Apple and Pear Pie with Pecans and Ginger!

This recipe is tested and tried so I have faith that it will work out for you! It’s an adaptation of a classic recipe from Cook’s Illustrated. The unique thing about this dough is the addition of vodka. I was told that it helps prevent the gluten from developing as much, so the dough becomes more pliable and forgiving. That being said, there isn’t too much vodka in it. I’ve used this dough for peach pie, blueberry pie, apple pies and now this apple/pear combo.

Let’s get started!

Here’s what you’ll need for the recipe:

Pie Dough:

300 grams of all purpose flour
1 teaspoon of salt
170 grams of butter cut into 1″ pieces, kept cold
65 grams of cold shortening, cut into 4 pieces
1/4 cup of ice cold vodka
1/4 cup of ice cold water

The filling:

3 apples, peeled
3 pears, peeled
4 tablespoons of flour
2.5 tablespoons of lemon juice
1 tablespoon of cinnamon
1 tsp powdered ginger and/or a small knob of fresh ginger, microplaned
2 tablespoons of butter
1/2 cup of sugar

Egg wash:

1 egg yolk for the top of the crust with a bit of water or milk
Save the egg white, for brushing the inside of the bottom layer before putting the fruit!

Garnishes:

Sugar
Pecans
Ginger
Powdered Sugar

1) Peel your apples and pears and cut them into equal size slices, approximately 1/4″ thick, half- moons.
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2) Toss the apples and pears in the lemon juice to prevent browning. Disperse the sugar evenly over the top of the slices with the cinnamon and ginger. After mixed, put the fruit in a colander over another bowl to let the juices drain.IMG_6838
3) After 10 minutes of letting the juices drain from the apples, mix your flour with the juice until thoroughly combined into a thick sauce-like consistency.IMG_6841
4) Put a pot on the stove on medium heat and add the butter. Once melted, add the fruit and stir quickly. Add the juice and flour mixture and stir until it coats all the fruit. Take off the stove.IMG_6843

5) Add your flour and salt together in a bowl and mix.

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6) Add half your flour and around a 1/3 the amount of your cold butter in the food processor.IMG_6848

7) Pulse in your food processor until you achieve an almond meal-like texture.

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8) Add the rest of your flour mixture, cold butter and cold shortening.

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9) Pulse until your dough creates pea-sized clumps.

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10) Add your ice-cold water and vodka to the dough in a bowl and combine with a wooden spoon.

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11) Once the dough has come together, put it onto a floured surface. Divide the dough into two pieces, with one just slightly larger than the other. (The larger will be the base of the pie, smaller will be the top to seal it.)

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12) Flatten each piece roughly and wrap in plastic wrap. Put in the fridge for 30 minutes or in the freezer for 10 minutes. Roll out the dough to fit your pie pan. I use a 9-inch pan.

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13) Dock the crust with a fork and brush the inside of the pie with a whisked egg white. This will help prevent the crust from getting too soggy from the filling.

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14) Fill the pie just to the rim of your pan.  Preheat your oven to 425F. I use a pizza stone, so you need to preheat it gradually so make sure it is in there when you are preheating.

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15) Roll out the smaller piece of dough and lay over top. You can even use the leftover egg white to go around the rim of the tin to give the top piece something to stick to. Use the egg yolk wash with milk or water, brush it on the top of the pie. Add chopped pecans (optional) and dust with granulated sugar.

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16) Cut some vents in the dough to allow the steam to escape.

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17) You can make any design you like for the edges or cut-outs, but this is how I pinched the crust for this particular pie.IMG_6891
18) Bake the pie in the middle rack on the pizza stone at 425F for 20 minutes. Then lower the temperature to 375F and bake for another 35 minutes or until you are happy with the colour of the crust.  Cool the pie for at least an hour. Dust with icing sugar and serve with fresh whipped cream or ice cream. Enjoy! IMG_6894

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