For the Pasty Crust:
2-1/2 cups flour plus more for dusting your work surface
2 t-spoons sugar
1/2 t-spoon kosher salt
12 tablespoons butter cut into 1/2" cubes (3/4 cup)
4 tablespoons vegetable shortening cut into 1/2" cubes (1/4 cup)
1/4 t-spoon ground cinnamon
8 - 10 tablespoons cold water
1-1/2 t-spoons vinegar white or applie cider
1 egg (for egg wash)
1 t-spoon water (for egg wash)
turbinado sugar for topping the pies
For the Pie Filling:
2 pounds Asian pears peeled, cored, and quartered (3 - 4 Asian pears)
3 tablespoons sugar
2 tablespoons brown sugar
2-1/2 tablespoons flour
heaping 3/4 t-spoon ground ginger
heaping 1/2 t-spoon ground cardamom
1/4 t-spoon orange zest
2 t-spoon orange juice freshly squeezed
1 t-spoon lemon juice freshly squeezed
Small pinch kosher salt
Cube the butter and shortening, move the little fat cubes to a plate and stash in the freezer for at least 1 hour to chill.
Start by making the crust: Put the flour, salt, and sugar in a food processor and pulse a few times to incorporate and aerate the flour a bit. Drop in the butter and shortening, and pulse about 10 times, until the mix resembles wet sand and most of the butter is cut down to the size of peas (though don’t worry if some pieces are larger). Mix the water and vinegar in a small liquid measuring cup and, with the processor running now, pour in the water. You want it to be just moist enough to hold together. Turn it out onto a lightly floured surface, form it into a ball, roll into a disc, and cover tightly with plastic wrap before stashing in the fridge for at least 1 hour, but up to 3 days.
Preheat the oven to 375°
Once the crust has had its time to chill, start on the pie filling. Dice the prepared pears. I like to do a mix of small and large dice, by which I mean that I dice roughly half the fruit into 1/2" cubes, and the rest a scant 1/4"; this way, when baked, some pieces get completely soft while others retain a little crunch.
Tumble the fruit into a bowl and add in the remaining ingredients and toss everything together until combined.
Divide the dough in half and dust your work surface with a little flour. Shape the dough into a rough rectangle. Roll this out to about 10" x 12"--about 1/3" thick. Cut the dough into 4 equal rectangles. Do the same for the other half of the the dough.
Line two baking sheets with parchment paper and transfer 4 pieces of the prepared dough to each baking sheet. Fill the rectangles with the pear filling (about 3 tablespoons per pie) and fold each one over in half. Crimp the edges with a fork to seal.
Beat the egg and water in a bowl until totally combined. Brush the pies with the egg wash, cut 3 venting slits in the top, sprinkle with turbinado sugar and bake for 30 - 35 minutes, until golden brown and piping hot. Remove to a wire cooling wrack and allow to cool for at least 10 minutes before serving.
Serve warm or room temperature.
Odds are you'll have a little of the pear mixture left over--either heat it in a small sauce pan and let it simmer for a few minutes to cook out the raw flour taste, using this as a topping for oatmeal or something, or fill a small ramekin with it, top it with any remaining scraps of crust you have and bake off for a solitary late night treat later.
The dough can be made up to 3 days in advance. The filling should be made at the last minute, or close to, to avoid the pears letting out too much liquid. You can bake the pies a little in advance but don't put them in an air-tight container or the crust will get soggy.
| Adapted from I Ate The Whole Thing