Fall is my favorite season. I love the cooler temperatures, the burst of new color, and most of all, rustic and hearty fall meals. Pears are a plentiful this time of year, and this is a great light dessert that is just as at home on the grill as it is the oven.
This recipe is one of those that makes it look like you spent a ton of time, yet it's pretty much brain-dead easy. I tried the recipe both on the grill and baked. While the grilled version has a more outdoorsy flavor (of course), the oven version was just as good. After all, indirect grilling is basically baking over coals outdoors.
I used frozen pie crust to make the preparation simple with very little clean-up. You can certainly use homemade dough, but it's really overkill for this recipe.
2 Bosc or Bartlett pears, ripe (I used Bosc)
1 Frozen deep dish pie crust, thawed
3 oz Fontina cheese, sliced to about 1/4"
2 Tbsp Brown sugar
1 Tbsp All-purpose flour (you could use whole wheat)
1/2 tsp Pumpkin pie spice
1/3 cup Apricot preserves
2 Tbsp + 2 tsp Water, divided
1 tsp Sugar
Start your grill and prepare for indirect cooking at 375º, or preheat your oven to 375º.
Combine the brown sugar, flour and pumpkin pie spice in a small bowl and mix well with a fork.
Peel the pears (optional, but I did) and cut them lengthwise into quarters. Remove the core from each quarter and slice them to about 1/4" into a medium mixing bowl.
Add the sugar, flour, and spice mixture to the pears, fold gently to coat the pears evenly, and set aside.
Arrange the cheese slices evenly in the flat bottom of the pie crust.
Pour the pear mixture into a pile in the flat bottom of the crust. You want to leave the sides uncovered.
Fold the very top edge of the crust up and flatten it to a consistent thickness. You want to create smooth sides.
Gently fold the sides over in sixths and pinch the extra dough together to form an appealing edge.
Whisk the egg and one teaspoon of water well in a small mixing bowl. Brush the edges with the egg wash and sprinkle with the sugar.
Cook indirect (or bake on the center rack) for 40 minutes, or until the crust is just golden brown.
While the galette is cooking, whisk the apricot preserves and 2 tablespoons of water in a small mixing bowl until smooth.
Drizzle the exposed pears with about three tablespoons of the thinned preserves and cook another 10 minutes.
Remove from the grill/oven and let cool 20-30 minutes.
Slice and serve with a drizzle of the remaining preserve mixture.
(Makes 6 servings)
Note: This pairs (no pun intended) very well with a nice dessert wine. Or, skip the wine and serve it warm with some vanilla bean ice cream.