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Super-Easy Mini Apple Pies (Crostatas)

Every year, my sister and brother-in-law take the children apple-picking during the month of September.  They always return with a nice supply of apples and even a few pears.  This year, we were given Fuji apples for baking and some other varieties for eating.  Although I enjoy baking, I only bake a pie once a year.  It is too much work compared to cake, cookies, and brownies.  Luckily, I can usually convince my husband to core and peel (and sometimes even  slice) the apples for me.  He is a huge fan of apple pie.

This year, instead of using the same old recipe, I searched Pinterest for an alternative easy apple pie recipe.  I finally came upon one by Pillsbury for Mini Apple Crostatas.  It looked tasty, so I gave it a whirl. I must say that I was very pleased with the results and so was my family.  Even our 8 year, who claimed that he did not like apple pie, admitted that it was delicious.  The only thing I did differently was to cute the refrigerated pie crust into quarters rather than cut circles out of them.  I thought my mini pies would come out triangular in shape, but they turned out round anyways and I didn't waste any of the crust.

(Click photo to enlarge)

If you try this recipe, you should know it is for making 4 mini pies with one pie crust.  I doubled the recipe to use both pie crusts.  Also, my baking time was 3 or 4 minutes less than the time suggested, so you may want to set your timer for less time and keep a close eye on the crust to prevent burning.  This recipe was so easy that our 8 year old son was able to help cut the pie crust into quarters and to spoon in the apple filling.  Even if you do not consider yourself a baker, if he can do it, so can you!

NOTE:  Just wanted to add that, for the caramel sauce, I used Smucker's Caramel Sundae Syrup.  It worked out perfectly and was not too sweet, even with vanilla ice cream added on top.