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These pear turnovers are your answer to when you don’t feel like making a pie for the holidays. And who doesn’t love their own handheld version of pie? I swapped out the traditional apples and went for juicy, ripe pears in this spiced filling and with flaky layers of puffy pastry, and sweet vanilla icing drizzled over, what’s not to love?
One of the desserts I adored as a child were those boxed turnovers. You know the ones. Hello, I grew up in the 80’s. I know what it means when someone says “dial up modem”. I still love playing Nintendo. And I can’t say no to a warm turnover.
But seriously, why does anyone bother buying those boxed ones when you can make a homemade version that’s way better? Ok yes I still used boxed puff pastry. Sure you could go ahead and make puffy pastry. I have. It’s a labor of love. It’s 2020. The holidays are approaching. Forgive me. I grabbed the box of puff pastry and didn’t look back.
Puff pastry is your answer to that “must have pie” for the holidays conundrum. Don’t get me wrong I love me some pie. But this Thanksgiving is going to look a little different. A little smaller. A little more virtual for myself. So I figured why would I whip up a whole pie for 3 people?
How about we make hand held turnovers instead. I decided to mix things up a bit and make these pear turnovers. Move over apple it’s pears turn to shine.
What Is A Turnover?
Ok maybe you’re not an 80’s child. Or didn’t grow up on these. That’s cool, let me show you the light. A turnover is a hand held dessert that is made out of puff pastry and hiding inside is some sort of filling – could be sweet or savory. They are folded into triangles (at least that’s how I’ve always seen them!) and baked.
Why You Will Love These Pear Turnovers
- Quick To Make – You have to cook the filling, but other that these are quick to make since we are using a box of puff pastry.
- Make Now. Freeze For Later – I hate having to make desserts last minute, especially for the holidays. So you can make these now, assemble them, and go ahead and freeze them to bake later if you want.
- Seasonal – I love using seasonal produce if I can. And what’s better than to make a pear dessert in the Fall?
Ingredients For These Turnovers
- Puff pastry – You want to make sure your puff pastry is thawed according to the box directions. You will use the WHOLE box to make 8 turnovers.
- Pears – You want about 3-4 pears, that you peel and dice up small.
- Flour – This doesn’t go into the recipe, but just to dust the counter with.
- Butter – The pears will cook in a little butter to get soft and delicious.
- Cinnamon – Of course you need some warm spices to go with the pears!
- Ginger– I love pairing pears and ginger together.
- Brown sugar – I love using organic brown sugar, and this helps to sweeten up the pear filling.
- Salt – A little salt always helps to balance the sweetness in your recipe.
- Egg – You will need to mix an egg with some water to make an egg wash to help seal the turnovers, and brush on top to help them get golden brown.
How to make this recipe
Remove puff pastry from the freezer and thaw according to instructions while making and cooling the pear filling.
In a medium pot, melt 1 Tbsp butter over medium heat. Add diced pears and cook, stirring occasionally until softened (5 min).
Reduce heat to low and stir in the brown sugar, cinnamon, ginger and salt. Continue to simmer 3 minutes until pears are soft and caramelized. Remove from heat and set aside to cool.
Use a rolling pin to roll the first sheet of thawed pastry to an 11″ square.
With a pizza cutter, cut into 4 equal-sized squares.
Place a ¼ cup cooled pear mixture in center of each square, leaving at least a 1/2″ border. Filling is juicy so make sure to not get too much liquid when scooping mixture.
Thoroughly Beat together 1 egg and 1 Tbsp water. Brush eggwash lightly on edges of the pastry (just enough to seal), bring the edges together.
And crimp tightly along the edges using a fork to seal.
Transfer to a parchment-lined baking sheet, keeping them at least 1″ apart. With a paring knife, cut 2-3 small slits in the top of each turnover. Refrigerate for 20 minutes (this helps the filling from leaking out.)
Preheat oven to 400F. Brush the tops with egg wash and bake 20-23 minutes or until golden and puffed.
While turnovers are still warm, stir together powdered sugar and heavy whipping cream (adding to your desired consistency) and drizzle glaze over turnovers.
How do I keep the turnover filling from leaking?
Here are a couple tips:
- Crimp the edges with a fork
- Refrigerate the turnovers for 20 minutes before baking.
- Use an egg wash to seal the edges before crimping.
Can you freeze turnovers?
Yes you can. Freeze them unbaked, and without an egg wash.
Arrange them on a small parchment lined baking sheet, and freeze uncovered. Once frozen, transfer them to a freezer bag. And then when ready to bake, arrange them on a baking sheet, do NOT thaw, egg wash and bake for about 23-25 minutes.
Tips For Making These Pear Turnovers
- Dust The Counter. The puff pastry might stick a little so be sure to dust your counter a little.
- Refrigerate before baking. Make sure to refrigerate first so that way your turnovers don’t pop open up in the oven.
- Don’t Overfill! It’s tempting to add more filling, but I found 1/4 cup of filling to be perfect.
Got More Pears? Make These Recipes
Here’s What You Need To Make These Turnovers
- Baking Sheet <– I love my Nordic Ware metallic sheets. They are sturdy and never warp. I also love getting varied sizes, so I can have a small one that fits in my freezer.
- Parchment paper <– I use unbleached,compostable, recycable parchment paper
- Large saucepan <– Cuisinart is my go to for pans
- Pizza cutter <– Makes it so easy to cut the puff pastry into squares
- Pastry brush <– I own silicone pastry brushes, but also own these kind
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