Monday, 10 November 2014

Pear and Chocolate Tart

Some enormous pears appeared in my Aussie Farmer's fruit box last week and I could think of nothing better than to make this delicious tart.

Pears are so versatile. Often used in savoury as well as sweet dishes, available all year round and very nutritious.  Pears are very high in fibre and half of the pear's total dietary fibre as well as its antioxidant and anti inflammatory phytonutrients are found in the skin, so it's best not to peel them. Because they contain less acid than apples, dentists seem to prefer you to eat these because they do less damage to your teeth.

You can find pear varieties in many colours from green through to red, gold and brown and each variety has its own properties and qualities.

Pears are another member of the rose family and lets face it aren't roses good for just about any occasion!

It was very coincidental that I had just bought a book called 'Australian Pears', which contains delicious recipes from some of Australia's finest chefs.

I decided to try  Guy Grossi's Chocolate and Pear Tart because I really wanted a show stopper and I felt the need to compliment my beautiful pears. However, I did change the recipe ever so slightly and I would now possibly cut down on some of the cocoa in the pastry just a little, to better fit with my palette. 


This is how I interpreted the recipe and the changes I made. It was delicious! I will certainly be trying more pear recipes from this book and I have my eye on an Upside Down Pear Pudding. I will let you know how it goes.


 Guy Grossi's Chocolate and Pear Tart

Pastry

100g butter
200g flour
60g cocoa (I would use 40g next time)
2 eggs (I actually only used 1 very large egg)

Place flour and butter into a bowl and rub in to resemble breadcrumbs. Sift in the cocoa powder and add sugar.
Lightly beat egg and add enough to bind the dry ingredients together. Turn onto bench and knead very slightly. Cover and chill for 20 minutes.

Filling

4 pears (I used Packham's)
200g dark chocolate 70%
100g butter
4 eggs separated (I used 3 large)
200g caster sugar (I changed it to 150g)
2 tablespoons of marmalade (This was omitted from the original recipe)

Take a deep flan ring 28cm and grease it. Roll out the pastry to 5mm thickness and line the flan ring by pressing into the flutes. If it starts to break a little, don't worry, just press it together and ease it into the ring. Brush the pastry with marmalade. I used a slightly bitter orange marmalade. Once cooked the marmalade tasted as though I had added a liqueur.

Cut the pears into quarters and remove the cores. (I had to peel mine this time, but you can leave the skin on if you prefer) Arrange on the base of the flan.



Pre-heat oven to 180ยบ.

Melt chocolate and butter together over a low heat. Set aside to cool slightly. Beat egg yolks and sugar until pale and fluffy. Fold in cooled chocolate mixture. Whisk egg whites until stiff and fold into the mixture. Pour this over the pears and bake for approximately 40 minutes until nice and crispy.








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