Happy Pi Day! On this 14th of March, we celebrate both the unending joy that is the number pi and one of our member’s birthdays – Colin Kyle. Colin typically celebrates by baking a pie on Pi Day and this year he’s sharing his family’s pear pie recipe.
Hope you enjoy!
Recipe and Instructions for Colin’s Pi Day Pear Pie:
Colin’s Crust (you can use any crust you like, store-bought is fine):
-1 stick of unsalted butter (4oz)
-1/2 cup of whole wheat flour
-1 tbs of brown sugar
-1 tspn of salt
-1/4 cup of very cold water
– 6 medium pears
-1/2 cup each of brown and white sugar
-juice of 1 lemon
-zest of 1 lemon
-2 tbs of whole wheat flour
-1/2 cup of brown sugar
-2 tbs of whole wheat flour
-grated ginger (or ground)
-For crust: add butter, flour, sugar, and salt in a bowl. Cut butter into dry ingredients and mix until butter forms pea-sized clumps. Then, gradually add the cold water and mix with hands until the ingredients hold together into a dough – try to keep the dough from being runny. Then, wrap the ball with plastic-wrap and flatten into a disk-shape before chilling for >2 hours.
-For filling: core pears and cut into 1/2in cubes. Add all other filling ingredients to the pear pieces and stir until the pears are evenly coated. You can prepare the filling and set it aside to marinate up to over-night if you’d like.
-For topping: combine all ingredients in a bowl. Cut butter into dry ingredients and mix until butter forms pea-sized clumps.
-Assembly: Preheat your oven to 375F. Then, coat your chilled crust in flour and roll out to 1/3in thick. Carefully place your crust in a greased pie dish and form into place. Pile your filling into the crust, including all juice in the bowl. Evenly sprinkle the topping over the filling.
-Place the pie on a baking sheet with parchment paper or foil (be ware of molten brown sugar) and bake at 375F for 45-60 minutes. Rotate the pie halfway through baking and take out when the top looks caramelized and the crust turns a darker shade of brown. Let the pie rest and cool to set for at least 2 hours, or over night.
Video Walk-through by Colin from Sugar Gamers:
Transcript from the video:
“Hello, everyone, this is Colin Kyle from Sugar Gamers! Normally I talk with you guys about game design and ecology and solarpunk and things like that but today I’m gonna be talking to you about baking – a different kind of science. It’s my birthday and it’s Pi Day, so I’m gonna make my family pie recipe, which is pear pie. My grandparents had a pear tree in their yard so my grandmother would make this, and my mum would make this. It’s very cute and it’s tasty. So, more info to come and check out the recipe and hopefully make it for yourself and say hi to my orchids.
All right, here the ingredients for the pie filling. Got our pears. Recipe calls for six – I shoot for about eight. Let them ripen up and get a little little brown on you – the softer and the juicier the better, that makes for a richer pie. Lemon juice, lemon zest, salt, a healthy amount of cinnamon, brown sugar, and then wheat flour. I use whole wheat instead of white flour because it is a little bit nuttier it helps things hold up and set a little firmer. That’s what I use.
So the easiest way to deal with to breakdown pair for this pie is to just cut in half. And then, if the pears are ripe enough, you can just use a spoon actually to just scoop out the inside. Toss the insides in a bowl and scoop it out. You can even use your spoon to just take out the stem. There we go – half a pear. Cut that up a little bit. Then do the other side. Just a little scoop to get that core out, which saves a lot of, almost all, the fruit. It’s very simple, you can even do the bottom stem – you gotta do the bottom. Simple. there we go, you’ll end up with a pile of pears.
Alright, before we roll out our pie crust, we’re going to do our crumble topping, it’s like a streusel topping. We do that with the whole wheat flour, brown sugar, butter, some grated ginger, plenty of cinnamon, and a little bit of salt. Toss it all little bowl and chop up the butter so that it’s little pea size chunks.
So, we’ve got our crumble topping prepped. You wanna leave the chunks of butter in here a good size that you can clearly see. Those are the parts that melt to form the crunchy, little, crusty bits on our streusel topping.
Alright, it just came out of the oven. It’s been there for about an hour, I gave it some extra time ’cause it’s nice and thick. You can see that the edge of the pie crust has browned up a little bit nicely. You can see some spots that are a little dark, which is a good indication. We got some nice pear goo going on in there too – that’s technical term. We’ll let this cool for a little while it sets. It’s really best probably tomorrow, but maybe I’ll steal a slice tonight.
We have got our complete pear pie here. It has been chilled and sliced and I’m excited it’s gonna be my breakfast. Happy Pi Day everybody! I’m gonna pair it with some coffee. It’s good to chill it, you can see already it’s a pretty soupy pie. Once pears get cooked they’re actually really juicy. And when we pair it with a lemon, the acid helps bring that juice out, along with the sugar and that little bit of salt. So I hope you try this recipe and enjoy your pie. Today I’m pairing it with coffee to get my day rolling. Yeah, the lemon makes it really pop. The whole wheat crust kind of stands up with it to make it a nice, full experience. Because again it’s so soupy, you want something that’ll stand up to that kind of stuff as opposed to just kind of get squishy and sad, so that’s why I like that – the brown sugar and the whole wheat goes a long way to hold things together.
Thank you very much for watching and happy Pi Day! I hope you give it a try. You do not have to let it chill overnight, like I did – just a couple hours or something like that at most. It’s gonna come out hot but, as you saw, it’s very juicy. So, if you cut it right away, it’s gonna all like melt together. If you are fine with that, then go for it. But yes, this is Colin from Sugar Gamers with my birthday pie day post, signing out from the orchids. I’ll catch you guys next time, thanks so much!”