Happy Birthday to Tuesdays with Dorie! The group has been going strong for a year now, and Dorie Greenspan herself was gracious enough to choose this week's recipe: French Pear Tart. Oh, I know what you're thinking. My title is French *Peach* Tart. Well, I had a slight mental lapse while buying the canned fruit and just grabbed the peaches. (Probably because I'm not really a huge fan of pears... although I'm sure they're delicious in this dessert.) Luckily, Dorie's inevitable "Playing Around" section also suggests peaches, so it all worked out :)
I was really, really pleased with how this came out! I didn't really know what to expect, since I'd never had this almond cream-type of filling before, but it was delicious, with a chewy/crunchy top and creamy interior. The peaches added a very nice sweet and fruity counterpoint.
The tart shell was a par-baked recipe of Dorie's sweet tart dough, which we also used in La Palette's Strawberry Tart. This time, to avoid cleaning the food processor twice for once recipe, I made the dough by hand with a dough cutter. It was much easier than I expected, and I'll probably be doing it more often!
The almond cream consisted of butter, sugar, ground blanched almonds, a little flour and cornstarch, an egg yolk, and some rum. Dorie recommended assembling the cream in a food processor in that order, creaming the butter and sugar, adding the almonds till smooth, then the dry ingredients, then the yolk, and finally the lovely, lovely rum.
Ingredient note: I used very finely ground almond flour, which came out to be 60g for the required 3/4 cup.
Here are the non-pears:
Dorie says to drain and pat the fruit dry, or else the cream won't set during baking.
I had let the cream sit in the fridge overnight, so by the time I assembled the tart for baking, it was very thick and almost batter-like in consistency.
The instruction to "thinly slice crosswise" kind of threw me for a loop, but after a couple of google searches, I figured out what it meant :)
Here I am with the assembled tart. Check out my apron — it was a Christmas gift from A.! He played around with my logo and put it on a zazzle apron. Such a cute idea :) And I forgive him for getting my URL slightly wrong ;)
Here is the tart, fresh out of the oven. The peaches sank a bit, which just makes me wish I had some huge, gorgeous peaches to make this with. I guess that will have to wait until the summer :)
Thanks so much to Dorie for choosing this recipe, and for having created such a wonderful book in the first place! Go check out her blog for the recipe and photos of her tart, and don't forget to check the rest of the TWD blogs for their creations!