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Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Happy Anniversary TWD: French Pear Tart

pear-tart-caption

Well, I'll be dipped in melted Valrhona Le Noir Gastronomie 61% Chocolat! Not only does this week mark the first anniversary of Tuesdays with Dorie, but the woman who inspired it all, our beloved Dorie Greenspan, actually selected the recipe for us to bake this week for the occasion. Dorie chose her French Pear Tart, which she considers to be one of her favorite recipes from her baking bible, Baking: From My Home to Yours. It is a wonderful recipe - elegant, yet unfussy and oh, so French! I can see why she loves it so. Dorie explains that the tart is a classic of French pastry and a staple in patisseries all over France.

This particular French Pear Tart is also special to me as well. Not only was it the first recipe I ever tried from Dorie's excellent book, but it was also the first time I ever made a dough from scratch. Many of you may remember that when I started this blog, I was something of a "doughaphobe". If it didn't come out of the refrigerator case at the market, I didn't use it. When I saw that Dorie's Sweet Tart Dough required no rolling and could just be pressed into place, I breathed a sigh of relief and dove right in!

pear-tart3

Afterward, as I took that first bite into its burnished, buttery crust, and the creamy-cakey almond filling laced with delicate poached pears made its way past my lips, I knew I had stumbled upon something very, very good.

There are three elements to this tart: the sweet tart dough, which is basically a fancy cookie dough; an almond cream, which is another staple in French baking; and poached fresh or canned pears. Both the dough and the almond cream can be whizzed up in the food processor in no time flat. I was quite surprised to learn that not only are canned pears an acceptable option for this tart, but that they are widely and blatantly used by French bakers. Who am I to flout convention? I used canned pears too.

pear-tart4

When I served my tart, I drizzled a little butterscotch-caramel sauce over the top of each slice, to make it.....well.....over the top. And, it was!

To see a few hundred other French Pear Tarts, stop by and check out the Tuesdays with Dorie blogroll. If you'd like to try making this tart for yourself, the recipe can be found in Dorie's book and also on her web site. Try it. I promise you won't be disappointed.

C'est merveilleux!

54 comments:

Astra Libris said...

Oh my goodness, I am in awe of your beautiful tart... Your tart belongs in a museum, it's so gorgeous!

Karen said...

Sounds yummy - I was surprised by the canned pears! Beautiful presentation too!

Karen said...

Sounds yummy - I was surprised by the canned pears! Beautiful presentation too!

Jessica said...

Butterscotch caramel sauce . . . YUM! You found a way to make something that was already great even better. I'm dying to try it with the sauce now. Your tart looks fantastic!

LyB said...

Merveilleux, indeed! Butterscotch caramel sauce, now why didn't I think of that! :)

Madam Chow said...

This dessert has now become my husband's favorite. Who would have thought that such a simple thing would be so fantastic?

Tartelette said...

That brings back wonderful memories of many sunday dinners bak home! Gorgeous!

juju73 said...

oh.my.Lord.

I think I'm having palpitations...butterscotch caramel sauce would be DIVINE on this tart! GENIUS!

Manggy said...

Oh, pears and caramel is a combination near and dear to me :) I wonder if a slice'll last in the mail? ;)

The Food Hunter said...

Oh My! that looks so good.

Cakelaw said...

OMG - this tart was terrrifc on its own, but with butterscotch caramel sauce, it is so good as to be X-rated.

Jodie said...

Oooh, that sauce sounds wonderful! Great job!

Emily Rose said...

mmm...looks wonderful with that butterscotch sauce! I used fresh pears and mine was delicious- but you better believe that I'm going to try it with the canned too! How many fancy tarts can you make with canned fruit?!

Amy said...

Oh wow! Definitely the best looking tart I've seen today!! I love that last picture!!

-Amy
www.singforyoursupperblog.com

Isabelle said...

superbement gourmand ...surtout avec ce caramel :)

Maryann said...

Isn't that pretty!

Kimberly Johnson said...

Beautiful tart! Glad you're overcoming your fear of dough!

rainbowbrown said...

Oh, over the top looks so delicious.

Bria said...

Stunning tart! The butterscotch caramel sauce would have been delicious too.

pinkstripes said...

Your tart looks absolutely amazing!! And the butterscotch caramel takes it over the edge. YUM!

Steph said...

Your tart looks gorgeous! It looks perfect!! I agree, it's so sophisticated, yet unfussy.

slush said...

I agree, it looks absolutely perfect. I love the addition of the caramel sauce too. Fab idea!

vibi said...

Oh! How I love that background that puts the emphasis on the simplicity and beauty of your very darn close to perfect tart! Amazing!

Patsyk said...

Stunning! I love how you took it "over the top" by adding the caramel sauce. No one could resist it, I'm sure!

Peter M said...

The tart is mucho beatiful and the photo, the background...it's PeeWee Herman! Love it!

Proud Italian Cook said...

Canned pears, who'd a thought!! Looks outragiously good!

Gretchen Noelle said...

The first recipe you made from the book?!? I had never even noticed it before. Your tart looks terrific!!

Rebecca said...

Mmmmm, pears with a butterscotch-caramel sauce. Can't argue with that.

Katrina said...

Beautiful! I knew yours would be. Hey, I made mine with a little ice cream and caramel drizzle on top! SO good!
Love it!

Half Baked said...

Oooh drool! That is one gorgeous tart! The caramel sauce definitly puts this one over the top!!

Nina Timm said...

Over the top it is, but who gives a d.... With a dollop of fresh cream, I could be elevated into tart heaven!

City Girl said...

That looks amazing :)

chocolatechic said...

Heavens to Betsy!

Your tart looks superb!

The Short (dis)Order Cook said...

Gorgeous. What a nice TWD celebration.

Canned pears? Why not? Whose to argue with the French?

Karen @ Mignardise said...

Looks like it came from a French patisserie - gorgeous and delicious I'm sure.

Chez Us said...

Looks fantastic especially with the gooey sticky sauce on top - YUM!!

I loved this recipe as well it brought me back to Paris with every bite!!!

Happy New Year!

maggie said...

Oh my, it looks so good with that caramel sauce.

Rhiani said...

The butterscotch caramel sauce sounds like a great addition and your tart is beautiful!

Mila said...

That looks heavenly!

Jeena said...

Happy new year.

Your pear tart looks fabulous. :-)

noble pig said...

That last shot has me drooling. I can only imagine what that sauce did to an already perfect dessert! Wow.

TeaLady said...

Yowzza!! Batman. That tart is absolutely beautiful. So many TWDers used so many different designs when they fanned their pears, but yours is the only one I saw like this.

MaryBeth said...

Absolutely wonderful looking tart.

Linda said...

Your tart is a treat for the eyes (as well as your tummy)!!!

Linda
www.tendercrumb.blogspot.com

CookiePie said...

Oooooh - that looks so luscious and beautiful! The sauce dribbling down the sides is just amazing.

michelle of bleeding espresso said...

YUM! Gorgeous and tasty too I'm sure :)

Susan, in case you haven't heard, please do check out Bren's contest over at FlaNboyant Eats...she's giving away five of her favorite things including a pressure cooker (I know nothing about pressure cooking but I'd sure love to learn) ;)

Good luck!

Jules Someone said...

Gorgeous tart! Excellent work.

mikky said...

Cheers to all of you... lovely tart you have there... :)

Belinda said...

Oh my gosh, Susan! This tart looks truly unbelievably amazing! Wow! And your photos have always been gorgeous, but when did you turn into a professional photographer?! These photos are more than magazine-worthy!

Meg said...

Simply beautiful!

jackie said...

I love that first photo - typically busy backgrounds don't work well in food shots, but you've thrown that rule out the window...and succeeded!
Plus the tart is making my mouth water ;)

~ j

Babycakes said...

oh looks wonderful! Caramel goes so well with apples and pears.

we are never full said...

butterscotch caramel sauce? that would make it for me. this really looks tempting.

Margie said...

I come back to your blog again and again, I can't wait to find some time to try some of your recipes. Thanks for sharing!