BECKY LUIGART-STAYNER
Recipe from Cooking Light

Comice pears work best, but almost any variety can be used. Toasting the walnuts imparts a deep nutty flavor that contrasts with the maple syrup.

Ingredients

  • Pastry:
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour, divided
  • 1/3 cup ice water
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 3 tablespoons chilled stick margarine or butter
  • 3 tablespoons vegetable shortening
  • Filling:
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 1/3 cup chopped walnuts, toasted
  • 3 tablespoons cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon lemon juice
  • 4 large Comice pears (about 3 pounds), peeled, cored, and cut lengthwise into 1/2-inch-thick slices
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Cooking spray
  • 2 teaspoons water
  • 1 large egg

Preparation

  1. Preheat oven to 450°.
  2. To prepare pastry, lightly spoon flour into dry measuring cups; level with a knife. Combine 1/3 cup flour and ice water, stirring with a whisk until well-blended. Combine 1 2/3 cups flour and salt in a bowl; cut in margarine and shortening with a pastry blender or 2 knives until mixture resembles coarse meal. Add ice water mixture; toss with a fork until moist. Divide dough in half. Gently press each half of dough into a 4-inch circle on heavy-duty plastic wrap; cover with additional plastic wrap. Roll one half of dough, still covered, into an 12-inch circle; freeze 10 minutes. Roll other half of dough, still covered, into an 11-inch circle; freeze 10 minutes.
  3. To prepare filling, combine brown sugar, walnuts, and cornstarch in a large bowl. Combine lemon juice and pears in a medium bowl, and stir in syrup and vanilla. Stir pear mixture into sugar mixture. Remove 1 sheet of plastic wrap from the 12-inch circle, and fit dough into a 9-inch pie plate coated with cooking spray, allowing dough to extend over edge of plate. Remove top sheet of plastic wrap. Combine 2 teaspoons water and egg in a small bowl, and stir well with a whisk. Spoon pear mixture into prepared crust, and brush edges of piecrust lightly with egg mixture. Remove 1 sheet of plastic wrap from the 11-inch circle, and place on top of pear mixture. Remove top sheet of plastic wrap. Press edges of dough together; fold edges under, and flute.
  4. Brush top and edges of pie with egg mixture. Place pie on a baking sheet; cut 5 (1-inch) slits into top of pastry using a sharp knife. Bake at 450° for 15 minutes. Reduce oven temperature to 350° (do not remove pie from oven); bake an additional 45 minutes or until browned. Cool on a wire rack 30 minutes. Serve warm or at room temperature.

December 1998

Nutritional Information

  • Calories: 290
  • Calories from fat: 31%
  • Fat: 10g
  • Saturated fat: 1g
  • Monounsaturated fat: 2.3g
  • Polyunsaturated fat: 2.8g
  • Protein: 4.6g
  • Carbohydrate: 46.9g
  • Fiber: 3.1g
  • Cholesterol: 22mg
  • Iron: 1.8mg
  • Sodium: 168mg
  • Calcium: 30mg