Or should i call it, ‘Pain in the Tush Pear Tart’?
This was without a doubt the most involved recipe i have ever made – thank you ‘New Basics’ cookbook. As part of my continuing quest to actually use the cookbooks we own, I spent hours in the kitchen yesterday.
I decided it would be a festive fall thing to do/ make and a good way to use up the uneaten pears i bought at the market last week. What I got was just desserts! sorry.
Pear Sauce Tart
- 2/3 C all purpose flour
- 1/3 C ground walnuts (or hazelnuts)
- 1/2 t salt
- 4 T butter (chilled and chopped up)
- 1/4 t lemon juice
- 1 T cold water
- 1 T sugar
- 6 Bosc pears, slightly under-ripe, peeled, cored, and quartered
- 2 T lemon juice
- 1 C sugar
- 2 T Poire Williams (pear liqueur – i substituted butterscotch schnapps)
Pears + Topping:
- 1 slice fresh ginger, peeled
- 2 C champagne (i used white wine)
- 1 1/2 C water
- 1/4 C lemon juice
- 1 C sugar
- 1/3 C applesauce
- 2 cinnamon sticks
- 4 whole cloves
- 4 ripe but firm Bosc Pears
- 1 T white vinegar
- 2 T Poire Williams (or butterscotch schnapps =)
- Prepare the pastry shell: Combine flour, walnuts, and salt in a food processor and process for 15-20 sec. Add butter and lemon and process for 15 addt’l sec. Gradually add cold water through feeder tube, 1/2 t at a time – ONLY ADDING ENOUGH FOR THE DOUGH TO COME TOGETHER. Gather the dough into a ball, flatten, wrap in plastic, and refrigerate for 30 min.
- Preheat oven to 425F. Butter a 9″ tart pan. After the dough is chilled, roll it out into an ~11″ circle on a lightly floured counter. Transfer to the buttered pan
and crimp the edges. Prick the bottom of the pastry with a fork, cover with aluminum foil (shiny side down) and bake for 15 min. Remove foil and bake addt’l 8-10 min. or until golden brown. Set aside to cool.
- Prepare the sauce (start while pastry is chillin): Combine half the pear quarters and 1 T lemon juice in the food processor and process for ~30 sec. Transfer the mixture to a heavy saucepan and then repeat with remaining pears.
- Stir the sugar and Poire Williams into the pot and cook over low heart until the mixture begins to turn color ~30 min. Then increase to medium low heat and simmer for 1 1/2 hours, stirring occasionally until it becomes the consistency of applesauce. Set it aside to cool.
- To make the topping, first prepare the poaching liquid: Cut the ginger into 1/8″ julienne strips and combine with champagne, water, lemon juice, sugar, applesauce, cinnamon sticks, and cloves in a medium sized saucepan. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for 15 minutes. Set aside.
- Peel the pears, reserving the peel, and cut them in half longways. Core them as neatly as possible with a knife or melon baller. Place them in a large bowl and water to cover. Add the vinegar to prevent discoloring.
- Combine the peeled pears, remaining 1/2 C water, remaining 1/2 C sugar, and Poire Williams in a saucepan. Bring to a boil, then reduce heat and simmer for 10 minutes. Strain and set the liquid aside. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to the poaching liquid, add pear peel liquid, bring to a boil, simmer for 8 minutes, then remove from heat and let cool in the liquid.
- Using a slotted spoon, transfer the pears to a shallow dish. Bring poaching liquid to a boil and reduce to 1 1/2 C (about 15 minutes).
- Pour reduced poaching liquid over pears and refrigerate till completely cooled – about 4 hours.
- Assemble the tart: Spread sauce into the prepared pie crust. Slice cooled pear halves crosswise into half moons and arrange to cover the whole surface.
- Preheat the broiler on high with a rack at the top shelf.
- Cover the edge of the crust with aluminum foil (really – do this) and place the tart under the broiler until the pears turn golden brown – about 5 minutes. Serve hot or at room temperature with a dusting of powdered sugar. I thought it was even better cold the next day.