This amazing pear dessert will leave your guests coming back for more. Poached pears in a creamy filling, surrounded by beautiful short crust pastry.
Prep time: 1 ½ hours, plus 2 ½ hours for dough to chill
For the pastry dough:
240 g plain flour
180 g chilled butter, cubed
¼ cup chilled water
For the poached pears:
6-8 Bosc pears, peeled and with stem left on, or 10-12 miniature Paradise pears
2 cups white wine
½ cup water
1 cup sugar
1 orange, the zest and juice
1 lemon, the zest and juice
For the custard:
2 tablespoons flour
3 tablespoons sugar
3 large eggs
½ cup sour cream
½ cup of the poaching liquid
1 ½ teaspoons vanilla
1. To make the pastry, place the flour and butter and salt in a food processor and blitz until all the butter and flour is combined. Slowly add the water and continue to process until the mixture form a ball. Remove from the processor, warp in cling wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes.
2. Peel pears. In a large saucepan, mix white wine, water, sugar, orange and lemon juice, and zest. Submerge pears immediately in poaching liquid, to avoid discoloration.
3. Simmer for 30 minutes. Turn off heat and remove pears. Drain pears and return poaching liquid to a boil. Reduce liquid by half.
4. Whisk custard ingredients together and set aside.
5. Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Remove dough from refrigerator and press into the bottom and several inches up the sides of a greased, spring form pan, or rectangle tart tin with a removable base. Fold down extra dough to make the sides of the pastry extra sturdy. Cover the pastry shell in plastic wrap and refrigerate for 30 minutes. When dough is chilled, remove plastic wrap, line pastry with baking paper, and fill with dried beans or pie weights. Bake for 15 minutes and remove from oven.
6. Allow pastry to cool. Stand the poached pears in the shell and pour the custard mixture around them.
7. Bake at 180 degrees for 30 minutes, or until the custard is firm.
8. Once booked, brush over the little of the reduced poaching liquid. Serve warm or cold with a dollop of cream or mascarpone.