Recipe // Vanilla Bean Pear Pie

Recently, USA Pears reached out to me and asked if I’d like to receive some complimentary pears to use in a recipe and I immediately jumped at the chance. You see, since Cameron and I first started dating, he has been begging asking me to make him a pear pie. I was never a huge pear fan myself, and so all these years I never got around to making one for him. However, I knew that this would be the perfect opportunity to finally make him this long awaited pear pie!

I received a beautiful box of six Green Anjou pears and was excited to get started!

I stumbled across this recipe and thought it sounded perfect, so decided to go for it! First, I started out by making a pie crust using this recipe from the same blog. It’s a great all-purpose crust recipe:
Perfect All-Butter Pie Crust
Recipe Source: Food For My Family
2 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
1 tablespoon sugar (omit for savory filling)
1 teaspoon salt
1 cup (2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
4-6 tablespoons ice cold water

In a cold, large bowl, mix together flour, salt and sugar. Add in butter pieces and cut into the flour using a pastry blender or the tines of a fork until the crumbs range in size from small to pea-sized.
Sprinkle 2 tablespoons of water over the dough and fold in quickly. Continue folding in one tablespoon of water at a time until the flour and crumbs are just moistened and start sticking together in larger clumps. (Note: You may not use all of the water to achieve this.) Use your hands to pull the dough together and form two equal discs. Wrap in parchment or plastic wrap and let it rest in the refrigerator for at least an hour.

Roll the dough out on a lightly floured surface and transfer to your pie plate. Bake according to your recipe directions.

Then it was time to make the pear pie!
Cam had to take a picture because he couldn’t believe it was finally happening after all these years 😉
Buttermilk Custard Pear Pie
Recipe Source: Food For My Family
Pie dough for one 9″ crust
1 egg + 1 tablespoon water, beaten, optional (for the crust)
5 cups peeled and thinly sliced just-ripe pears (4-5 medium)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 large vanilla bean, scraped
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 425° F. Roll out pie crust and fit into a 9″ pie plate. Place in the refrigerator to chill for 10 minutes. Brush the edges of the crust lightly with the beaten egg.

Arrange slices of pear over the crust just to the top edge, leaving a slight lip for the custard and fruit to expand during cooking.

In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, vanilla bean seeds and salt. Add in eggs, buttermilk and melted butter and whisk until smooth.

Pour the custard mix over the pears.

Bake at 425° F for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350° F and continue baking for 45-55 minutes until custard is set and the pie is firm in the center. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly.

Serve warm. Makes 8-10 slices of pie.
I think the flecks of vanilla bean in the custard really complimented the pears nicely, and overall, Cameron and I both loved the pie, however, it was definitely on the less sweet side as far as desserts go, which can be a good or bad thing depending on personal preference. Because of the eggs in the custard, a slice of this pie would actually be perfect for breakfast, almost like a sweet quiche! We really enjoyed it though, and I was happy that Cameron finally got his pear pie after all these years 🙂

Oh and it turns out, I actually do like pears! I enjoyed snacking on the slices while making the pie, along with eating them in the finished product – they’re delicious! Who knew? 🙂
(Thanks again to USA Pears!)