I have a confession to make. I have a sweet tooth. I started out by sharing a few healthy recipes, but I’m excited to share this recipe for an amazing fall dessert: pear tart. Baked pears are delicious by themselves. Bake them in a buttery tart crust with frangipane filling and you’ll be in heaven. This recipe is a bit more involved than some of the others I have shared so far, but trust me, it’s so worth the effort.
To make the pear tart you’ll need 3 very ripe pears. Depending on where you get your pears, they may not be very ripe. I find that I get great results when I buy the pears 3 or 4 days before I make the tart.
For the Frangipane:
2/3 cup sliced or slivered almonds
1 tsp flour
7 TBSP sugar
6 TBSP (3/4 stick) butter
1 large egg
For the Tart Crust:
8 TBSP (1 stick) butter
1/2 tsp salt
1/4 cup sugar
3/4 cup plus 2 TBSP flour
1/4 cup almond flour/meal
1 egg yolk
Start by making the frangipane because it needs to chill for 3 hours before it cooks.
In a food processor, finely grind the almonds together with the flour.
Mix in the sugar
Mix in the butter
And then the egg
Chill for 3 hours. You can make this a day or 2 ahead of time. I had never heard of frangipane before I started making this tart. It’s an almond based filling, kind of like a cream, but with a much stiffer texture.
Moving right along to the tart crust.
In your stand mixer, cream the butter, sugar, and salt on high speed until pale and shiny (3 mins).
Mix in the flour and almond flour.
Add egg yolk and mix until combined
Wrap the dough in plastic and chill in the refrigerator for at least 20 minutes. You can do this a day ahead of time.
Preheat the oven to 375.
Roll out your dough to about 1/4″ thickness.
It looks like I’m working directly on my counter top here, but I’m not. I put waxed paper down. I have a great trick for getting it to stay in place that my husband taught me. Spray the counter with water first, and then spread the waxed paper over the wet counter. It sticks really well. Then I also put a few pieces of tape around the edges.
Press the rolled out dough into your tart pan. Freeze for 10 minutes.
Remove tart pan from freezer and line with buttered foil (buttered side down). Top with beans, lentils, or pie weights.
Bake for 20 minutes. Remove the beans/weights and foil. Bake for 10 more minutes. Remove from oven and allow to cool on a wire rack. Patience is key here. You really have to let it cool before you move on.
The process of baking the crust with just foil and weights, without the filling, is called “blind baking”. It allows the crust to bake most of the way so that the filling won’t leak out and the tart won’t get a soggy bottom. The beans/weights prevent the tart from bubbling up while baking since the filling isn’t there to hold it down.
While you are waiting for the tart to cool, prep the pears. Wash them and cut them in half from top to bottom. Remove the stems and scoop out the cores. Set pears aside.
When the tart crust is cool, spread the frangipane evenly across the bottom.
Arrange the pear halves on top of the frangipane. My pears were much bigger than normal, so I had to trim them a bit with a knife to make them fit. I tried to keep them “pear shaped”.
Bake at 350 for one hour or until a toothpick inserted into the frangipane comes out clean.
Serve warm. Savor.