Pear & Cranberry Pie

Hello, and Happy belated New Year! I hope that someone out there has not felt the need to modify their diet as I have quite a few recipes to share from festivities at end of 2016. šŸ™‚ My kids have winter birthdays so we are still celebrating in my house!

This delicious pie was from our Thanksgiving feast. The recipe was adapted from Food and Wine, contributed by Justin Chapple. It was originally a slab pie but I modified the recipe to bake it in a “new” estate sale pie plate that had to be used. It was absolutely wonderful with vanilla ice cream.

Yield: one 10-inch double-crusted pie

  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 cup plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • coarseĀ salt
  • 2 sticks unsalted butter, cubed and chilled
  • 1/2 cup ice water
  • 5 firm Bartlett or Anjou pears peeled, cored and cut into 3/4-inch wedges
  • 1 1/2 cups frozen cranberries
  • 1 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1 large egg beaten with 1 tablespoon water
  • Turbinado sugar, for sprinkling
  • vanilla ice cream, for serving
  1. Day ahead: Freeze cleaned, fresh cranberries in a single layer on a plastic wrap-lined baking sheet.
  2. Make the Crust Dough: In a food processor, combine 2 1/2 cups of the flour with 1 tablespoon of the granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon of kosher salt and pulse to mix.
  3. Add the butter and pulse in 1-second bursts until the mixture resembles coarse meal.
  4. Drizzle the ice water over the mixture and pulse in 1-second bursts until the dough just comes together.
  5. Turn the dough out onto a work surface, gather any crumbs and pat into 2 rounds. Wrap the dough in plastic and refrigerate until chilled, about 45 minutes. (This can also be done a day in advance.)
  6. Preheat the oven to 425Ā°, preferably on convection.
  7. On a floured work surface or between sheets of plastic wrap, roll out 1 piece of the dough to a 13-inch round. Remove one side of plastic wrap and line the bottom of a 10-inch pie dish with the crust.
  8. Roll the second piece of dough into a 12-inch round; keep between sheets of plastic wrap. Place second crust on a cookie sheet.
  9. Refrigerate both crusts for 15 to 45 minutes.
  10. In a large bowl, toss the pears with the cranberries, ginger, 1/2 teaspoon of salt and the remaining 1/2 cup of granulated sugar and 1/4 cup of flour. Spread the fruit evenly inĀ the dough-lined pie dish.
  11. Cut the chilled, 12-inch round pie crust dough into strips to weave into a lattice. Form a lattice over the pie filling.
  12. Fold under the edge and crimp decoratively all around to seal.
  13. Freeze for 15 to 30 minutes.
  14. Brush the pie with the egg wash and sprinkle with turbinado sugar.
  15. Cover the edge of the pie with a crust shield.Ā Bake the pie for 15 minutes at 425 degrees and then lower the oven temperature to 375 degrees and continue to bake about 45 to 60 minutes, or until filling is bubbling, crust is golden, and the pears are tender; rotate halfway through baking. Let cool.
  16. Serve with vanilla ice cream, as desired.

Note: TheĀ pie can be stored at room temperature for up to 2 days.

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Vanilla Bean Apple-Pear Pie with Walnut Crust

This recipe requires the filling to be cooked prior to baking the pie- it is well worth the extra work. The pie filling is absolutely loaded with fruit as a result. The combination of pears and vanilla bean with the apples created a very special pie. The toasted walnuts in the crust were another wonderful addition.

This recipe was adapted from Martha Stewart Living.Ā  I modified the method. I may have to include it at part of the Thanksgiving meal next year.

2021 Update: I included this pie in our assortment of Thanksgiving desserts and it was the clear winner. It just may be my new favorite pie!

For the Crust:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, plus more
  • 1 1/2 ouncesĀ walnutsĀ , toasted and chopped (1/2 cup)
  • 1 tablespoon granulated sugar
  • 1 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2 sticks cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
  • 1/4 to 1/2 cup ice water (I used about 4 to 5 tablespoons)
For the Filling & To Finish:

Ā 

  • 5 to 6 Granny Smith apples (I used 6 medium apples)
  • 3 firm-ripe Bosc pears (I used 3 very large pears)
  • 1/4 teaspoon coarse salt
  • 2/3 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 whole vanilla bean, split and scraped
  • juice of 1/2 lemon (about 5 teaspoons)
  • 1/2 stick unsalted butter
  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • turbinado sugar or fine sanding sugar, for sprinkling

To Make the Crust:

  1. Place walnuts in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet and toast in a preheated 375 degree oven for about 5 minutes, or until lightly browned and fragrant. Set aside to cool.
  2. Pulse flour, toasted walnuts, granulated sugar, and salt in a food processor until walnuts are finely chopped.
  3. Add butter; pulse until mixture resembles coarse meal, 8 to 10 seconds.
  4. With the food processor running, drizzle in 4 tablespoons (1/4 cup) of ice water 1 tablespoon at a time. Add water until the mixture comes together when pressed in your hand (dough should not be wet or sticky). If dough is too dry, add more ice water, 1 tablespoon at a time, and pulse.
  5. Lay out 2 pieces of plastic wrap. Empty half the dough onto each piece. Bring edges of wrap together to gather dough. Press into disks.
  6. Roll out disks, still wrapped in plastic, to 1/2-inch-thick rounds (8 inches in diameter). Refrigerate at least 45 minutes and up to 2 days.
  7. Let stand at room temperature 5 to 10 minutes before rolling.
  8. Roll out 1 disk of dough into a 12-inch round (a generous 1/8-inch thickness) on a lightly floured surface. Fit into a 9-inch pie plate, and trim edge, leaving a 1-inch overhang. (I used a deep dish ceramic pie plate.)
  9. Roll out remaining disk of dough to a generous 1/8-inch thickness. Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet, and refrigerate, along with dough in pie plate, until firm, about 1 hour.

To Make the Filling & To Finish:

  1. Peel and core apples, and cut into eighths (you should have about 7 cups).
  2. Peel and core pears, and cut into eighths (you should have about 5 cups).
  3. In a large bowl, toss apple and pear slices with salt, granulated sugar, vanilla bean seeds and pod, and lemon juice.
  4. Melt butter in a large sautƩ pan over medium-high heat.
  5. Add fruit mixture, and cook, stirring, 10 minutes.
  6. Stir in flour, and cook 1 minute. Remove from heat; let filling cool completely. Remove vanilla bean pod.
  7. Preheat oven to 425 degrees, preferably on convection, with rack in lower third of oven.
  8. Pour filling into dough-lined pie plate, and brush edge of dough with some egg wash.
  9. Cut dough on baking sheet into strips. Weave dough strips into a lattice over filling, and press overhang onto edge of crust. Trim edge, fold under, and crimp as desired.
  10. Roll any trimmed pieces 1/4-inch thick to make leaf decorations, or others, if desired.
  11. Brush top of pie with more egg wash, then sprinkle with turbinado or sanding sugar. Freeze until firm, about 30 minutes. (I brushed the pie with egg wash after freezing.)
  12. Place the pie on a parchment paper-lined, rimmed baking sheet. Cover the edge of the pie with a shield and place a foil dome over the top of the entire pie to prevent over-browning.
  13. Bake pie 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 375 degrees, and bake until crust is golden and filling is bubbling through lattice, about 1 hour.
  14. Remove the dome and shield and continue to bake an additional 15 minutes, until golden brown.
  15. Let cool completely on a wire rack before serving or storing.

Note: Pie can be stored at room temperature 1 day.

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