minimally.
Step 2: Rolling the Dough
Place the baking paper on the counter, as it’s the simplest way to roll the dough out between two papers without adding much flour. Dust the paper with flour or preferably cocoa, because it won’t leave white traces after baking.
Roll out the dough fresh from the fridge. It will be hard, though, so if you can’t roll it out immediately, leave it for about 5 minutes on the counter to soften. Lightly pat the dough with a rolling pin until it’s easy to roll out.
It should be about 1/8 inch (4 millimeters) thin. Use a cookie cutter to shape circles (or any other shape you want) and remove the rest of the dough. Arrange those circles on the baking tray and leave them in the fridge for at least 30 minutes.
Step 3: Making the Ganache
While the dough circles are chilling, toast the hazelnuts in the oven for about 15 minutes at 350° F (175° C). Just arrange them on the baking tray in a single layer, as that’s the way to skyrocket the nutty flavor. Now, it will be easy to peel their thin skin, just rub them with a napkin or paper cloth and it will come off.
Use a knife or blender to chop the hazelnuts. If you’re using a blender, pulsate it just a few times and be careful not to turn it into powder. You are aiming for the crunch, whatsoever.
In the meantime, bring heavy cream to a boil and immediately remove it from the stove. Add dark and milk chocolate (chopped or drops) and whisk lightly until smooth and well-combined. Add crunched hazelnuts and combine one more time.
Leave the chocolate ganache at the side and skip to the next step.
Step 4: Assembling the Pies
Remove the shaped dough from the fridge and let’s assemble the hand pies. Depending on the size of your circles, place a teaspoon or two of choco ganache in the center. Be careful not to overpack the pastries as they will leak.
Use the egg whites you separated from the yolks, and brush the rim of the dough circle with them. Fold the dough on top of each other and press the edges with the fork. That will secure the folded dough to stay in place. Use a knife to make three slits on the top, so the pastry can breathe while baking.
Now, put back those hand pies in the fridge while the oven heats.
Step 5: Baking and Serving
Heat your oven to 375° F (190° C). Toss the baking tray in the oven for about half an hour. Leave them on the rack for them to cool before serving.
Tip: Make sure your oven is heated well, as that’s the only way to keep the bottom of the pie flaky.
Drizzle some chocolate over and dust the pies generously with powdered sugar and enjoy!
How to Store Double Chocolate Hand Pies?
The hand pies are undoubtedly the tastiest on the same day. But, they are good to eat for three days but keep them in airtight containers only. They will do the best job of keeping them tender but still crusty.
Unbaked hand pies are freezer-friendly, just swathe them one by one into the plastic wrap and place them into freezer bags. Store them for about 3 months, or leave them in the fridge for 3 days. The best thing is you don’t need to defrost them at all, just bake them straight from the freezer.
When it comes to freezing baked hand pies, they are good to freeze for 3 months, as well. The taste and texture will be slightly changed, to be honest. This is a recipe for a smaller batch, so you can easily double it!
Double Chocolate Hand Pies
- 1 Rolling Pin
- 1 blender
- 1 Cookie tray
- 2 cups all-purpose flour (250 grams)
- ¼ cup cocoa (20 grams)
- ¼ cup powdered sugar (20 grams)
- ½ tsp salt
- ⅔ cup butter (150 grams)
- 2 egg yolks
- 1-2 tbsp ice-cold water
- 2-3 drops vanilla extract
- ½ cup heavy cream (120 milliliters)
- 2 oz dark chocolate (60 grams)
- 2 oz milk chocolate (60 grams)
- 1 ½ oz hazelnuts (40 grams)
Making the Dough
- Freeze cubed butter.
- Blend dry ingredients such as flour, powdered sugar, cocoa, and a touch of salt in a sifter.
- Move the blended ingredients to a blender, then add the frozen butter cubes, egg yolks, and a small amount of vanilla extract.
- Pulse the blender until a crumbly consistency is achieved.
- Add spoon by spoon of ice-cold water – until it's combined. Be careful not to add too much water, though, the dough shouldn't be moist. You'll need to shape it by hand, but not knead it at all, so the butter doesn't melt.
- Split the dough into two portions, create discs, and wrap each in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Rolling the Dough
- Lay baking paper on the countertop and sprinkle it with cocoa.
- Roll out the dough fresh from the fridge. It will be hard, though, so if you can't roll it out immediately, leave it for about 5 minutes on the counter to soften. Lightly pat the dough with a rolling pin until it's easy to roll out.
- Roll the dough until it is 1/8 inch (4 millimeters) thin. Cut out circles or your desired shapes with a cookie cutter, and transfer them to a baking tray. Chill the dough circles in the refrigerator for a minimum of 30 minutes.
Making the Ganache
- Toast hazelnuts in a preheated oven at 350° F (175° C) for around 15 minutes, arranged in a single layer on a baking tray. After baking, use a cloth to rub off the skins.
- Use a knife or blender to chop the hazelnuts. If you're using a blender, pulsate it a few times and be careful not to turn it into powder.
- In the meantime, heat the heavy cream until it boils, then remove it from heat. Mix in chopped dark and milk chocolate, whisking gently until smooth and well combined. Add crushed hazelnuts and stir again.
Assembling the Pies
- Depending on the size of your circles, place a teaspoon or two of choco ganache in the center. Be careful not to overpack the pastries as they will leak.
- Brush the edges of the dough circles with the egg whites separated from the yolks.
- Fold the dough on top of each other and press the edges with the fork and make three slits on top with a knife. That will secure the folded dough to stay in place.
- Put hand pies back in the fridge while the oven heats.
Baking and Serving
- Preheat the oven to 375° F (190° C) and bake the hand pies for approximately 30 minutes.
- Leave them on the rack for them to cool before serving. Drizzle some chocolate over and dust the pies generously with powdered sugar and enjoy!