As I’ve mentioned before, I’m not the biggest fan of hot or cooked fruit and have a particular aversion to things like crumbles and fruit pies. I’m slowly trying to try more things that I stubbornly didn’t like as a child, and actually I’m finding that I’m liking more and more! One fruit I am keen on in a pud is the humble pear, so I decided to try making a twist on the classic apple tart tatin but with pears. I used ready made puff pastry, but you could make your own….if you’ve got a whole day to spare! The tart turned out pretty well for a first attempt I thought. Next time I think I would caramelise the pears a little more for more colour and try to be a bit neater with tucking in my pastry around the sides – it’s quite tricky to do! definitely a recipe worth trying out, especially at a dinner party if you want to impress your friends, or cook your way to your mans’ heart..!
- 6 pears
- 100g caster sugar
- 100g butter
- 2 star anise
- 1 large cinnamon stick
- 2 tbsp brandy
- 500g block all-butter puff pastry
- Core the pears, then peel as neatly as possible and quarter.
- Tip the sugar, butter, star anise, and cinnamon into an ovenproof frying pan, about 20cm wide, and place over a high heat until bubbling. Shake the pan and stir the buttery sauce until it separates and the sugar caramelises to a toffee colour.
- Lay the pears in the pan, then cook in the sauce for 10-12 mins, tossing occasionally, until completely caramelised. Splash in the brandy and let it flambé, then set the pears aside. Remove the star anise and cinnamon.
- Heat oven to 200C. Roll the pastry out to the thickness of a £1 coin. Using a plate slightly larger than the top of the pan, cut out a circle, then press the edges of the circle of pastry to thin them out.
- When the pears have cooled slightly, arrange them in the pan, cut side up, in a floral shape, with the pears around the edge pointing inwards.
- Drape the pastry over the pears, then tuck the edges down the pan sides and under the fruit. Pierce the pastry a few times, then bake for 15 mins. If a lot of juice bubbles up the side of the pan, pour it off at this stage. Reduce oven to 180C and bake for 15 mins more until the pastry is golden. Leave the tart to stand for 10 mins, then invert it carefully onto a serving dish.
Happy eating 🙂