Nannie's Pear Mincemeat Pie or Empanadas
Yields: 12 pints, or enough filling for 12 pies
2 c. Mincemeat filling (see recipe, below)
1 (8 or 9-inch) unbaked pastry shells
1/2 c. chopped pecans
Spread filling in a 8 or 9-inch uncooked pastry shell. Sprinkle top of filling with pecans. Cover with a top crust, and flute edge. Make four slits in top crust, each about an inch long.
Bake at 375 degrees about 40 minutes, or until filling bubbles up in slits. Serve warm or at room temperature.
about 10 lbs. firm cooking pears
3 lemons, quartered and seeded (leave peel on)
1 1/2 lbs. ground beef
2 lbs. raisins
2 T. salt, or less to taste
1 T. cinnamon
5 lbs. brown sugar
1 T. cider vinegar
1 tsp. ground cloves
1 tsp. allspice
Peel and core enough pears to measure 4 quarts; place in container of food processor. Add lemons, and process lightly (do not puréé); set aside.
Cook ground beef in a Dutch oven until well done. Add pear-lemon mixture and remaining ingredients, mix well, and refrigerate 4 hours.
Boil 20 minutes, stirring constantly. Cover tightly, and refrigerate overnight. Boil 20 minutes again, and pack into pint containers, allowing room for expansion. Freeze.
Note: This recipe may also be used to make empanadas. (To make 16 empanadas, you'll need 1 c. of filling, to which 1/4 c. chopped pecans has been added, and 4 unbaked pastry shells.)
Cut 4-inch circles from pastry shells, and spread 1 heaping teaspoon of filling on half of each circle. Fold half of circle over the other half, and press edges together with a fork. Sprinkle empanadas with granulated sugar, and bake on a cookie sheet at 375 degrees for about 15 minutes, or until golden.
From the January 2000 issue.