The second I saw this Poached Pear Tart I knew that I had found the perfect Valentine’s Day dessert for the husband. I’ve already confided in you his “strange” preference for all fruit filled desserts over all decadent chocolatey offerings. I know….bizarro! But at least I’ve accepted and internalized this knowledge and can apply it when I’m trying to come up with a sweet indulgence made just for him.
A Pear Tart would not be my Valentine’s choice, but I’m not baking for me. My husband knows what to get me (cupcakes!), so I will leave it to him. But back to this tart, I could tell from his perspective this dessert has it going on! I mean, he absolutely LOVES tarts, anyone who knows him will tell you that about him without hesitation… (snicker, snicker) and this one has wine poached pears baked in lovely lemony cream! Seems like it was a recipe crafted just with him in mind. A perfect Valentine’s treat!
I must admit though, I really don’t like working with pears at all! It’s not that I don’t like them, I really do. It’s just that I can never tell if they are ripe or not. So I spend an eternity in the store, gently touching every pear on display, like some sort of pear whisperer, hoping that the mysterious fruit will take pity on me and push the ripe ones of themselves into my basket. Yet that has never happened, so I finally give up and just pick a few to cart home with me. Of course they are not the perfect ripe ones, so I try to accelerate the process by placing them in paper bags with other ripening fruit. Yeah. They remain rock hard until I turn my back for like 5 minutes and I come back to find them ripened into a pile of mush! Don’t know if that happens to you or not, but it sure happens to me. Though this time, I really wanted this dessert to work out for Valentine’s Day, so I held vigil by these little devils until they were ready! Yup. It’s true I love my husband that much. I braved the pears and actually won on this time!
There are quite a few steps involved in making this tart, but the good news is that you can break them up over several days if necessary. I poached the pears and made the pastry on one day and then completed the recipe on the following day. Making this tart was definitely worth the time investment because it not only looks beautiful but tastes amazing. Refreshingly light.
I served each slice with a scoop of simple vanilla ice cream drizzled with a scrumptious syrup reduction of the pear poaching liquid. And don’t forget the champagne of course! Happy Valentine’s Day!
Poached Pear Tart with Lemony Cream
recipe from: Elra
yield: one 11″ tart
For the pastry dough:
- 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons chilled unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 1 1/2 cup all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup confectioner sugar
- a pinch of salt
- 1 egg, lightly beaten
- 3 ripe but still firm Bosch pears
- 750 ml (1 bottle) good quality white wine of your preference
- 1/2 cup sugar
- vanilla bean, scraped
- 1/4 cup (30 g) sugar
- 4 tablespoons (50 g) unsalted butter, softened
- 1 large egg
- 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
- zest of 1 lemon
- lemon juice from 1 lemon
- 1/4 cup (50 g) all-purpose flour
- 1/8 tsp baking powder
- 1/4 tsp sea salt, optional
Confectioner’s sugar for dusting
Generously grease an 11-inch removable bottom tart pan with butter.