Pear Tarte Tatin – easier than you think!
If you’re looking for an impressive and delicious dessert to serve guests, look no further than this Pear Tarte Tatin. It’s a classic French dessert that is way easier than I ever thought.
Seriously, I have been wanting to make a Tarte Tatin for years, but never have, as I heard it was difficult to make. But if you follow the steps below, you’ll see it’s actually super easy, but oh so impressive, and oh so delicious.
My catalyst for breaking the procrastination of making this, was my neighbours giving me a big punch of beautiful pears from their trees. Tarte tatin came into my brain as a good way of using these up – so it was time to get out of my comfort zone. I’ve since made this 3 times, modifying it a little each time, but each time amazingly easy, and delicious.
Here’smy recipe, and below are my step by step tips for making your own delicious and super easy Pear Tarte Tatin.
Pear Tarte Tatin
- Oven proof skillet (fry pan)
- 2.5 oz brown sugar (75 grams)
- 2 oz butter (60 grams)
- 1 tsp vanilla essence
- 3-4 large pears (or 6-8 small)
- 1 large sheet flaky pastry
- Peel and de-core pears. Chop into quarters length wise (and again if really large pears). (Read the tip below)
- Roll out and cut your pastry sheet to size. Return to the fridge while you prepare the dessert.
- Preheat your oven to 400℉ (200℃) In an 11 inch (28cm) oven-safe pan (see note below), melt the butter and sugar over a medium heat. Let it come to the boil slowly, then simmer for 5 minutes.
- Add the cut pears into the frypan. Keep it simmering, and let the pears cook in the caramel for about 20 minutes.
- Add the vanilla essence while the pears are simmering in the caramel.
- Once your caramel has reduced down, remove it from the heat, and arrange your pears neatly in the pan (narrow ends pointing towards the centre).
- Now place your pastry sheet over the top, and tuck the edges down around the sides of the pan. Prick the pastry with a fork in several spots.
- Bake the pear tarte tatin for about 25-30 mins, or until the pastry is golden and puffed up.
- Remove the pan from the oven and let it cool for a few minutes. To serve, carefully invert the tarte tatin onto a large plate or serving platter. Be very careful as the caramel will be hot. Serve with cream or ice cream.
My top tips for a delicious and easy Pear Tarte Tatin;
If you have time, you can prepare your pears in the morning, and place in the fridge (uncovered) to dry out. (Pears have such a high moisture content, this helps reduce the liquid going into the caramel)
I use pre-made pastry sheets. One is not quite large enough, so I cut a second sheet into four, add them onto my original sheet overlapping at the edges, and use a rolling pin to join them. I then place my skillet over the top to cut it to size.
(Traditionally, a cast iron pan would be used to cook this in, but for me personally, I find them just so heavy, which makes inverting it (flipping it) at the end really difficult for me. I use (and LOVE) the Neoflam non stick, oven proof pans. It’s what you see in the photo below.
Stove top prep
Once you add pears to the frypan, the water content of them will ‘upset’ the caramel initially. Don’t panic, continue on the heat and it’ll settle down. You’ll simmer this mixture for around 20 minutes to reduce and thicken the caramel sauce. This will ensure your pastry doesn’t get too soggy later.
You’ll see from the video below, that my caramel went from above (quite thick) to liquid once the pears were added. I reduced this down (thickened it), by simmering for about 20 minutes.
When it’s cooked
Don’t forget to use oven mitts to hold your skillet handle as you remove it from the oven – it will be HOT!
To invert your tarte, place your large plate upside down over your skillet. Then flip (carefully) – it will likely be ‘slippery’. I make sure I do this over my sink, so if any caramel escapes it goes into the sink.
(and then come back and let us all know what a success it was!)
Pin the image above to save the recipe, so you can find it easily later.