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Preheat the oven to 425 and blind-bake one 9-inch pie crust for 10-12 minutes, until the crust is no longer shiny and raw in the center. Cool on a wire rack while you make the filling.
Core and slice the pears into 1/4 inch-thick slices. Toss with the lemon juice and vanilla in a large bowl.
Whisk the sugar, cornstarch, ginger and kosher salt together to remove any lumps.
Stir the dry ingredients and walnuts into the pears until evenly distributed, and pour into the pie crust. Dot the top of the pie evenly with the butter chunks.
Roll out the second pie crust and slice into 1-inch strips for lattice if desired. Top the pie with the second pie crust, making slits in the crust for steam to escape if not weaving a lattice pattern.
Brush the top crust with heavy cream and sprinkle with raw sugar if desired.
Bake for 15 minutes, then reduce the oven temperature to 350 and bake for 45 minutes more, until the filling is bubbling and the crust is golden brown. Cover the edges of the crust with foil if it starts to brown too much before the filling is set.
Cool the pie completely on a wire rack before serving.