My daughter Audrey is my mini-SMPer. She helps with photo shoots, recipes & cooking (check out these Whoopie Pies we made!) and her 5-year-old loveliness is a constant source of inspiration for posts. So of course, when I mentioned that I wanted to transform our recently acquired fruit into some homemade apple pie & strawberry jam pop tarts, well, you can probably guess who wanted to be involved.

Before we got started with all of our pop tart goodness, we sprayed our bounty with The Honest Company’s  Fruit + Veggie Wash. It’s become somewhat of a ritual around these parts and to say I’m a die-hard sprayer is a bit of an understatement. It’s my go to in the kitchen and it’s as pure and as simple as it gets. If you had chatted with me five years ago, it never would have occurred to me that the simple act of baking pop tarts could potentially involve chemical residues and terrifying bacteria. Oh how things change when you’re responsible for wee little lives…

When it comes to my family, I simply want to use natural, clean products that I can fully and wholeheartedly trust. And like most working moms, I don’t have a ton of time to read labels or do gobs of research.  But with The Honest Company, run by working parents themselves, I know that I don’t have to. They do all that not-so-fun background work for me.

Once we had our freshly washed fruit all whipped up and set to cool, we made our dough. We used Smitten Kitchen’s recipe for pie dough because it’s scrumptious, it’s reliable and it browns up beautifully. After chilling it for a bit we divided the dough in half then rolled out each half to about 1/8″ thick. I trimmed each rolled out half down to a 12″ x 8″ rectangle making sure to save the scraps for other fun projects.

We then measured the dough to 4″ x 3″ pieces and placed the first 8 pieces onto a parchment lined baking sheet. Next, Audrey scooped a heaping teaspoon of each filling onto the tarts. The girl has a bit of a heavy hand so I kept having to say things like “Look! There’s Elvis!” wherein I’d sneakily remove a little of her handiwork. Distraction tactics – genius.

After we filled those babies up, we placed the identical pie topper on each and used a fork to secure the edges. I might have taken over here because the perfectionist in me couldn’t bear the idea of uneven fork marks (I’m not ashamed). Then Audrey painted a very light coat of egg wash on them and I poked a few holes in the top to release the steam. We popped them in the oven and voila, homemade goodness. Made with simple, clean, delicious ingredients.

So there you have it. Cooking with Audrey. Not only a fun family adventure, it also makes for some pretty great recipes, some pretty cute pictures, and I can rest assured knowing that my family is taken care of.

STRAWBERRY FILLING————————————————————————————————–

1 pint strawberries, hulled and chopped (you’ll have leftovers…yum!)
2 TBS honey
1 tsp vanilla
1 tbs corn starch
1 tbs warm water

Combine strawberries, honey and vanilla in saucepan. Bring to gentle boil. Reduce to a low boil for 12 minutes until strawberries breakdown and reduce. Meanwhile, combine corn starch and warm water until smooth. Add corn starch mixture to strawberries and cook for 1 more minute. Remove from heat & let cool.

APPLE & BROWN SUGAR FILLING————————————————————————————

1 1/2 cups (about 3 medium apples) apples, chopped
1/3 cup brown sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
squeeze of 1/2 lemon
1 tbs corn starch
1tbs water

Combine apples, brown sugar, salt, cinnamon & lemon in saucepan. Bring to boil. Cook on a low boil for about 8-10 minutes until apples soften. Meanwhile, combine corn starch and water until smooth. When apples are done, add corn starch to mixture and cook 1 more minute. Remove from heat and let cool.

HOMEMADE POP-TARTS————————————————————————————————-

1 recipe for pie dough
1 cup filling (I used strawberry & apple above)
1 egg
1 tbs water
parchment paper

Make your dough and chill in fridge until ready to use. Preheat your oven to 375 and prep a baking sheet with parchment paper. Divide your dough in half. Roll out to about 1/8″ thickness (or just roll it out kind of thin). Using a ruler, cut your dough into 3″ x 4″ pieces. Place your pieces on your parchment covered baking sheet. Roll out your second piece of dough and cut to the same dimensions. Combine your egg & water. Brush a layer of egg wash over your first set of pop tarts. Add 1 heaping teaspoon of filling, then place a second piece of cut dough on top. Repeat with remaining tarts. Press your edges together using a fork and coat each tart with your egg wash. Bake for 20-25 minutes and cool.

ICING SUGAR HEARTS————————————————————————————————-

a small piece of wax paper
icing sugar
a sifter

Simply cut a  little heart out of some wax or parchment paper and hold it over your cooled pop tart. Using a sifter, sprinkle some sugar on top then slowly remove your paper revealing your heart beneath!

And now for the exciting bit! Style Me Pretty Living readers in the US and Canada can enjoy $10 off a $40 minimum purchase on their first Honest Company purchase using the code HonestlySMPL. This code applies to first purchases only, one per customer, expires September 22, 2013.

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