Saturday, September 26, 2015

Pear Tart with Ginger and Vanilla Frangipane



My kitchen smells like a French pâtisserie right now, and it is not a bad thing. I have never been to Paris, but I know for a fact that I would eat my way though every little pastry shop if I had the chance.

This pear tart with ginger and vanilla frangipane makes a perfect transition from summer to fall. It is sweet and light with Asian pears, but at the same time rustic with its butter cookie type of crust and smooth almond pastry cream.




Our nearby Grosvenor Market had just gotten some Asian Pears from one of the local farms, and they looked so delicious, I knew I just had to bake something. Somehow locally grown produce always tastes better.




Before I made this tart, I had never heard about frangipane. I learned it's an almond pastry cream used in Italian and French pastries, which dates back to the mid-1600's. Then, it was more of a custard scented with almonds, but later became what we today enjoy as a cream made of almonds and butter. A fun fact, it was apparently named after an Italian noble man named Frangipane, who introduced almond scented gloves that were a big hit in the 1800's. Who would have thought?

This tart has a delicious twist to its frangipane - it uses fresh ginger, which pairs beautifully with the pears. (No pun intended.)




Now, let me tell you a few secrets when it comes to getting beautiful pie and tart crusts. When you have mixed all of the ingredients, make sure you wrap the dough in plastic wrap and let it rest in the fridge for a half hour. Afterward, when you have rolled it (or pressed it) out in the form, put it in the freezer for a little while before you transfer it to the oven. This will help the dough to keep its shape in the heat. Another great thing is dried yellow peas or ceramic balls (see picture a little further down) that you put in the pie shell before you bake it. This will help the bottom of the pie to bake into an even layer, which looks beautiful when you slice the pie. When I make my high quiche, I even put tin foil around the edges to make sure they stay high and even.

This crust recipe is meant for a little larger form, but I only had a smaller sized one, so the crust ended up being a little thicker than I would have liked. Too much of the good stuff!






Serve this beauty with ice cream or whipped cream. I prefer the consistency of whipped cream to this tart, since the frangipane has such a fluffy and delicate texture.




Pear Tart with Ginger and Vanilla Frangipane
from the blog I huvudet på Elvaelva
Crust:
300 g flour
90 g granulated sugar
200 g butter
2 eggs
1 large pinch baking powder
1 pinch salt
Frangipane:
150 g almond flour
135 g granulated sugar
125 g butter
2 eggs
1 tsp vanilla sugar
Ginger
Filling:
3-4 pears

Almonds, sliced
2 tbsp apricot marmelade

Directions:

For the pie crust: Cream the sugar and butter together in a mixing bowl. Add sifted flour, baking powder and salt. Add the eggs and mix until it forms a smooth batter. 




Put plastic wrap around the dough, and let rest in the fridge for a half hour or more. Remove from the fridge and press the dough into a pie form or spring form pan. 




Preheat the oven to 355 degrees F. Put the pie form in the freezer for 5-10 minutes so that the dough hardens. Prick the pie crust with a fork, and add ceramic balls to make sure the crust bakes evenly. I usually put down some parchment paper before, since it will make it easier to remove the balls later. Let bake for 20 minutes, until the crust is almost done. Remove from the oven and let cool. 



Frangipane: Mix together sugar and butter. Add the rest of the ingredients and mix until a loose batter. Add ginger after your own liking. I ended up using about a teaspoon.



Preheat the oven to 300 degrees F. Fill the pie crust with frangipane. Cut 5 mm thin pear slices, and arrange them on top, lightly pressing them down into the frangipane. 



Add the almond slices. Bake in the oven for 30 minutes, then increase the temperature to 395 degrees F and let bake for another 15 minutes. The tart should have a golden brown color. Remove from the oven and let cool.




To get that beautiful shiny top of the tart, slowly heat 2 tablespoons of apricot marmalade in a saucepan. Brush the pie with the melted marmalade. Now, isn't that beautiful! This is something that you can use to make fruit cakes or tarts look as shiny and delicious as the ones you see at bakeries.
Enjoy your baking!




Pärontarte med frangipane, ingefära och vanilj
från bloggen I huvudet på Elvaelva

Pajdeg:
5 dl vetemjöl

1 dl strösocker
200 gr smör
2 ägg
1 rejäl nypa bakpulver
1 nypa salt
en skvätt vatten
(ev. några nävar torkade gula ärtor)
Frangipane:
3 dl mandelmjöl
1.5 dl strösocker
125 gr smör
2 ägg
1 tsk vaniljpulver
ingefära
Fyllning:
3-4 st smakrika päron
en näve mandelflarn
ev. ett par msk aprikos- eller apelsinmarmelad

Gör så här:

Pajskal: Knåda ihop socker och smör i en bunke, sikta i mjöl, bakpulver och salt. Knäck ner äggen och blanda runt allting till en jämn deg. Vira lite plastfolie runt degen och ställ i kylen att vila en halvtimme eller mer. Kavla sedan ut degen och tryck ner i en låg pajform(gärna en variant med avtagbar kant).
Sätt ugnen på 180°. Ställ pajformen i frysen 5-10 minuter så degen stelnar . Nagga sedan pajskalet med en gaffel och häll ner några nävar torkade gula ärtor (detta gör att pajskalet håller sig på plats i ugnen, och inte rasar ihop eller bubblar upp). Sätt in i ugnen i ca. 20 minuter tills skalet är nästan färdiggräddat. Ta ut och låt svalna.
Frangipane: Knåda ihop strösocker och smör i en bunke, häll sedan ner resten av ingredienserna. Blanda ihop till en lös smet och smaksätt med så mycket ingefära du önskar.
Paj: Sätt ugnen på 150°. Bred ut frangipane-krämen i pajskalet. Skär 5 mm tunna skivor av frukten, lägg på i ett fint mönster ovanpå och tryck till lite så de hamnar en bit ner i krämen. Strö över mandelflarn (tips: så fort jag bakar någonting som innehåller någon form av nötter så brukar jag även dekorera med dem – det gör det enklare för nötallergiker att snabbt se vad de kan och inte kan äta) och sätt sedan in pajen i ugnen. Förgrädda i ca. 30 minuter. Höj sedan värmen till 200° och låt pajen stå ytterligare 10-15 minuter tills krämen börjar sätta sig och få lite gyllenbrun färg på ytan. Ta ut pajen och låt den svalna.
Tips: Vill du få lite glansig yta på din gräddade paj? Ta då några matskedar aprikos- eller apelsinmarmelad och värm försiktigt på spisen. Pensla sedan pajtäcket med den smälta marmeladen.

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