Pear and cranberries are not two fruits you might typically put together, but this pear cranberry pie was quite delicious. As you might have guessed, this was Ginny’s creation. It’s best for me to leave the baking up to her.
We added this pear cranberry pie to the dessert table at Thanksgiving and it was well received. Being on the dessert table means stiff competition. The other pies included pecan, chocolate and buttermilk, all made from scratch by my mom and aunt. They are both excellent bakers.
The trick for getting a good fruit texture is to find ripe pears and cook them down a bit with the cranberries before adding them to the filling. A pear is ripe when you can press it on the side and it has just a little bit of give. If they are too green, they will not break down properly and if too ripe, they tend to be mushy.
Ginny added a generous amount of port to the fruit mixture, which gives it a rich flavor. She had to convince me that it was worthwhile to use it in the pie because I really love drinking port and it’s hard to find in our area.
True confession…these cranberries were leftovers from cranberry sauce made at Thanksgiving. Fortunately for them, Ginny is great at creating delicious baked goods with items we have around the house. I think she should teach baking classes.
This recipe uses a small amount of sugar so I can justify eating it even when trying to stick to a Paleo diet. If you wanted to go sugar free, you could use Stevia for the sweetener. I would highly recommend making some whipped cream to put on top of this pie.
PREP TIME: 15 minutes COOK TIME: 45 minutes SERVINGS: 6
- 5 pears, sliced into thin pieces about 1/4 inch thick
- 1 cup cranberries
- 1 cup port
- 1/2 cup dry red wine
- 1/4 tsp nutmeg
- 1 tsp cinnamon
- 1/2 tsp cardamom
- 1/2 tsp almond extract
- 1/2 cup brown sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 Tbsp. white sugar for sprinkling on top
- 2 prepared crusts
- Add port, red wine, nutmeg, cinnamon, almond extract and brown sugar into a saucepan and simmer over low heat until sugar dissolves.
- Add pears and cranberries to pan and simmer until pears are soft – about 10 minutes.
- Heat oven to 350 degrees. Pre-bake crust in oven for 10 minutes. Remove from oven and add filling.
- Use cookie cutters to cut out pieces from the top crust and arrange them in patterns on top of filling. Beat one egg in a bowl and brush egg wash on top crust pieces so they will brown. Bake pie for 30 minutes at 350. Remove from oven and sprinkle white sugar on top.