I met a delightful gentleman several years ago. We had chatted online quite a bit (back when AOL was new and had local area chat rooms). At one point he didn't sound quite OK, and I pushed him for his address. I am a pushy person -- deal with it. Anyway, I was able to get to know him in person, push (again) to get him some medical care, and acquire a smart, educated, funny, and fascinating friend.
When he learned about my love for baking, he asked me if I ever made pear pie. I had never heard of pear pie, but I told him I was game. I put one together that was pretty much just a variation of my classic apple pie. It was OK, but not spectacular.
Years later, after I moved to Oregon and married Knute, we went to California to visit family. Knute's mom was putting together food to take over to a family gathering, and lo and behold, she was making pear pies! I watched her, made a mental note, and tried my hand at them when we got home. Absolutely delicious.
Rather than tell my friend he has to come from San Diego to Portland to get a pear pie, I share this simple recipe, and I hope he gives it a try, as a reward to himself for toughing it out through the hard times and sharing his wit and wisdom with so many. Here's to you, Mike!
9" pie shell -- regular pastry, whole wheat, or graham cracker, unbaked
6-8 ripe pears, or enough to slice and fill the crust to the top without mounding
1 cup sugar
nutmeg or cinnamon, if desired.
Slice the pears and place them in the crust. Whisk the eggs and sugar, and pour mixture over the pears. Bake at 350F for about 40 minutes, or until custard is set. Dust with spice if desired, or add a dollop of whipped cream.
Serves 8 polite old ladies or 2 bachelors.