Pear tart sitting on a wooden chopping board, with a piece removed a bowl of nut crumb to the side

Pear & ginger tart with a rye hazelnut sweet crust, stained glass pears & spiced sugar hazelnut crumbs

 

A delightful alternative to plum pudding for those that would like something different in the festive season with this eye-catching stained glass pear tart.

 

Ingredients:

Rye Hazelnut Sweet Crust

100g wholewheat rye flour

100g plain white flour

50g blanched hazelnuts

100g cold butter

2 egg yolks

3 tbs spiced vanilla & allspice sugar (or plain sugar is fine)

pinch salt

2-3 tbs cold water

 

Ginger Frangipane

50g soft butter

50g sugar

1 egg + the two egg whites left over from the crust

120g ground almonds (you could also up the hazelnut by using hazelnut flour here but I went with almond as I wanted the stem ginger to shine through)

2 tbs minced crystallised or stem ginger in syrup

1 tbs spiced vanilla & allspice sugar (or syrup from the stem ginger if using)

2 tbs plain flour

 

Stained Glass Pears

2-3 conference pears thinly sliced through the stem (seeds, stalk and all!)

100g sugar

100ml water

1-2 tbs spiced vanilla & allspice sugar (or syrup from the stem ginger if you don’t have any)

2 tbs melted butter & 1 tsp spiced sugar (for drizzling over the reserved tart pear slices before baking)

 

Spiced Sugar Hazelnut Crumbs

2-3 tbs roasted blanched almonds

1-2 tsp spiced vanilla & allspice sugar

crumbs leftover from trimming the cooked crust

 

Method:

Stained Glass Pears

  • Heat your oven to 180C (this is my aga baking oven temp so its probably around 160C in a fan oven)
  • Line and lightly oil a sheet of parchment on a flat baking tray
  • Slice the pears & toss in a little lemon juice to stop them going brown
  • Pick out a few nice centre pieces with the stalk to turn into the stained glass & set aside the rest for the tart
  • Boil the sugar & water till is reaches the jam temperature on a thermometer – around 110C
  • Quickly throw in the spiced sugar – stir
  • Quickly but gently off the heat, place the pear slices into the syrup & swirl to penetrate the fruit
  • Place on the lined parchment and bake in the oven for 30 mins and then turn down the oven to 100C & bake for a further 30 mins turning carefully now & again till you achieve the desired stained glass effect
  • Cool & set aside

 

Rye Hazelnut Sweet Crust

  • In a food processor blitz the blanched hazelnuts to create a flour
  • Pulse together the ground hazelnuts, the plain & rye flour, spiced sugar, salt briefly
  • Add the cold butter in cubes & pulse together to form a crumbly dough
  • Add the egg yolks & 2 tbs of cold water & pulse together briefly to bring it all together
  • On a cold work surface lightly knead the pastry & then place inside a plastic bag & flatten to a disc
  • Place in the fridge to relax the pastry dough while you make the frangipane

 

Ginger Frangipane

  • Beat all the ingredients together till you achieve a smooth homogenous mass
  • Set aside

 

Rye Hazelnut Sweet Crust

  • Heat your oven to 180C (this is my aga baking oven temp so its probably around 160C in a fan oven)
  • Roll out the rested pastry dough on a lightly floured surface – its quite a light textured crumbly pastry but go as thin as you can as this makes for a nicer finish (I could have gone a bit thinner tbh!)
  • Roll the dough onto your roll pin & lay over a loose bottomed round tart tin (mine was 9inch/23cm)
  • Press the pastry into the dish leaving the excess overhanging & prick the bottom with a fork
  • Line the pastry case with baking beans & blind bake for 20 mins
  • Remove the beans & bake for a further 20 mins
  • Remove the crust and whilst still warm use a bread knife to trim the overhanging pastry edges – reserve the leftover crumbs for later
  • Fill the trimmed tart crust with the frangipane
  • Arrange the reserved raw sliced pears in a pile in the middle & drizzle over the melted butter & spiced sugar
  • Bake in the oven for 30-35 mins or until the frangipane is lightly coloured & the pears look a little caramelised

 

Assembling the stained glass pear tart…

  • Cool the tart in the tin for 10 minutes & then carefully remove from the tart tin onto your serving platter/board
  • While this is happening roast some whole blanched hazelnuts for a few minutes till lightly golden
  • Roughly chop the hazelnuts with the leftover tart crumbs and a teaspoon or so of the spiced sugar
  • Arrange the stained glass pear spices on top of the tart & scatter with the spiced hazelnut crumbs
  • Serve with a really good quality full fat creme fraiche, softly whipped cream sweetened with spiced sugar, vanilla/ginger ice cream, brandy custard – take your pick… 

 

 

 

 

A slice of pear held up to the light to give an effect of a piece of stained glass
pear tart on a wooden chopping board, with a knife, whole pears and a bowl with nut crumbs

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