This recipe was taught to me by my great friend, the Grand Michel Lanot (Chef, Ritz Carlton Montreal)
The Crust: (1 to 24 hours before)
The dough takes just 10 minutes to make. Homemade pastry always tastes better so avoid buying it pre-made. Make it the day before.
2 1/4 cups (340 g) unbleached all-purpose flour (preferably organic)
1/4 tsp fine-grained salt (not Kosher salt)
3/4 cup (170 g) cold unsalted butter
6 tbsp (90 ml) ice water, approximately
In a large bowl, combine the flour and salt. Cut the butter into the flour using two knives to get a grainy texture and the butter is the pea-sized. Gradually add the water, lifting and turning the flour mixture using a spatula or your hand to prevent a portion from becoming inconsistently wet. Add water if needed, one spoonful at a time, just until the mixture holds when pressed between your fingers. Form into two discs.
Cover in plastic wrap and refrigerate the dough for 30 minutes.
On a floured work surface or between two sheets of baking paper, roll out the dough to about ¾ inch thick. Your disk needs to be ½ inch bigger to the circumference of your Tarte Tatin pan or cast iron pan.
Red Wine Poached Pear:
2 pounds lightly ripened Bosc pears (about 5 pears)
2/3 cup of sugar (raw or unbleached if possible)
4 tablespoons butter (unsalted organic)
1 cup of red wine (Merlot or Gamay)
1 tablespoon of fresh squeezed lemon juice
· Prep the pears:
Preheat oven to 375ºF
Peel and halve the pears. With a teaspoon, scoop out the core, calyx, and the stem. As you peel and cut the pears, place them in a bowl with water and lemon juice to keep them from turning brown.
In a cast iron pan, melt 2 tablespoon of butter, add 1 cup of red wine. Dry your pears with a paper towel and add them delicately (face down) in the pan. Let them cook slowly at medium heat for 10 minutes (after liquid starts to boil). Remove the pear to a plate and add sugar. At medium to low heat (stir) and let the liquid reduce by half.
Out of heat, place a single pear half in the center of the Tarte Tatin pan (cut side up). Fan the remaining pears with the narrow side pointing toward the center around the center pear half. All your pears need to face up (cut side up) try to minimize any gaps. Put the pan back on low heat. Cook gently until base is caramelized ,15 to 20 minutes.
Remove from heat and on a safe surface, Place the pastry dough over the pears and gently tuck the edges inside the edge of the pan. Careful, the pan is still hot (use a wooden spoon or a fork). Place the pan in the 375°F oven (on or under the baking sheet to catch any spillover) and reduce the heat to 350°F. Bake for 30 to 40 minutes until pastry is baked through and nicely browned. Remove from oven. Flip the tarte over on a large plate while the tarte Tatin is still hot, that way the caramel will not make the tarte stick to the pan as you invert it. Let cool to room temperature before serving.
The Wine Pairings (all available at Bonde Wines):
· J.B. Neufeld, "Old Goat" Cabernet Sauvignon 2017, Yakima Valley, WA
· Folk Machine Wine, Charbono 2019, Suisun Valley, Solano County, North Coast, CA
· Zorah Winery, Karasì Yeghegnadzor Areni Noir 2018 Ararat Valley, Armenia