The dishes are washed and the leftovers dealt with, it’s nearly time for the tree to come down. But, for the next few days the pressure is off. Now, with not a turkey bone or slice of goose in sight, it’s about curling up in front of the fire and watching re-runs whilst indulging in the new cook books from under the tree.
I’ve planned several phantom dinner parties and baked, in my mind, wonderful desserts and cakes. The first foray back into the kitchen was to make Pear Tarte Tartin with evaporated milk ice cream. Tarte Tartins are very popular in the Glam Household, that wonderful golden caramel and flaky crisp pastry make this a perfect dish for the sweet toothed Glam hoard, with banana being a distinct favourite. This Pear Tartin is based on John Campbell’s recipe from Formulas For Flavour. An experiment in using almost whole pears stuffed with mascarpone and then topped with puff pastry.
Pear Tart Tartin With Mascarpone
Makes two. Double up recipe for four
- 1 packet of rolled puff pastry
- 100g caster sugar
- 2 pears, the dumpy shape is better, such as Comice
- 65g salted butter
- 50g mascarpone cheese
- 2 teaspoons sifted icing sugar (I use a tea strainer for sifting small quantities)
- Using two pieces of foil cover the bottom of the two ‘drain pipe’ moulds as in the picture
- Unroll the puff pastry and using a 10cm cutter cut two circles, cover a plate with baking paper and put the discs on the plate and into the fridge. (re-roll the remaining puff pastry and keep for another recipe)
- Place a heavy bottomed pan on the hob to heat up. When hot, pour in the sugar and shake gently to evenly distribute the sugar in the pan, keep an eye on the pan
- Meanwhile peel the pear and cut the top (stalk end) into a dome shape
- Using a teaspoon scoop out the core
- When the sugar has melted and reached a rich caramel colour pour into the foil ended drain pipe moulds and top with the butter, sharing it equally between each mould
- Put the pear into the mould with the hollowed out end facing up and place in the oven for about 20 minutes
- Mix the sugar into the mascarpone cheese, form into two balls
- Remove pastry from the fridge immediately before removing pears from the oven
- Remove the pears from the oven, place a mascarpone ball into the hollowed out core area of the pear and top with the pastry. tuck in the edges
- Return to the oven for about 10 minutes or until the pastry is golden brown and puffy
- Remove from the oven and invert onto a plate, with care as the caramel is hot.
- Eat whilst warm