Fall is in the Air – Pear Tarte Tatin

Pear Tarte Tatin

1 1/2 cups flour
6 tablespoons sugar
1/2 teaspoon salt
10 tablespoons butter, cut into 1/2-inch cubes
1 egg, lightly beaten
1/4 cup ice cold water, as needed

8 Anjou or similar pears; peeled, cored and quartered
12 tablespoons butter
1 cup sugar

Pastry:  In a medium bowl, sift the dry ingredients.  Cut in the butter until the mixture resembles coarse meal.  Add the egg and then the water 1 tablespoon at a time.  The dough should pull away from the sides of the bowl and form a ball.  Form a disc with the dough and wrap in plastic wrap.  Place in the refrigerator until the pears are ready.

Pears:  Preheat oven to 375º.  In a 10-12 inch cast-iron skillet, melt the butter over medium-high heat.  Remove from heat and sprinkle evenly with sugar.  Tightly pack the pears around the edge of the skillet and then pack the center so that they resemble a fan of sorts.  Return to medium-high heat and cook for about 15 minutes and the butter and sugar are caramelized.

Roll the pastry out on a floured surface into a 12-inch round.  Gently place the pastry over the pears and tuck the edges under loosely between the pears and the wall of the skillet.  Bake for 30-40 minutes or until the pears are tender and the pastry is golden brown.  Allow tart to cool for  5 minutes and then loosen edges and invert onto a round platter.  Serve warm.

Serves 8-12