Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Pear Tartelette with Chocolate

You might have noticed that I had yet to publish a dessert recipe... I have no sweet tooth (given the choice between a savory crepe and a sweet one, I'll choose the savory)... but it does not mean that I don't enjoy sweet desserts once in a while. My husband, on the contrary, is Mr. Big Sweet Tooth. He has somewhat taken over the baking in our kitchen (because he finds that I don't bake enough!!); he now has a few very good recipes (I'll publish them when he makes them.). Because he does not have that much time to bake, I have come to bake, mostly easy things that I can do with the children on a rainy day...
Last week, there was a big request for "poires au chocolat" from my children. Since I had the time (and the desire) to bake, I decided to improve my usual recipe and make these tartelettes (inspired by Helen from Tartelette). They were a big hit! Plus, since I baked too much dough, I was able to freeze some for another batch in the near future. Really worth the time....Bon Appétit!

Ingredients (8 tartelettes)

For the dough:
- 1 stick (114g) butter at room temperature
- 3/4 cup (95g) of powder sugar
- 1 egg
- 1 1/2 cup (190g) all purpose flour
- 2 tablespoons (20g) cornstarch
- Pinch of salt

For the filling:
- 1 stick (114g) butter, softened
- 1/2 cup (50g) of hazelnut flour
- 1/2 cup (50g) of almond flour
- 1/4 cup (60ml) of heavy cream
- 2 eggs
- 2 teaspoons (10ml) Vanilla extract

Other Ingredients:
- 3 pears (ripe), sliced
- 1 bittersweet chocolate bar (100g)
- 2 tablespoons of water
- Almond slices (for decoration)

Preparing the dough:
  • In a stand mixer, whip the butter and sugar together until the butter reaches a lighter color.
  • Add the egg and mix.
  • Add the flour, cornstarch and salt, mix briefly (you don't want to work the dough in the bowl).Take all the dough out of the mixing bowl and put in on a board (sprinkled with flour). Make a disk, wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate for one hour.
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C) . Put Parchemin Paper on a baking sheet.
  • After one hour, take half of the dough (the other half can be frozen) and make it 1/4 inch (0.6 cm) thick. Make 8  3-inch rounds (7.5 cm), put them on the baking sheet and cook for 8-10 minutes.
  • Once cooked, let cool in the kitchen.

For the filling:
  • Preheat oven to 350°F (180°C)
  • In a food processor, mix all ingredients together (except the heavy cream) until smooth. 
  • Add the cream but do not wisk it with the food processor, use a wooden spoon instead to stir. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.
  • Place the 8 rounds in 8 pastry rings of the same size. Divide the filling into the 8 rings and bake for 20 minutes.
  • Once cooked, let cool.

Finishing up (just before serving)
  • Peal the pears and slice them
  • Divide the pear slices on the 8 tartelettes
  • In a double-boiler, melt chocolate with water. Whisk until smooth and pour on the pear.
  • Add a few almond slices for decoration.
  • Serve while chocolate is still warm

My personal comments:
  • The hazelnut-almond filling is so good that you could just bake it and make cookies.
  • I did not poach the pears because mine were really soft. If yours are hard, you might want to poach them (halved) for a few minutes in water and vanilla extract.
  • You could make the chocolate sauce in the microwave. It's faster!
  • The 3-inch rings are big for children. Mine ate one whole tartelette each but next time, I'll bake smaller ones for the children.

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