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Flavorful pie a perfect pear for holidays

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It wouldn’t be a Thanksgiving feast without several options for dessert.

My dinner table will be stuffed with a variety of foods on Thursday as my family and a few friends gather to celebrate the holiday.

While there are always a few last-minute additions or subtractions to the menu, there’s always plenty of pie.

This one blends apples and pears and bakes quickly with a prepared crust. I buy frozen piecrusts in pans for the bottoms and use refrigerated crusts for the tops so I always have enough dishes to serve from.

And empty tins make great ways to send leftovers home with my guests.

APPLE AND PEAR PIE

Serves: 12

Crust for double-crust pie

1 beaten egg white

½ cup raisins

2 tablespoons fresh lemon juice

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

5 tablespoons unsalted butter, divided

1¼ pounds Granny Smith apples, peeled, cored, cut into 1/3-inch-thick wedges

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon ground nutmeg

1 pound firm but ripe Bartlett or Anjou pears, peeled, cored, cut into 1/3-inch-thick wedges

2 tablespoons cornstarch

¾ cup packed light brown sugar

¼ cup light corn syrup

¼ cup half-and-half or heavy whipping cream

¾ cup coarsely chopped lightly toasted walnuts or pecans

Preheat the oven to 375 degrees. Roll out half the dough and fit into a 10-inch pie plate. Brush the bottom with the egg white and refrigerate.

Mix raisins, fresh lemon juice and vanilla extract in large bowl. Let mixture stand 15 minutes.

Cook 3 tablespoons unsalted butter in heavy large skillet over medium heat until pale golden, about 3 minutes. Add apple wedges, ground cinnamon and ground nutmeg. Sauté until apple wedges are crisp-tender, about 12 minutes. Add apple mixture, pear wedges and cornstarch to currant mixture; toss to coat.

Mix light brown sugar, corn syrup, whipping cream and remaining 2 tablespoons unsalted butter in heavy small saucepan. Boil over medium-high heat until slightly thickened, stirring until sugar dissolves, about 5 minutes. Stir in chopped walnuts. Add to fruit mixture. Toss to coat.

Transfer warm filling to prepared crust. Roll out the top crust and place on top. Cut slits in the top so the pie can vent. Bake 30 minutes. Reduce temperature to 350 degrees and bake until apples and pears are tender and liquid bubbles thickly, about 30 minutes longer.

Cool pie on rack. Serve warm or at room temperature.

Adapted from epicurious.com.

Contact M. Clare Haefner at chaefner@kdhnews.com or (254) 501-7551.

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