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Almond Pear Tart - Food Gypsy

Pear Almond Tart with Whole Wheat Crumble Crust

A stunning Pear Almond Tart the wholesome twist of a whole wheat crumble crust, the finishing touch to our holiday feast. Rich and mellow, it was an elegant end on a dark winter’s night. Pure, French comfort food.

It’s impossible not to be influenced by French cuisine living this life. Between the an education at Fancy French Cooking School, the Burgundy born chef in my life, and my current abode in western Quebec; I am continually immersed in French culture. Despite my frequent butchering of the language, I am becoming more and more comfortable with the food!

Comfortable In The French Kitchen

I can scoff down copious quantities of foie gras in one sitting, swill a good pinot with affection and make a pretty mean Poulet Sauté Chasseur. I suppose it’s time to attempt sweets.

French cuisine and it’s perfectionism can be intimidating, but once you recognise that most French cooking was created in a the family kitchen – just like any other cuisine – it becomes a matter of time and artful presentation. The principles are similar, but it’s the finesse of the finish that sets French food apart.

Pear Almond tart, Shell & Fruit - Food Gypsy

Pear Shaped

Making this simple, but elegant Pear Almond Tart, the delicate fruit is sliced and arranged on a rich almond cream; with precision and symmetry.

I find this look begins with the selection of your fruit; if they’re similar in size and shape, you’ll have a more uniform look. I like to cook with Bosc pears as I feel they have a firmer flesh, finer grain and lower water content for a more consistent baked product. Also rather fond of their long, slender neck and fat, round bottom. The epitome of of a pear-shaped pear.

pear almond tart, before glaze - Food Gypsy

Happy Accidents Make Great Recipes

Beneath the pear and almond cream I deviated from tradition with a whole wheat crumble crust. I accidently bought whole wheat flour, gotta’ use it somehow! It’s wholesome and nutty and a nice balance to the subtle sweetness of pears. Also, this type of crust is dead easy. It’s what I call a ‘zip it & press it’ crust. No rolling required.

Alternately, you can go with the standard Pate Brisse for this Pear Almond Tart, as recommended by the Frenchman in residence, here’s a link to his recipe and tutorial.

I believe that many of life’s happiest accidents start this way, so I fought the urge to run out to retrieve the proper flour on Christmas eve, added more butter and had a glass of wine instead.

Most obstacles in life can be overcome, with a little wine and a bit more butter!

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Almond Pear Tart - Food Gypsy

Pear Almond Tart with Whole Wheat Crumble Crust


  • Author: Cori Horton
  • Total Time: 1 hour 40 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 6 1x
  • Diet: Vegetarian

Description

Make this Pear Almond Tart with the wholesome twist of a whole wheat crumble crust. No dough to roll, just mix, press, chill and bake. It’s a rich, mellow and elegant end to any meal. Pure French comfort food.


Ingredients

Units Scale

Pears

  • 5 cups water
  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 stick cinnamon
  • 5 pods cardamom, lightly crushed
  • 23 large pears, peeled
  • Substitution: 5 canned pear halves, in heavy syrup)

Crumble Crust

  • 6 tablespoons butter, soft
  • 1/3 cup sugar
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 1/2 cup almond flour
  • 2 teaspoons water

Almond Cream

  • 3 tablespoons butter, soft
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt
  • 2/3 cup sugar
  • 1 tablespoon + 2 teaspoons whole wheat flour
  • 1/4 teaspoon almond extract
  • 3 tablespoons rum
  • 2 large eggs
  • 3/4 cup almond flour

Optional Glaze:

  • 2 tablespoons apricot jam, thinned with (about) 2 tablespoons of water

Instructions

1. For the Pears: In a deep pot add water, sugar & spices and bring to a boil. Add peeled pears, reduce heat to a low simmer and poach, rolling and basting as needed for 10 – 20 minutes until pears are just cooked through. Remove from heat and cool, in the liquid. the remove and drain. This can be done two or three days ahead and held cold until needed.

2. For The Crust: Preheat the oven to 350°F (175°C) and coat tart pan (4 1/4″ x 13 3/4″) with non-stick spray. In an electric stand mixer fitted with a paddle tool, cream together butter, sugar, salt, vanilla & almond extract and water. If you’re not using a mixer, cream together with a sturdy wooden spoon.) Add both the whole wheat and almond flours, until just blended, so that crumbs cling together when squeezed. Distribute the crumble mixture evenly on the bottom of your tart pan, and gently crumbs up the sides with the pads of your fingers, to cover the bottom and sides of the pan to a consistent thickness. Then prick crust, lightly, all over with a fork.

3. Once formed, chill crust for 15 minutes in the freezer, then bake at 350°F (175°C) until just beginning to brown on the edges; 18 to 20 minutes. This will keep it from becoming too dark, and tough. Remove parbaked crust from oven and cool. (Can be done a day ahead.)

4. Almond Cream: Using your electric mixer or a wooden spoon, beat together the butter, salt, sugar, whole wheat flour, almond extract and rum. Beat in the eggs, then add the almond flour, stirring just to combine.
5. Assembly: Spread the filling evenly on the bottom of the crust. Cut well-drained pears in approximately 1/4 inch wedges. (My pears being quite large, I chose to cut them in eighths, lengthwise.) Place pears, bottom end to the outside, on top of the filling, pressing down gently into the almond cream so that the edges of the bottom layer are covered. Then proceed with a tighter, top layer until tart is filled.

6. Bake for 50 – 55 minutes, until filling is set and firm and top is lightly browned. Test with a toothpick, when it emerges clean from the centre, your tart is done.

7. Optional Glaze: While tart is still hot, brush pears lightly with apricot glaze. This gives it a glossy, smooth finish.

  • Prep Time: 45 minutes
  • Cook Time: 55 minutes
  • Category: Tarts
  • Method: Baking
  • Cuisine: French

Keywords: Pear Almond Tart, French Pear Almond Tart, Pear Almond Tart Whole Wheat Crust

 

Cori Horton

Cooking in her home kitchen just outside Ottawa, Canada; Cori Horton is a food photographer and recipe blogger. A Cordon Bleu-trained Chef, Cori spent five years as the owner of Nova Scotia's Dragonfly Inn and has been sharing all things delicious - right here - since 2010.

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