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Country-Style Gingerbread-Pear Tarts
- Prepare Gingerbread Pastry. On a lightly floured surface, roll each pastry portion into a 7-inch circle. Arrange circles in an even layer on a extra-large baking sheet (circles may overlap slightly). Cover pastry circles with waxed paper or a clean kitchen towel; set aside. Preheat oven to 375 degrees F.
- In a large saucepan, combine granulated sugar, pear nectar, raisins, pear liqueur, butter, lemon juice, the 1 tablespoon ginger, the cinnamon, and salt. Bring to boiling, stirring to dissolve sugar and melt butter. Add pears. Return to boiling; reduce heat. Cover and simmer for 5 minutes. Remove from heat. Pour mixture through a fine-mesh strainer into a bowl. Allow pear mixture to drain well; reserve drained liquid.
- Uncover pastry circles. Mound about 3/4 cup of the pear filling into the center of each pastry circle, leaving a 1-1/2-inch border. Fold pastry borders up and over pear mixture, leaving filling exposed in the centers and pleating and pinching as needed.
- In a small bowl, whisk together egg white and the water. Brush edges of the tarts with egg white mixture; sprinkle with Turbinado sugar. Bake for 20 minutes. Sprinkle almonds over pear filling in tarts. Bake about 10 minutes more or until pastry is golden and filling is bubbly.
- Return reserved liquid to the saucepan. Bring to boiling; reduce heat. Boil gently, uncovered, for 5 to 7 minutes or until thickened and caramel colored.
- Using a wide metal spatula, transfer tarts to a wire rack. Drizzle with the pear syrup. Cool for 1 hour. Serve warm. If desired, serve topped with whipped cream and additional crystallized ginger. Makes 6 tarts.
From the Test Kitchen
To Bake Ahead:
/B> Prepare and bake as directed. Cool completely. Cover and let stand at room temperature for up to 24 hours; or chill for up to 3 days. Let stand at room temperature for 30 minutes before serving.
- In a large bowl, stir together flour, brown sugar, apple pie spice, and salt. Using a pastry blender, cut in butter until pieces are pea-size. In a small bowl, stir together egg yolks and cold water. Stir egg yolk mixture into flour mixture just until moistened. Using your hands, shape mixture into a ball. Divide dough into six equal portions.