We’re one day away from our 1 year anniversary here at BAKED and I made you guys a celebratory pie! Can you believe that it took us a whole year to get a good ol’fashioned lattice up on here?
I recently picked some pears from a neighbourhood tree with Not Far From the Tree (Toronto peeps, check them out!) and it was no ordinary pick. Our gang picked over 350lbs from one tree in less than two hours and I got to take home almost 30lbs of these sweet little pears to eat and make pie with.
This pie is a rustic treat, with it’s cracking crust, oozing fruit, lots of patch work, and a final result that asked not to be photographed after being sliced. Aesthetics aside, it was a joy to eat warm, with a scoop of ice cream.
Chocolate Buckwheat Pear Pie
Chocolate Buckwheat Pie Crust (see notes for scaling recommendation)
½ cup of butter
½ cup buckwheat flour
¼ cup cacao powder
½ cup light spelt or unbleached all-purpose flour + more for rolling the dough
2 Tbsp. coconut sugar
½ tsp. salt
2 – 4 Tbsp. ice water
3 lbs of ripe but firm pears (see notes for pear varieties)
2 Tbsp. butter
⅓ cup of maple syrup
2 Tbsp. lemon juice
1 tsp. vanilla extract
Cut the butter into small cubes and place in the freezer for at least 15 minutes while you prepare the pears.
Core and quarter the pears. Melt the butter in a large saucepan, add maple syrup and pears, then bring to a simmer over medium heat. Once simmering, lower heat to medium-low, cover pot, and cook for about 15 minutes, until the pears are soft, stirring every few minutes to prevent scorching.
While the pears are cooking, add all the dry pie ingredients (flours, cacao, sugar, and salt) to the food processor and pulse to combine. Add frozen butter cubes and pulse until crumbly. With the food processor on, slowly add ice water, 1 Tbsp. at a time, until a dough mass just starts to form. Give it a few seconds between each addition, as it sometimes takes a little while to come together and go slow after 2 Tbsp., it shouldn’t take much more than that. Once the dough starts coming together, stop the food processor and empty it out on a floured surface. The dough should still be crumbly but hold together when squeezed with your hand. Knead it together until a smooth ball forms. Cut it into two pieces, one slightly larger than the other, wrap in plastic and refrigerate while finishing the pear filling.
Once the pears are cooked, remove them from the liquid with a slotted spoon. Increase the heat to medium and continue simmering the liquid until it thickens and resemble a syrup. Once thickened, add the pears back to the pot along with lemon juice and vanilla and toss everything together. Set aside to cool.
Preheat the oven to 375°F.
Starting with the larger dough ball, roll it out on a well-floured surface until it’s large enough to cover a 9” pie dish. Gently fold the crust over in half, slide in the pie dish, and unfold it to fit into the dish. Don’t worry if it breaks or cracks, it patches back together quite easily.
Pour the filling into the crust lined dish and arrange the pears evenly.
Roll out the smaller dough ball, until it’s about 10 inches in diameter, then slice into 10 strips. Starting with the longest strips in the middle, start arranging them in a lattice on top of the pie (see notes for step-by-step link). Trim any excess dough and pinch around the edge to hold the dough together.
Bake for about 45 minutes until the crust is cooked through.
Cool slightly before digging in.
– The crust recipe makes *just* enough for a 9” pie dish that is 1” deep. If you’re using a slightly bigger pie dish or would like a little more wiggle room with the crust, I suggest scaling up a little bit (i.e. ¾ cup each of butter and flours, 6Tbsp. cacao, ¾ tsp. of salt, 3 Tbsp. of sugar, and 3 – 6 Tbsp. of water)
– Results may vary depending on the variety of pears used. I don’t know the name of mine, but they resembled firm Anjou pears. I imagine that the pie would be even more delicious with ripe Bosc or Bartlett pears, as those are better for baking, but I have yet to try them in this recipe. If you’re using larger pears, remember to cut them accordingly.