Pear Tart


 This recipe is a bit more complex than my past offerings, but for the more ambitions among you the result is a tart that never fails to win acclaim. To create the pastry, put 1 2/3 cup flour, a pinch of salt, a large pinch of sugar, one egg yolk and 1/4 cup of butter into your food processor until it’s lightly mixed. Then add a small glass of water and continue stirring for a few seconds until it’s mixed. Roll the mixture onto a floured surface and then place into a tart pan with a removable bottom. Cover and cool in the fridge for two hours. Next open 3 cans of Bartlett pear halves, drain the liquid and dry the pears on paper towels. Keep on the side. To create the pastry cream you’ll need 2 cups of milk, 1 vanilla bean, 5 egg yolks and 3 1/2 tablespoons of flour. Put the milk and vanilla bean (split the bean) in a pot and bring to a boil. Mix the yolks in a bowl until they’re a pale yellow, then add flour. Remove the vanilla bean and pour the boiling milk into the egg mixture, whisking constantly.  Return the mixture to the pot and simmer, stirring until the flour is cooked—it should have the consistency of custard. Put in a bowl to cool.

Now lay wax paper at the bottom of the tart pan. Put weights on the bottom, which could be rice or beans so the pastry doesn’t puff up while it cooks (blind bake). Bake at 375 degrees for 20 minutes. Remove the paper and the weights and add 1/3 cup dark chocolate chips cups—I use 60% cocoa. Put it back in the oven so the chocolate melts for 2-3 minutes.  Take out and spread the chocolate around.  Let it cool.  Add the custard on top, then place the half pears on top of the custard.  Put back in the oven for 15 minutes until golden on top.

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