This Brown Butter and Spice Pear Tart with Pasta Frolla may be made a day in advance and keeps best at room temperature. Making it the ideal pie for a busy holiday meal.
Pasta frolla is a rich and buttery sweet Italian pastry dough enhanced with a little lemon and orange zest. See recipe here: https://www.sippitysup.com/recipe/pasta-frolla-italian-sweet-pastry-dough/
- pasta frolla (divided into 2 discs, see note)
- 3 large eggs
- 1 ¼ cup granulated sugar
- ½ cup all-purpose flour (plus more for rolling)
- ½ teaspoon ground cinnamon (plus more for sprinkling)
- ½ teaspoon Chinese five-spice powder (optional)
- ¼ teaspoon kosher salt
- 12 tablespoon unsalted butter
- 1 ½ teaspoon vanilla extract
- 1 large pear (peeled, cored and cut into 3/4‑inch dice)
- vanilla-scented whipped cream (as needed for serving)
Prepare the tart shell: Place a 9 or 10 x 1‑inch tart pan with a removable bottom on a baking sheet.
On a lightly floured surface using a lightly floured rolling pin, roll one of the pasta frolla discs into a 12 or 13-inch round a generous 1/8‑inch thick. Save the other disc for another purpose. Carefully fold the dough in half, and slide it onto a rolling pin. Transfer to the tart pan. Unfold the dough, easing it gently into the pan; do not stretch the dough. Press the dough into place, then run your roller over the edges of the pan, trimming it flush with the top all the way around. Chill in the freezer until firm, about 20 minutes.
Meanwhile, set the oven rack to the center position and preheat to 375 degrees F.
Make the filling: In a large bowl whisk together the eggs and sugar until pale and frothy. Then, using a rubber spatula, fold in the flour, cinnamon, five-spice powder (if using), and salt until well-combined, lump-free, but not yet stiff. Set aside.
In a small saucepan, heat the butter until foamy. Continue heating, swirling the pan often, until bubbles subside, the butter is brown and gives off a nutty aroma. Remove from heat, allow to cool for 5 or 6 minutes, then stir in vanilla.
Whisking continuously, slowly drizzle the warm (not hot) brown butter vanilla mixture into the egg mixture in a slow, steady stream until the batter is well-combined. Set aside to cool completely.
Bake the tart: Spread the peeled and diced pears evenly across the bottom of the pastry-lined tart pan. There should be some space between the pears. Pour just enough of the brown butter batter over the pears to just cover. It’s fine if the edges of the pears peek out of the batter. Fill the tart almost to the top edge, buto not overfill the tart as it rises during baking. If you don’t use all the batter, you may bake it separately in a small ramekin.
Carefully move the tart on its baking sheet to the heated oven and bake for 50 to 55 minutes, or until puffed and golden brown.
To serve: Allow the tart to cool somewhat before attempting to get the tart out of the shell. Serve at room temperature with a dollop of whipped cream and a sprinkle of ground cinnamon.
Store, covered, at room temperature.