Wanda’s Pie in the Sky bakery/shop/café on Augusta St. in Kensington Market has become a popular lunch spot with vegetarian offerings and Wanda’s famous pies. Creator, Wanda Beaver, has been at Feast of the Fields almost from the beginning, because she says, it’s “a mini-vacation. I really look forward to it — it’s nearly always beautiful and there’s fresh, wonderful produce. It’s a treat.”
Wanda shares with us her recipe for a wonderful Fall pie. This is what she says: The amazing color, fragrance, and mellow flavour of a perfectly ripe pear is the stuff of poetry. In this pie the intense tartness and vivid color of cranberries is a perfect match for the subtle sweetness and tender texture of pears. A hint of orange and a sweet crumbly streusel topping make this a perfect fall pie.
1 Recipe Double Crust Pastry
5 cups (1.2 L) peeled and cored pears, cut into 1-inch (2.5-cm) pieces
1 ½ cups (360 mL) cranberries
¾ cup (180 mL) granulated sugar
3 Tbsp. (45 mL) cornstarch
1 Tbsp. (15 mL) lemon juice
1 Tbsp. (15 mL) orange zest
1 egg beaten with 1 Tbsp. (15 mL) cold water
¼ cup (60 mL) butter, cut into ½-inch (1.2-cm) pieces
½ cup (120 mL) granulated sugar
½ cup (120 mL) all-purpose flour
Prepare the pastry as directed, setting aside the smaller disk. Preheat the oven to 400°F (200°C).
In a large bowl, combine the pears, cranberries, the ¾ cup (180 mL) sugar, cornstarch, lemon juice, and orange zest. Turn into the prepared crust, leaving room at the edges for sealing and crimping the pastry.
On a lightly floured board, roll out the remaining disk of dough in a circle 1.8-inch (.3-cm) thick. Cut it into ten ¾-inch (1.8-cm) strips using a knife or decorative crimper. Weave a lattice, beginning at the center of the pie, trim the strips, seal and flute the edges. Brush with the egg wash. In a small bowl, combine the butter, the ½ cup (120 mL) sugar, and flour. Use your fingertips to crumble the mixture until it resembles coarse meal (or combine with a food processor). Sprinkle the topping over the pie.
If time allows, chill for 30 minutes.
Bake for 10 minutes and then reduce the oven temperature to 350°F (175°C) and bake for 50 to 60 minutes, or until it’s bubbly in the center. Serve slightly warm or at room temperature.
Store lightly covered at room temperature for up to 2 days.
Makes one 10-inch (25-cm) pie (serves 8).
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