My daughter and I go on a pear kick during the late fall and early winter months. We eat them fresh, put them in desserts, heck - we even put them on pizza, but more on that later. Today, I'm sharing a simple pastry that's almost from scratch and combines my three favorite seasonal fruits: pears, apples, and cranberries.
Making a rich filling for these turnovers is key to how amazing they are. The caramel-like sauce that coats the fruit has a depth of flavor I adore and I favor dark brown sugar in the mix for this reason. That said, it can easily be made with light brown sugar as well. Your filling will not have the deep caramel color that is pictured here and will be more golden. Both will be delicious!
If you've not worked with frozen puff pastry before, you are in for a treat. Thaw the stuff and wrap it around all manner of fillings, from sweet to savory, and bake it in an oven until it's tender, crisp, and simply stunning. If you have guests for the holidays, get ready for a lot of ooohs and aaahs with this one! And, of course, Seasoned Greetings!
- 2 firm apples - peeled, cored and sliced (I used honeycrisp)
- 2 firm pears - cored and chopped (I used bartlett)
- 2 tablespoons butter
- 1 cup dark brown sugar
- 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
- 1 tablespoon cornstarch mixed with 1 tablespoon cold water
- ¼ cup dried cranberries
- 1 (17.25 ounce) package frozen puff pastry sheets - thawed
- 1 egg, whisked with a fork
- ¼ cup turbinado sugar (or other coarse sugar)
In a large bowl, combine the prepared apples and pears; set aside.
Melt the butter in a large skillet over medium heat. Add the apples and pears to the hot skillet. Cook and stir for about 2 minutes. Add the brown sugar and cinnamon, and cook, stirring, for 2 more minutes. Stir together the cornstarch and 1 tablespoon water. Add to the skillet and mix well. Cook for another minute or until the sauce has thickened. Remove the skillet from the heat to cool slightly.
Preheat the oven to 400° F.
Unfold the thawed puff pastry sheets and repair any cracks by pressing them back together. Cut each square of pastry into 4 smaller squares. Spoon the fruit mixture onto the center of each square. Fold the pastry over from corner to corner into a triangle shape and press the edges together to seal. Place turnovers on a baking sheet, leaving about 1 inch between them. Brush the pastries with the beaten egg and sprinkle with the coarse sugar. At this point, you can bake them all or wrap the unbaked triangles in waxed paper and freeze until you want to bake them later - you can bake them from frozen using the instructions below. Just watch them near the end to make sure they do not burn.
Bake the pastries for 20-25 minutes in the preheated oven until turnovers are puffed and lightly browned. Cool slightly before serving.
- Yields: 8 pastries
- Preparation Time: 45 minutes