Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Concord Grape & Pear Pie

Our latest CSA pickup included some concord grapes, which I decided to turn into a pie. I thought about jelly, but then figured... I have some pears, and a dinner party to go to... so... why not pie?

The process has a few extra steps, but it's well worth it!!

1 1/2 cups pastry flour
1 tsp salt
1 stick unsalted butter (softened)
5-6 tablespoons ice water

Combine flour & salt with a whisk. Add in butter and combine with a fork until crumbly. Drizzle water and shape into a ball. Refrigerate in Saran wrap for 30 minutes. Preheat oven to 400 degrees. (My oven runs HOT. Some folks do this @ 425)

5-6 bunches concord grapes*
4 pears
3/4 cup sugar
1/4 tsp salt
2 1/2 tblsp cornstarch
squeeze lemon juice
Generous Sprinkle of Cinnamon

*First, separate the skins off the grapes. A light squeeze at the end opposite of the stem should be enough to pop out the pulp. Keep each in a separate bowl. Heat the pulps in a small pot, until boiling, for about 5 minutes. Then, mash in a strainer to remove the seeds. Combine the mashed pulps with the skins.

Add in the pears, and then add the sugar, cornstarch, salt, and lemon to this mixture, let sit in the fridge for about 10 minutes.

Roll out dough, add filling to center, and top with dollops of butter. Then complete with lattice crust. Bake @ 400 for 20-30 minutes, checking crust for burning. Some folks brush butter or milk on top of the crust, this works too. Then turn down to 325 degrees for an additional 30 minutes. Basically, over an hour, let the pie cook, and turn down the oven when the crust burns at that degree. This is an art and not a science, and so I suggest checking the pie about every ten minutes!

Serve with ice cream or whipped cream, and garnish with sprigs of mint!!

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