The combination of pears and cranberries makes a sweet-tart, rosy filling for a great holiday treat. Use D'Anjou pears for this recipe if you can find them — they have a somewhat floral, sweet flavor and firm, smooth texture that works perfectly.
All-Butter Pie Crust
- 2 3/4 cups unbleached, all-purpose flour Add to list
- 3 tablespoons sugar Add to list
- 1 teaspoon salt Add to list
- 8 tablespoons unsalted butter, chilled Add to list
- 3 tablespoons frozen apple juice concentrate Add to list
- 2 tablespoons chilled water Add to list
- 3 1/2 cups peeled, cored and thinly sliced D'Anjou pears Add to list
- 1 tablespoon butter Add to list
- 1/2 cup sugar, or more to taste Add to list
- 1/2 cup cranberries Add to list
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon Add to list
- 1/2 teaspoon ground allspice Add to list
- 1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom Add to list
- 1/4 teaspoon salt Add to list
- 1/2 teaspoon finely minced orange zest Add to list
- 1 tablespoon flour Add to list
- 1 large egg white, lightly beaten Add to list
- 2 tablespoons coarse sugar Add to list
All-Butter Pie Crust
In a food processor, combine flour, sugar and salt; pulse to mix. Transfer dry ingredients to a mixing bowl and refrigerate for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, allow 4 tablespoons butter to come to room temperature. Cut remaining 4 tablespoons butter into very small pieces and return to the refrigerator. Return dry ingredients to the food processor and add room temperature butter, pulsing until butter is completely incorporated and no longer visible. Add remaining chilled pieces of butter and pulse until mixture resembles peas. Return to the mixing bowl and refrigerate for a few minutes.
Combine frozen apple juice concentrate and chilled water in a spray bottle. Spritz dough with apple juice mixture, folding it in with a large, rubber spatula. After you've used about 3 tablespoons liquid, check dough for consistency by squeezing it in your hands. It should hold together when squeezed, but remain relatively dry to the touch. If necessary, spritz with a little more liquid, folding with the spatula. Form dough into a ball and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 30 minutes, or until filling is ready.
Sauté pears in butter over medium until soft and golden and juices have mostly evaporated, about 10 minutes. Add sugar, cranberries, spices and salt and cook another 5 minutes. Stir in orange zest and flour and cool to room temperature. Taste and add sugar, if desired.
Preheat oven to 400° F and place the rack in the lowest position.
Roll dough between two pieces of lightly floured parchment paper to a 1/8-inch-thick disk, about 14 inches in diameter. Cut into 5 to 6 inch disks. Mound filling on 1/2 of each disk, leaving a 1-inch border. Moisten the border of disk, if necessary, with water and fold in half to cover fruit. Press edges of the turnover together firmly and fold up over itself to seal completely in a double layer. Cut remaining dough into decorative leaves, if desired, and place around the edge. Cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. Repeat with remaining turnovers.
Uncover turnovers, brush with egg white and sprinkle with coarse sugar. Cut three steam vents in the top of each turnover and arrange on a foil-lined baking sheet, preferably an air-bake sheet. Bake for 20 to 30 minutes, until crust is golden and fruit is bubbling out the top of the vents.