I love a pear pie, especially when it’s sweetened with maple syrup. This double-crust pie, a fall favorite, gets a double dose of maple—once in the filling, and again in the Maple Confectioners’ Sugar Glaze that’s drizzled on top. Use pears that yield to gentle thumb pressure. My preference is for yellow Bartlett pears, but I’ve used others with success. The glaze is also delicious spooned over quick breads, and is especially good on baked goods made with pumpkin or sweet potatoes.
In a food processor, combine the flour, confectioners’ sugar, and salt. Pulse several times, to mix. Scatter the butter over the flour mixture, then pulse until it is broken into small pieces no larger than lentils, about 10 times.
Stream the water through the feed tube, pulsing as you add it. When all the water is added, continue to pulse, just until the dough starts to form clumps (the dough should not ball up around the blade).
Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured work surface, and form a mound. Divide the dough almost in half, making one half—for the bottom crust—a little larger. Form each half into a ball, kneading once or twice to smooth the dough. Flatten the balls into disks about 3/4 inch thick, and wrap with plastic wrap. (Note which disk is the bottom.) Refrigerate for at least 1 hour before using. (Makes enough dough for one 9×91/2-inch double crust pie.)
Roll the larger dough half into a circle about 12-1/2 inches in diameter. Ease the pastry into a 9-inch deep-dish pie pan, and let the excess pastry hang over the edge. Cover loosely with plastic wrap, and refrigerate.
Position oven racks so one is in the lowest position, and the other is in the middle. Preheat the oven to 400°F.
In a large bowl, combine the pears and maple syrup. In a small bowl, mix the cornstarch, sugar, and salt. Add the ginger, cinnamon, lemon juice, and lemon zest, and stir well.
Roll the other dough half into a circle about 11 inches in diameter. Moisten the rim of the chilled bottom pastry with a pastry brush. Spoon the pear filling into the shell, and smooth the top, so no fruit sticks up. Place the top pastry on the filling, and press the edge to seal.
Use a paring knife to trim the pastry even with the edge of the pan, then crimp the edge with the tines of a fork. Or, press the top and bottom pastry together, fold the to pastry under, and flute as desired. Lightly brush the top pastry with the beaten egg mixture. Use a paring knife to cut several steam vents in the top, twisting the knife to expand the holes a little.
Place the pie on the bottom rack, and bake for 30 minutes. Reduce the temperature to 375°F. Carefully transfer the pie to a baking sheet, and move to the center rack, rotating front to back. Bake until the crust is golden brown and thick juice bubbles through the steam vents, 30 to 40 minutes.
Transfer the pie to a wire rack to cool completely. Drizzle with Maple Confectioners’ Sugar Glaze.
In a small saucepan, heat the butter and maple syrup over medium-low heat until the butter is melted, then add the confectioners’ sugar, and whisk until smooth. Let cool 1 minute, then use a spoon to drizzle over the pie. If the glaze starts to set or becomes too thick for drizzling, warm it briefly over very low heat. Store any leftover glaze in a covered bowl for 1 week.
I don’t see anywhere how much water to add for the crust - kind of important detail...
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