Serves: 6 to 8
Prep: 1 hour
Bake: 22 to 25 minutes
Looking for an unusual dessert to bring to a fall or winter dinner party? Something out of the ordinary for a family holiday dinner? Turn the gluten-free pie crust dough into a crostata, filling it with seasonal pears and a handful of fresh cranberries. Once baked the pears offer sweetness and the cranberries tang, and all you need to pull this delightful pastry together is a scoop of ice cream—try vanilla, dulce de leche, honey, or lemon.
Dough for 1 gluten-free pie crust, homemade (9-inches), cold
4 to 5 large pears
2/3 to 3/4 cup granulated sugar, plus 1 tablespoon granulated sugar for sprinkling over the crostata
1/4 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1 cup fresh cranberries
1 egg white, slightly beaten
Ice cream, for serving
1.Remove the pie crust dough from the refrigerator or freezer while preparing the fruit. Place a rack in the center of the oven and preheat the oven to 425°F.
2.Rinse, peel, core, and slice each pear into 8 to 10 slices. Place the pears in a medium-size bowl and set aside. Place O to I cup of the sugar, depending on how sweet you want the fruit to be, and the cinnamon in a small bowl. Set the cinnamon sugar aside.
Place a 16-inch piece of parchment paper on a baking sheet. Place the pie crust dough in the center of the parchment paper. Using the heels of your hands and your fingers, press the dough out into an 11- to 12-inch circle. Sprinkle half of the cinnamon-sugar mixture in the center of the pie crust, leaving a 1H-inch border. Attractively arrange the pear slices on top of the sugar, leaving the border of crust bare. Sprinkle the cranberries on top of the pears. Sprinkle the remaining cinnamon sugar on top of the fruit.
3.Carefully pull the edges of the parchment paper up to lift the dough border over the fruit, pressing the dough with your fingers to form creases and seal the fruit in. The fruit in the center of the crostata remains uncovered by crust. 4.Repair any tears by patching the dough with your fingers. Using a pastry brush, brush the egg white over the border edge of the crust. Sprinkle the border with the remaining 1 tablespoon of sugar. Place the baking sheet in the oven.
5.Bake the crostata until the crust is golden brown and the fruit and sugar are bubbling, 22 to 25 minutes. Tent the crostata with aluminum foil after 16 to 18 minutes to prevent it from overbrowning. Let the crostata cool for about 15 minutes, then slice it like a pizza and serve it in shallow bowls with ice cream. It's best to eat the crostata on the day it's baked.
Not a fan of cranberries? Omit them, using 2/3 cup of sugar and adding 1/4 cup of raisins instead.
Use a dairy-free pie crust (see page 321) and serve without ice cream and this crostata is dairy-free.