Fresh Pear Tart – Gluten-free, Dairy-free


FOTCM Member
Baked pears, in a syrup containing wine and spices were recorded in Ancient Roman times. The term 'tart' occurs in the 14th century cookbook, Forme of Cury, which was a compilation of recipes, although the relevant recipes were for savoury items containing meat. However, note that a mixture of savoury and sweet items was quite common in medieval dishes. There was, however, a perceptible trend towards making and eating purely sweet tarts. The earliest printed evidence found for pear pie was in 1615 in an English cookbook, Gervase Markham's English Huswife, which contained a recipe for ‘A warden pie’. Warden was a particular kind of English pear. In 1651, La Varenne's Cuisiner Francaise contained several savoury and sweet tarts. And, 18th century cookbooks often contained recipes for puddings that today would be classed as tarts.

There are several claims for the French creation of the famous Pear Tart, La tarte Bourdaloue, a cousin of this Pear Tart. First was that of the pastry chef, Fasquelle, who settled in the rue Bourdaloue in the 9th arrondissement of Paris, in the 19th Century. Secondly, the celebrated pâtissier, Coquelin, bought La Pâtisserie Bourdaloue (which still exists and is still baking today) in 1909, and created his famous pear tart with frangipane or almond cream. Thirdly, the first written version of the recipe for La tarte Bourdaloue was given in the book, Le Grand Livre de la Cuisine, by Prosper Montagné and Prosper Salles, which was published in 1929.

This recipe, which in some ways resembles La tarte Bourdaloue (the pears are arranged in a different pattern), is based on a recipe given in Bruce Healy and Paul Buget’s book, Mastering the Art of French Pastry, (New York, Barron’s, 1984), for a Tarte aux Poires. The pears are first poached in a light syrup, before being placed on a powdered nut cream, that is spread on top of a raw sweet crust type pastry shell, and then baked. Usually, the powdered nut cream is based upon almonds, although other nuts may be used, as shown in this recipe, which uses pecans. However, in terms of other nuts, walnuts are not an option as they too greasy to be of effective use when powdered. The pastry cream is based on the use of Hemp milk, rather than dairy milk, for those who are lactose intolerant.

The fresh picked pears need to be prepared and poached ahead of the final assembly, as does the French pastry cream, that is a component of the powdered nut (pecan) cream.

Sweet crust type Pastry dough shell
Pecan cream
Poached pears
Superfine cane sugar

Day 0
First, prepare and then poach the pears, followed by preparing the sweet crust type pastry dough, and finally make the French pastry cream.

Preparing and poaching the pears

Pears 2500g approximately (some are left over for another use)
Cold water 1kg
White wine 1kg (Sauvignon was used in this case)
Cane sugar 1200g
Lemon juice 2 lemons plus 1 more
Vanilla essence 2tsp

In a large bowl (1) add plenty of cold water and the juice of one lemon.
Prepare the pears. First by gently peeling off the skin using a vegetable peeler. Then cut the pear in half, vertically; cut out the stems with a vee cut, top and bottom; and finally scoop out the core with a melon baller (or with a 1 tsp measuring spoon). Place the prepared pear in the bowl (1) of lemon water (this will stop the pears from browning). Repeat the process with the rest of the pears.

In a large saucepan (2), with a capacity of at least 4 litres, add the water and white wine, the cane sugar, lemon juice, and vanilla essence. Bring the mixture to a boil, ensuring that all of the cane sugar is melted.

Add the prepared pears to the boiling syrup. Place a saucepan lid, that just fits inside the saucepan (2), or a round wire cooling rack that fits inside, on top of the boiled syrup and pears. This will ensure that the pears stay submerged.
Bring the syrup back to a simmer, then reduce the heat and continue to simmer very gently until the pears are softened and can be easily pierced with the tip of a skewer. Note however, the pears still need to be a little on the firm side, or on cooling in the syrup, they will become too soft and turn to a mushy mess. The required simmering time for this type of pear was 12 minutes.

Remove the saucepan from the heat and let the syrup and pears cool overnight. Then the saucepan can be transferred and kept in the refrigerator until needed. The poached pears will keep in the refrigerator for between 3 – 4 days. Ensure that the pears are submerged in the syrup, and use clingfilm to ensure that the ‘submerging’ lid is covered airtight with the sides of the saucepan.

Preparing the sweet crust type pastry dough

Gluten-free pastry flour mix* 370g (enough for a 23cm (9in tart pan, and for leftovers)
Gum Arabic 2tsp
Salt 1/4tsp
Sugar 55g
Butter 205g (softened, room temp, cut in pieces)
Apple Cider Vinegar 1 1/2tsp (7ml)
Egg (slightly beaten) 100g (approx. 2 large – if necessary, add from another egg to make up weight)
Water (cold, if required) 5 – 10ml (1 – 2tsp)

*Gluten-free pastry flour mix: Brown rice flour 290g; Sweet rice flour 150g; Potato starch 75g; Tapioca starch 210g; Arrowroot powder; 35g. Total weight: 760g

Sift flour, add Gum Arabic and mix thoroughly in a bowl.
In a mixer bowl cream butter and salt, at a medium speed for ½ – 1min
Scrape down sides and bottom of mixer bowl; add sugar and combine at low speed for ½min
Add 50g flour, and combine at low speed.
Add Apple cider vinegar; gradually add slightly beaten eggs, and then 50g flour, beating at a low speed until the mixture comes together.
Gradually add rest of the flour, occasionally stopping the machine to scrape down sides and bottom of the bowl, restart and mix until the pastry dough comes together (and if necessary add 1 – 2tsp water, or, more likely, 1 - 3 tbsp of the flour mix (especially during the summer or when it is humid) and allow time to combine) – it may look bitty, will start to come together and clean the sides of the bowl, and will look shiny when handled and pressed together.
Lay a piece of cling film/plastic wrap on a pastry board, place the pastry dough on top of it, press into a ½in (13mm) thick rectangle and cover with cling film/plastic wrap
Chill pastry dough in a refrigerator overnight. The pastry dough will keep in the fridge for a couple of days, or in the freezer for 1 month (if you have frozen it, when you want to use it, take it out and let it rest for 1 hr to come to room temperature)

French Pastry Cream
Ingredients: (
enough to fill the bottom of a 23cm (9in) tart pan)
Gluten-free Flour mix* 10g
Cornstarch 10g
Cane Sugar 64g (32g plus 32g)
Eggs 66g (1 large egg plus 1 large egg yolk)
Hemp milk 250ml (60ml plus 190ml)
Butter 25g
Vanilla essence 1/2tsp
Kirsch 1Tbsp

In a bowl (1) add flour, Cornstarch, 32g Cane sugar, and mix. Add 60ml Hemp milk, eggs and whisk together to form a smooth, lemon coloured mixture (the flour and starch are used to bind and stabilize the custard mix).

In a saucepan (2) add 190ml Hemp milk, 32g Cane sugar, butter and vanilla essence. Stir together with a wooden spoon. Place over medium heat and bring to a fast simmer, yet avoid boiling.

Turn off heat. Slowly pour half of the hot milk mixture (2) into the egg mixture (1) and stir constantly with a wire whisk. Pour the resultant mixture (1) back into the saucepan containing the remaining milk mixture (2) and whisk; add 1Tbsp of Kirsch and incorporate.

Turn heat back on to medium and stir the pastry cream mixture with a wooden spoon until it is thoroughly blended and smooth. Make sure that wooden spoon reaches everywhere - bottom, sides, and corners, so that the mixture does not burn. Keep the spoon in constant motion. Once you sense that the mixture is slightly thick on the bottom of the saucepan (look at bottom of spoon), remove it from the heat.

Off heat, continue stirring the pastry cream mixture for a further minute, until the mixture is thick, smooth and uniform (this allows a slow and even coagulation of the eggs and will produce a creamy texture).

Return the saucepan to the heat and bring the pastry cream mixture to the boil (to fully incorporate the cornstarch) whilst stirring constantly (this will inactivate the yolk amylase enzyme and will extract starch, and the egg proteins will bond strongly). Cook for a further 1 – 2 mins to overcome any resultant starch flavour.

Pour the pastry cream into a cold bowl (3) (otherwise the pastry cream will continue to cook) and place into a larger bowl (4). Fill bowl (4) with ice cold water to height where pastry cream bowl (3) just begins to float. Initially continue stirring, then stir only occasionally and minimally as the pastry cream cools (as stirring breaks developing starch networks, resulting in a thinner cream).

Once cool, and if not using immediately, cover surface with wax paper, or buttered parchment paper (this will ensure that the pastry cream does not form a skin). Refrigerate for up to 4 days. Pastry cream cannot be frozen, as the starch and protein bonds will break down. Also, in the process of defrosting, the pastry cream will weep, producing moisture, resulting in a runny, rather than stiff, consistency.

On the Day
Roll out the sweet crust type pastry dough into a shell that fits the tart pan; make the pecan cream; and then assemble the tart for baking.

Preheat the oven to 220C for 45 minutes.

Rolling out the pastry dough shell and lining the tart pan

When you take the dough out of the refrigerator, and before you begin to roll it, tap it a few times with the rolling pin, to begin to loosen it up).
Place a rectangular piece of parchment paper, at least 4in (10cm) larger than the tart pan, on top of a silmat, worksurface, or pastry board, dust evenly and lightly with flour, along with dusting the rolling pin. The parchment paper serves a couple of functions as will be explained later.
Cut pastry dough in two, in the proportions of two thirds to one third (place the one third portion (covered) back in the refrigerator); dust hands with flour; roll the dough into a ball and flatten, then roll the pastry three times in one direction, evenly, gently and briskly (i.e., confidently); rotate the pastry a ¼ turn (ensuring that the pastry is not stuck to the board, lift with your hands, turn over and re-flour if necessary); and repeat; and repeat until the pastry forms a rough circle at least 33cm (13in) in diameter and approximately 1/4in (5mm) thick (inevitably the dough will roll into an imperfect circle, and there will be cracks that have a habit of expanding as you roll – just trim off the excess and use to repair any areas short of the required size, press scraps into the gaps and roll in to get the required shape); repeat with the other thirds of dough, and remaining half. The scraps can be rolled up and re-rolled - the pastry is very forgiving – and used for repair work, or saved.

Now come the tricky parts, first, moving the rolled dough to the tart pan and fitting it in. Even with gluten flours this is tricky as the pastry will almost certainly crack – this is OK, it can be repaired. There are a couple of methods that can be used (the choice is up to you, both work).

Lightly grease, with well-softened butter, the tart pan and removeable base.

Moving method 1:
First, make sure that the base is central to the tart pan; place a tart pan and its removeable base, upside down, in the centre of the rolled pastry dough; keeping a firm hand on the pan and its base make a quick and confident flip over, and the pastry dough should droop into the centre of the right-side up tart pan; remove the, top parchment paper.

Moving method 2:
First, make sure that the base is central to the tart pan. Ensure that the parchment paper underneath the pastry dough is well floured and can slide about. Move it, and the rolled pastry dough over to the tart pan and base, holding one edge in your hand pull away the parchment paper with the other hand, and the pastry dough should slide off and droop into the centre of the tart pan, just make sure that the base is central to the tart pan before pulling away the parchment paper.

Fitting the pastry dough in the tart pan:
In one hand, gather the edges of pastry dough and move them inwards (to help the pastry dough droop even more into the tart pan) whilst pressing the dough into the bottom with the other hand; using your fingers move dough into the bottom edges of the ring so that there is a tight fit and work around the pan (inevitably the dough near the rim will begin to tear in some places, just reattach); press the dough to the tart pan sides. Fold over some of the dough to double the thickness of the sides, and smoothly press into the existing dough; using a paring (or narrow bladed) knife trim excess dough to leave a flat edge; where dough is missing, or does not reach the tip of the rim, roll/pinch together some of the excess dough and fit to cover gaps/make up thickness/reinforce the top edge, and smoothing it out; using the paring knife, or similar, slide the blade between the dough and the top of the tart pan side so that there is no dough on the edge of the rim (this will make it easier to lift the ring off the baked tart).

Prick the pastry base a few times (to stop the pastry base lifting it whilst baking).

Place the pastry dough filled tart pan, in a refrigerator for 30mins before baking (for the butter/pastry to harden).

Making the Pecan Cream

Butter (sliced) 150g
Pecan TPT blanc** 330g
Cane sugar (superfine) 30g
Eggs (2 large) 100g
French pastry cream 230g
Cornstarch 50g
Alcoholic spirit 2Tbsp (optional)

First of all, it is necessary to make the Pecan TPT blanc**.
Ingredients (Pecan TPT blanc):
Chopped Pecans 250g
Cane sugar 250g

Method (Pecan TPT blanc):
Combine half (125g) of the chopped pecans with a quarter of the cane sugar (65g) in a food processor, or if using a coffee grinder or blender, use 65g of pecans with 65g of cane sugar to avoid caking.
Process until the pecans are finely ground. Stop as soon as the mixture starts caking around the sides of the food processor, or below the blades in a coffee grinder or blender.

For any pieces that do not powder, lift out and process with the remaining quarter of the sugar. Repeat until all of the pecans are powdered.

Pour the ground or powdered pecan sugar mixture into a bowl and stir with a rubber or silicon spatula, or whisk with a small wire whisk, to fluff up the mixture and to avoid caking.

Cover airtight and store for up to a month at room temperature, or preferably, store in a refrigerator.

Method (Pecan Cream):
In the bowl (1) of a stand mixer fitted with a paddle beater, add the sliced butter, TPT blanc and superfine sugar. Cream the mixture, at medium speed until it is cream coloured and light, approximately 2 minutes. Scrape down the sides as necessary.
Add the eggs, one at a time and combine, approximately 30 secs each.
Add the French pastry cream, and beat at low speed to combine. Finally, add in the cornstarch and combine. If the optional Alcoholic Spirit is used, add it now and incorporate.

Scoop the Pecan cream into a bowl (2), cover with clingfilm, and store in a refrigerator until ready to use.

Take the poached pears out of the refrigerator and gently dry.

Line a spare tart pan with clingfilm. This is to get an idea of how many pear halves, and what size, will fit in the pan. Take a poached pear and place it in the tart pan with the fat side next to the pan side, and the stem side radiating towards the centre; repeat with more pears. Note that less pears will be required than fit in the pan, due to the thickness of the crust. Find a roundish pear half that will fit in the middle.

Remove the pastry dough filled tart pan, from refrigerator. Take the bowl of Pecan Cream out of the refrigerator.

Using a silicon spatula, fill the pastry dough shell with a layer of Pecan cream, use approximately 300g, and spread evenly over the base of the shell with a thin, offset metal spatula.

Take a chopping board, place a pear half on it, slide a thin metal offset spatula underneath, and with a knife cut the pear crosswise (perpendicular to the core) into slices 6mm (1/4in) thick, without separating the slices.

Using the same spatula, still underneath the sliced pear, and move the whole sliced pear onto the Pecan cream, placing it as though it was a spoke of a wheel, radiating out from the centre, with the stem end facing towards the centre of the tart, and the fat end of the pear at the tart side. Repeat to fill the pan. Check that the selected ‘round’ pear will still fit in the middle. Place it on the chopping board, and using a plain round pastry cutter, trim it to size. Slice it into 6mm (1/4in) slices; using the spatula, place it in the centre of the tart. Press down, towards the edge of the tart, gently on each sliced pear half to fan out the pear like a pack of cards.

Place 2Tbsp (or, between 25-100g, depending on taste, but 2Tbsp should be plenty) superfine sugar in a small sieve, and dust the superfine sugar over the fruit.

Place the filled tart pan in the oven, and reduce the temperature to 200C.
ake until the rim of the tart shell browns lightly, approximately 20 – 25 minutes. Then, reduce the temperature to 180C, and continue baking for at least 20 minutes longer. The Pear tart is baked when the tops of the pears and the Pecan cream are lightly browned.

Remove the Pear tart from the oven, if necessary, carefully separate the crust from the tart pan with the tip of a paring knife. Slide the tart pan onto a wire cooling rack. Carefully remove the tart pan rim. Let the Pear tart cool to room temperature before sliding the removeable base from underneath the tart, and slide the Pear tart onto a serving dish.


This Fresh Pear tart was eaten fairly rapidly!
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Jedi Council Member
FOTCM Member
Et la Bourdaloue !!! Bravo :clap:
Vous avez trouvé les vraies recettes ! Il y a le Gateau Basque aussi ?

You found the real recipes ! There's the Basque Cake too
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