- 1 cup unbleached all-purpose flour
- 1/2 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces
- 3 Tbsp. icing sugar
- 1 Tbsp. finely grated lemon rind
- 1 (16 oz.) jar miniature pears in grappa syrup or 5 small fresh pears
- 2/3 cup granulated sugar
- 8 ounces mascarpone cheese
- 1 egg
- 1/2 tsp. pure vanilla extract
- 1/2 cup toasted chopped hazelnuts (optional)
- Place flour, butter, icing sugar and lemon rind in bowl of a food processor fitted with a metal blade.
- Pulse 8-10 times to break up the butter, then process until dough leaves the sides of the bowl and forms a loose ball.
- Wrap dough in plastic wrap and chill 15 minutes.
- Preheat oven to 400°F. Remove dough from wrap and flatten slightly.
- Roll out onto a lightly floured surface to 1/4-inch thickness. Fit into a 9-inch tart pan with removable bottom.
- Fit a sheet of parchment or waxed paper inside the pastry shell and fill with dried beans or pie weights.
- Blind bake the shell for 12-15 minutes. Remove and let cool.
- Meanwhile, peel and core the fresh pears.
- Slice lengthwise into sixths. Sprinkle with half the sugar and set aside. (If using preserved pears, drain and slice in half. Omit sugar.)
- In a large bowl, combine cheese, remaining sugar, egg and vanilla.
- Spread the mixture over the cooked pastry shell.
- Arrange pear slices attractively over top and bake for 20 minutes or until tart is golden brown.
- Just before serving, sprinkle with hazelnuts if desired.
Recipe courtesy Caren McSherry from the Gourmet Warehouse