French Almond Pear Tart
I live in a box. Rather, I live in numerous boxes. As Ben and I pack up to move (in nine days!!), I realize how temporary homes can be. I will be moving for the fifth time since I first called Montreal my home, and each time I feel like an uprooted tree…
But, of course, I’m sure fresh roots will run deep in this future apartment. I can’t wait to share it with you guys. The landscape of my pictures will change! Speaking of pictures, have you seen these? This tart is absolutely wonderful.
The first time I had this delectable delight was when I was in Paris back in my high-school days for a ten-day trip through France and Italy. It was a trip guided by a brave French teacher and perhaps fifteen students. We had quite an adventure exploring those foreign cities and cultures, but I remember when I first sank my teeth into an almond pear tart.
Buttery flaky shortbread crust, cradling a sweet aromatic almond filling and thick slices of vanilla-poached pears. After making this delicious treat, I can certainly see why it is coveted by the French!
Oh, and don’t shy away from what seems like a long ingredient list. The crust and pears can be made days in advance. It is worth the prep, and will certainly be impressive for house guests!
Pear and Almond Tart
- 1 and 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup granulated sugar
- 1/4 tsp salt
- 1 stick plus 1 tablespoon (9 tablespoons) of unsalted butter, cold and cut into pieces
- 1 large egg yolk
- 4 cups water
- 1 and 1/4 cups granulated sugar
- 1 and 1/2 tbsp lemon juice (optional)
- 3 bosc pears, peeled and sliced in half lengthwise
- 1 vanilla pod (if you have one)
- 6 ounces almond paste
- 2 tsp sugar
- 2 tsp all-purpose flour
- 3 ounces (5 tablespoons) of salted butter, room temperature
- 1 large egg plus 1 egg white
- 2 tsp almond extract
- In a food processor, pulse the dry ingredients just a couple times to mix. Add butter and process until lumpy. Add the egg yolk and pulse just until combined.
- Press the crust into a tart pan, but not so hard that you get rid of that delicious crumbly texture. Press just hard enough so that it stays together.
- Cover it with plastic and place in the freezer for at least 30 minutes (best is overnight).
- When you’re ready to bake the crust, cover it with aluminum foil and place it in a preheated 350F oven for about 25 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 15 minutes or until golden brown.
- Meanwhile, begin to prepare your pears. Bring your water, sugar, and lemon juice to a boil. Add the pears and reduce to a simmer. Cook for about 20 minutes or until stabbing the pears with a fork doesn’t offer too much resistance. Keep them in the fridge in the syrup until you’re ready to add them to the tart. Can be made 1-3 days ahead.
- For the almond filling, whirl all ingredients in your food processor until well-mixed.
- Preheat oven to 350F. Slice the pears cross wise if desired, and remove the seeds and pits.
- Pour the almond filling into the baked pie crust. Lay the pears on top of the filling. It’s okay if it gets sticky, the filling is runny!
- Bake for 20 minutes or until the almond filling turns a beautiful golden colour. Allow to cool before serving.
Recipe adapted from this one.