This pear tart looks elegant and tastes sweet and buttery, with a beautiful caramelisation on top. Perfect for sharing at tea time or dessert. Serve it with a dollop of creme fraiche or a scoop of ice cream on top.
The Rustic Tart
I really love the rustic look of this pear tart made using puff pastry. When the tart comes out of the oven, it brings out the inviting warmth of caramelised pear slices. Combined with the crispiness of the puff pastry, the soft pears are the perfect combination of textures you want in a dessert.
I have made this tart numerous times and it always turns out perfect. Using demerara sugar brings out this rustic, caramel-coloured look on the tart and it releases an almost toffee-like perfume in the air.
What ingredients you need
- Pears: I have used conference pears for this recipe and it softens well when baked.
- Puff pastry: Use ready-rolled or a block that you can roll. You can also make your own if you prefer.
- Butter: it needs to be cold and cut into small cubes. It adds a later of richness to the tart.
- Sugar: I have used demerara (or brown) sugar as it brings out a beautiful caramel colour and flavour to the tart. Alternatively you can use caster sugar.
- Egg yolk: Brush the edges of the puff pastry with an egg yolk and it will give the tart this golden brown glaze.
- Lemon juice: It stops the pear slices from browning but at the same time it adds a touch of freshness to the tart.
How to make Pear Tart
This pear tart is best enjoyed when pears are in season and in abundance. Start by coring and slicing the pears. You do not need to peel the pears as the pear skin contains all the goodness. Another bonus is the tart looks beautiful with the contrasting dark green colour of the skin. Adding a little lemon juice will stop the pears from browning.
Measure and prepare all the ingredients before taking out the puff pastry from the fridge. You want it to remain cold and the quicker you assemble it the better. Start by brushing the edges of the puff pastry with the egg yolk. Doing it before placing the pears on the pastry will ensure all the edges are well coated. This will give a beautiful shiny glaze to the tart. Place the pear slices, with the longest ones along the edges, finishing with the smallest pieces towards the middle.
Using Demerara sugar makes a difference to the look, smell and taste of the tart. Sprinkle the sugar over the pears. Scatter the butter cubes over the tart and it is ready to bake.
Useful tips for making the best pear tart
- Cold ingredients: Ensure the puff pastry is cold and the butter is hard in order to achieve a crispy base.
- Work quickly: The best thing about this tart is how easy it is to assemble. Ensure all the ingredients are handy and you assemble the tart quickly before going in the oven.
- Demerara sugar: Using brown sugar will give the tart a beautiful, caramelised flavour.
- Pears: Use pears that cook well such as Conference , Comice, Anjou or Concorde. You want the pears to hold their shape and not turn into a compote.
- Crispy bottom: Ensure the bottom of the tart is baked and crispy before taking it out of the oven
Caramelised Pear Puff Pastry Tart
- 350 g ready-rolled puff pastry
- 3 conference pears medium sized
- 50 g cold butter diced
- 2 tbsp demerara sugar (brown sugar)
- 1 egg yolk
- 1/2 lemon juiced
- Slice pears: Preheat the oven to 180C. Wash and cut the pears into two, core them and slice thinly lengthways. You do not need to peel them. Add the lemon juice and mix well.
- Prepare puff pastry: Lay out the puff pastry with its parchment paper on a baking tray, and brush the egg yolk around the edges of the pastry.
- Add pear slices: Place the pear slices by overlapping them, starting with the longest slices along the edges and the smallest ones towards the centre of the puff pastry.
- Sprinkle sugar and butter: Sprinkle the demerara sugar over the pear slices. Place the butter cubes over the pears and leave to stand for a few minutes. This will allow the sugar to melt with the pear juices.
- Bake: Bake the tart for 20 minutes, or until the edges of the tart have puffed and they are golden brown. Check the bottom of the tart to ensure it is crispy and cooked before removing from the oven.
- Serve: Serve warm with some creme fraiche or ice cream on top.