15 November, 2015
Red wine poached pear tart
A classic dessert which looks magnificent and sophisticated, yet very simple to make. This is one of the tarts that was in my bucket list for a long time. I had postponed doing this as it is very time consuming. Poaching pears, making pastry, making pastry cream… thought not very complex, that is a lot of work.
I had to prepare a day ahead. I made the pastry cream the previous day and put is in the fridge to set. Poaching the pear was the fun part, at least for me. I didn’t use any recipe for this. I just used a fruity read wine and a cinnamon stick with some sugar to make it syrupy. The main aim is to get the colour and the taste is a bonus.
It’s better to let pears soak in the syrup over night. What I did was, I sliced the already poached pear halves in to thin slices and let them soak in syrup for an hour or two in the refrigerator. I turned the slices at intervals to speed up the process. Once I am happy with the colour, I drained the slices on a paper towel to remove excess moisture.
Once all the components are ready, it is just a matter of few minutes for the tart to be finished. I was a bit worried about the pastry becoming soggy, so I have painted inside of the pastry case with melted chocolate. This works as a barrier between pastry cream and the pastry shell, helping it to retain its dryness for longer.
The only downside with this is that it doesn’t keep longer in fridge. Once cut, the tart gets messy. So this is best when you are serving it to a crowd. If there is going to be a next time ever, I would use almond cream instead of the pastry cream and bake the tart before decorating. That way I would be able to keep it for longer.
- 2-3 whole pears peeled and cored
- 1/2 bottle fruity red wine
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1/2 cups sugar
- 1/2 cup melted chocolate
- Sweet short pastry to cover an 8 inch tart tin
- 2 cups of crème patissiere (pastry cream)
- In a heavy bottomed saucepan heat wine, sugar, cinnamon stick over medium heat. Bring to boil.
- Add the halved pears and reduce heat, let simmer for until pears are soft. Be careful not to overcook pears.
- Take off the heat and remove pears and set aside.
- Return the liquid back on to stove and let it reduce to a thick syrup.
- Let the syrup cool down.
- Dip the pears in the cooled syrup and refrigerate overnight or at least 4 hours.
- Slice the pears lengthwise and arrange on a shallow dish. Cover with the same syrup and refrigerate for a further few hours.
- Preheat oven to 180 °C.
- Roll out the shortcrust pastry and cover an 8 inch tart tin, cover with parchment paper, press with baking weights and blind bake for 10 minutes.
- Remove paper and weights and bake for a further 10 minutes until shell is golden brown.
- Let it cool on a wire rack.
- Once tart shell is cooled, brush the inside with melted chocolate and refrigerate to set.
- Fill the tart with pastry cream and arrange pear slices, to cover entire tart.
- Refrigerate for at least an hour before serving.
- Best eaten on the same day of making.