Pear tarte tatin

Ingredients (makes 8 portions)

For the fanned pears

  • Pear tarte tatin2 conference pears, peeled
  • 570ml water
  • 300g sugar

For the caramel

  • 250g caster sugar
  • 50g unsalted butter

For the puff pastry

  • 375g puff pastry
  • 50g unsalted butter, melted

Method

  1. Combine the water and sugar in a pan that is large enough to cover the pears, place over a medium heat and simmer for 30 minutes or until tender. Once cooked, chill in fridge/blast chiller; retain the stock syrup for glazes, fruit salads or use again for poaching pears.
  2. Once the pears are chilled, cut into quarters length ways, removing the core so that you are left with a flat side. Starting an inch from the tip of the pear, slice length ways leaving the stem end intact then create a fan by applying a little pressure with the flat of your hand. Fanning the pear quarters is optional but we found that our way gives a better caramel coverage when laying the pears in the dish/pan.
  3. For the caramel, place the butter and sugar into an ovenproof dish/pan (8–9 inch diameter) and heat gently until the sugar dissolves. Tilt the pan in different directions to achieve an even consistency but do not stir. When the sugar has dissolved, let it bubble until it turns a golden caramel colour.
  4. Arrange the fanned pears (fan side down into the caramel). Using our ready-to-roll puff pastry, roll out until an even 3mm depth is achieved then cut out a circle the same size as the pan. Prick all over with a fork and chill for an hour before placing over the pears. Liberally brush the pastry and the edge of the dish/pan with the melted butter – this will give the pastry a golden colour and also prevent the pastry from sticking to the edge of the pan.
  5. Place the tart into a preheated oven at 200°c and cook for 30 minutes.
  6. After removing from the oven, let the pear tarte tatin cool for about 10 minutes before turning out onto a plate.
  7. Serve with mascarpone, clotted cream, whipped cream or ice cream.