Tarte aux poires
It is getting to be that time of year again. It’s a strange time of year for me, really. A time of year when I feel a compulsion to make something that isn’t chocolate.
Yes, it can happen. It doesn’t last long–mostly because I am not a very big person, so if I start adding non-chocolate sweets to all the chocolate sweets I already consume, I get pangs of healthy conscious, and start Googling things like “breaking the sugar addiction”, and I feel it’s just all downhill from there.
Still, sometimes I have to make room in my diet for some of the other great desserts of the world, and the French tarte aux poires et à la crème amandine, or Pear-Almond Tart, is one of them. And it’s pear season!
The above is my humble rendition of this classic. My own recipe is one that I have been using for a while, so I have lost track of its origins, but I believe it was adapted (very slightly) from Dorie Greenspan, whose cookbooks I love, and David Lebovitz.
I use a cooking scale, so the following measures are in weights. However, if you need volume measures, Dorie Greenspan never leads anyone astray.
1 partially baked pie crust (you should make your own, but mine are always bad, so I don’t)
85 grams almond flour (you can grind your own blanched almonds if you prefer)
85 grams sugar
2 tsp. flour
85 grams butter (~6 tbsp)
1 large egg
1/4 tsp almond extract
1 can pears in light or heavy syrup (the kind in pear juice will work, but they are not quite sweet enough and so the flavors don’t blend as smoothly with the almond cream). Can be halves or slivers, as you prefer. You can also poach your own pears, which of course is even better, but honestly, even with all the time-savers, this tart is incredible.
Mix together the sugar, almond flour, flour. With a mixer, blend in the butter until smooth. Add egg and almond extract and beat again until smooth.
Pour into pre-baked pie crust. Layer can of pears in according to your design preference.
Bake at 375 F for 40-45 minutes, until a nice golden brown.
Serve at room temperature.
So rich, so buttery, so good. Try it. It’s a French classic, one of the simplest things in the world to make, and irresistible.
Nothing says deliciousness quite like almond cream. I have no idea why we don’t use it more in US baking.
This is a great tart for Thanksgiving, or for any time during the fall. Even though, with canned pears, you can really make it all year long, it just suits the fall and winter the best.
I hope you enjoy it!