Buttermilk Custard Pear Pie

Pie dough for one 9″ crust
1 egg + 1 tablespoon water, beaten, optional (for the crust)
5 cups peeled and thinly sliced just-ripe pears (4-5 medium)
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 cup all-purpose flour
1 large vanilla bean, scraped
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 eggs, lightly beaten
1 cup buttermilk
2 tablespoons butter, melted

Preheat oven to 425° F. Roll out pie crust and fit into a 9″ pie plate. Place in the refrigerator to chill for 10 minutes. Brush the edges of the crust lightly with the beaten egg.

Arrange slices of pear over the crust just to the top edge, leaving a slight lip for the custard and fruit to expand during cooking.

In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, flour, vanilla bean seeds and salt. Add in eggs, buttermilk and melted butter and whisk until smooth. Pour the custard mix over the pears.

Bake at 425° F for 10 minutes. Reduce heat to 350° F and continue baking for 45-55 minutes until custard is set and the pie is firm in the center. Remove from oven and allow to cool slightly. Serve warm.

Makes 8-10 slices of pie.

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