This recipe by Thomas Haas of Vancouver’s Thomas Haas Chocolates & Patisserie has a few moving parts, but don’t let that deter you for making it at home. A straightforward, overnight shortbread crust, tart jam (if you can’t find cassis, try substituting the cassis jam with store-bought blackcurrant jelly), and almond cream form the base for a tumble of cinnamon-spiced pears that need not be picture-perfect to be utterly delicious.
Serves one nine-inch tart.
125g cassis (blackcurrant purée, available in speciality food stores or on Amazon)
150g granulated sugar
Combine the ingredients in a saucepan and bring to a boil. Stir and let cool.
200g icing sugar
200g blanched ground almonds
1. Ensure all ingredients are at room temperature.
2. Cream the butter and icing sugar with the paddle attachment of a blender.
3. Add the almonds and cornstarch, alternating with the eggs to the creamed mixture until just combined.
80g granulated sugar
pinch of salt
120g pastry flour
120g bread flour
1. Cream the sugar, butter and salt. Add the flours. Do not overmix.
2. Add the eggs. Do not overmix. Wrap the dough in plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
4 ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cut in half and core removed
28g slivered almonds
1. Line a 9-inch (23 cm) tart shell with shortbread dough.
2. Spread a thin layer of cassis jam on the bottom of the pastry dough shell. Then pipe/spread a layer of soft almond cream to ¾ full.
3. Vertically slice the pear halves and place on top of the almond cream to cover the top of tart.
4. Place some slivered almonds on top of the pears and dust with cinnamon.
5. Bake at 325°F (160°C) for 45 to 60 minutes or until middle of the tart is set and the crust is of golden colour.
6. Serve with your favourite vanilla ice cream.
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