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23.8.15

PEAR TART

Pear Tart

Jim started to bring up small pears from the immature tree in our backyard and I longingly recall the time when Stewart, the young man who grew up next door brought over two lovely boxes of beautiful pears and I made these simple pear tarts. I cannot believe a year had to pass before I write about it. I did a variety of things with Stewart’s pears, but this was the only pear item I made notes and took pictures of.

Pears in pastry require a delicate hand. Instead of the more robust pie pastry, pears beg for the lighter puff pastry and for minimal intervention. There is nothing simple about that. The pears should be firm and slightly under ripe for making tarts. They hold loads of sweetness, but it will be best if overall impression remains fresh and delicate.

I used an entire package of puff pastry and the only difference was in the shaping. The tart and the tartlets tasted much the same. I used up an entire package of commercial puff pastry, but I could just as easily have made it with Hungarian Flaky Pastry.  Well maybe not, but certainly it would have worked the same.  Half of the package makes one large tart or about 7 tartlets.

1/2 pkg [one sheet or 1 block] commercial puff pastry defrosted
3 unpeeled pears, halved, cored, and thinly sliced
1 Tbsp melted butter
Glaze:
2 Tbsp melted sweet butter
1 Tbsp brown sugar
1 pinch of cinnamon
1 tsp pure vanilla extract
1 Tbsp FruitFresh
icing sugar for dusting

  • Preheat oven to 400F.
  • Cut a sheet of parchment to fit your baking pan or cookie sheet.
  • Lightly flour a clean surface and place half of the puff pastry on the top.
  • If the puff pastry is in a block, divide in two parts and roll one-half into a long rectangle to 4-5 mm thickness. Make sure the short width of the rectangle will accommodate the pear slices and still leave an inch of dough all around.
  • When you roll the dough, avoid stretching the pastry by hand or by rolling it in the same direction, because this will cause the pastry to shrink out of shape. So frequently turn the pastry as you roll it.
  • If the puff pastry is already in a sheet, cut it in half and the same way roll the half into a 4-5 mm thick long rectangle.
  • Lift the pastry and gently transfer it to the parchment lined baking sheet.
  • Turn over the edges to form ridge on the perimeter.
  • Brush the puff pastry with 1 Tbsp of melted butter.
  • Make the glaze and set aside.  
  • Then core, and thinly slice 3 unpeeled pears.
  • Layer the pear slices on top of the puff pastry.
  • With a pastry brush, generously brush top of the puff pastry with the glaze mixture.
  • Bake the tart for 15-20 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown.
  • Remove from the oven and let cool for a few minutes.
  • Slice and dust it with icing sugar.
For making tartlets treat the puff pastry the same way. Arrange the pear slices differently, otherwise brush the tartlets with the same glaze and bake the same way as the large tart. 

Pear Tartlets

6 comments:

  1. I love the shape and look, so very elegant x

    ReplyDelete
  2. Pears need to be used more in our desserts cause they're pretty amazing when baked. I agree that this is a very elegant dessert for being so simple.

    ReplyDelete
  3. Thank you Ladies!

    ReplyDelete
  4. The tarts are just beautiful Zsuzsa. You're fortunate to have pears growing in your back yard.
    I checked out your flaky pastry and wondered why you use margarine instead of butter? I know many of my Hungarian Aunt's recipes call for margarine.
    Eva https://kitcheninspirations.wordpress.com

    ReplyDelete
  5. Two reasons Eva. One was the cost and the other is that hard margarine gives a flakier pastry than butter. So depending on the recipe, it will be one of those reasons. I try to stick to butter but with flaky pastry, it is a bit of a shortcut from puff pastry, and I found margarine gives a much better result.

    ReplyDelete
  6. Thank you all for the kind words.

    ReplyDelete

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I began to post recipes for my family and it turned out to be a work in progress. "zsuzsa is in the kitchen" has over 900 recipes of Hungarian and international recipes. My recipes are organized into a cookbook format. On top of the page click on the cookbook to get access to all my recipes. If I ever figure out how to add a printer friendly gadget I will add it. In the meantime feel free to cut and paste. Happy cooking!

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