These Pear, Pecan and Syrup Pies are the perfect autumnal bake for colder days and darker nights. The pies are made with a delicate, golden pastry and a lattice style topping with a crimped edge. They’re filled with a delicious combination of gently cooked pears, crème fraîche, beautiful buttery pecans and sweet Lyle’s golden syrup. Serve them with your favourite side – warm vanilla custard, whipped or runny cream, or a tangy crème fraîche.
This post is kindly sponsored by Lyle’s Golden Syrup.
Tips to make flaky, delicate pastry:
Making pastry can prove difficult if you don’t quite know the ins and outs of pie making. Here are my tips, tricks and tools that’ll turn your pastry making from meh to wow!
- Chill all your ingredients. Pie crust favours reeeeally cold ingredients. Cold, cubed butter. Cold eggs. Cold hands. Cold surfaces like marble. Keep everything as chilled as possible before making your dough.
- Use a high fat content butter. Please never use spread or margarine, as the lower fat content won’t create a flaky, delicate pastry. Choose unsalted real butter instead.
- Don’t overwork the dough. You want to bring the dough together with your hands, but only until it just comes together in a ball – then, stop kneading. Keeping a few flecks of fat (butter) in the dough is totally fine and actually makes for a flakier crust.
- Rest the dough. Refrigerating your dough allows the glutens in the flour to relax. This, in turn, should help to give a more tender pie crust with less shrinkage when placed in the oven.
- Invest in a pastry pusher. My number one investment for pie making is a pastry pusher. This will help carefully creating the perfect, neat base and sides to your pie, and maximise room for the filling to be added.
- Roll the lattice dough thicker than the crust. To perfectly lattice your pie, take one-third of the dough and roll it a little thicker than the dough that is lining your pie tins.
- Use non-stick mini tins for easy release. My top tip is to wait for your pies to cool for 10 minutes once removed from the oven, then loosen the edges of the pies with a sharp knife and invert the pie tin. Your pies should come out nice and easily when using non-stick tins.
What makes these Pear, Pecan and Syrup Pies so special?
- You can make the pastry ahead of time and store it in the fridge until you’re ready to make them.
- They’re perfect for individual puddings that are set to impress!
- You can substitute the pears for any pome fruit – try apples or quince instead.
- You could make this as one large pie instead.
- They’re warming, nostalgic and flavoursome.
What should I serve these Pear, Pecan and Syrup Pies with?
My favourite accompaniments for these Pear, Pecan and Syrup Pies are:
- Warm vanilla custard
- Whipped double cream, or a drizzle of single cream
- Crème fraîche
- Vanilla ice cream
See how I made these Pear, Pecan and Syrup Pies over on Instagram!
Pear, Pecan and Syrup Pies
For the pie crust
- 420 g plain flour sifted
- 50 g caster sugar
- 340 g unsalted butter
- 8-12 tbsp iced water
- 1 large free-range egg whisked, for the egg wash
For the filling
- 450 g pears peeled and chopped into small cubes
- 15 g unsalted butter
- 3 large free-range eggs
- 200 g caster sugar
- 240 ml crème fraîche
- 100 g Lyle's golden syrup
- 1 tsp vanilla extract
- 160 g pecans roughly chopped
- A little milk for brushing
To make the pastry
- Preheat the oven to 180C / 350F then grease 8-10 non-stick mini pie tins with a generous amount of butter.
- Mix together the dry ingredients in a large bowl, then grate the butter over the bowl, stirring so the butter is completely covered in the flour mixture. Rub the mixture between your fingertips until it resembles breadcrumbs then add the water in small increments, stirring, until 8 tablespoons of the water is added.N.B. You may not need all 12 tablespoons of water. Knead the dough for about 30 seconds to help disperse the moisture, then grab a handful of the mixture and squeeze. If it generally sticks together when you let go, it is fine. If it completely crumbles apart, it needs another tablespoon or two of water. Once the dough holds its shape, pat it into a rough circle, wrap it in clingfilm, and refrigerate it for 30 minutes.
- Roll out the dough on a lightly floured surface until it is about 1/8-inch thick. Save ¼ of the dough for your lattice tops, then cut out 6-8 circles larger than your pie tins so it fills the sides, and place one in each of the mini pie tins, letting the excess dough hang over the edge.Top tip: use a pastry pusher to gently press your pastry into the base of your mini pie tins.
To make the pear, pecan and syrup filling
- To make the pear pecan filling, begin by melting the butter in a small saucepan over medium-low heat.
- Add the diced pears and cook them for 10-15 minutes, stirring every now and then until they’re tender and slightly golden. Remove the pan from heat and let the pears cool down to room temperature.
- In a large bowl, whisk together the eggs, sugar, creme fraiche, golden syrup and vanilla extract salt until combined and smooth. Set aside for later.
To assemble the pies
- Preheat the oven to 190 C / 375F. Once the pie crust is prepared and the pie pans are ready to be filled, stir the sautéed pears and the whole pecans into the egg mixture.
- Evenly distribute the mixture between the pie tins. Use the remaining dough to lattice the pies, then fold the excess dough overhanging the edges of the pie back over the ends of the lattice, and crimp with a fork to seal the edges. Lightly brush with a little milk.
- Place the pie pans on a baking tray and bake in the oven for 40-45 minutes until the crust is golden brown and the filling is lightly golden on top. Remove and allow to cool for 20 minutes before serving.
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