Pear has become such a versatile fruit for us. It gives us so many uses.
We keep about 50 lbs in a cool dry dark location sprinkled with dry lime. We will be able to use the fresh pear in salads, desserts and breakfast fruit for nearly 4 months.
The remaining 450 lbs, we peel, core and freeze in bags of 16 pears each. This gives me food to use for the winter months when the garden is far more selective in what it will produce. Freezing food in a quality manner is a good way to preserve foods.
We also dry about 50lbs as well, that we serve on our Charcuterie trays. Typically we dry, pear, fig, and cantaloupe each year for the Charcuterie Trays.
One of my main uses for pear is to get a large 8-gallon pot and place the frozen pears (96) on a very low stove for 6 hours. I will often add a bit of honey, cinnamon, nutmeg near the end. I pour off the liquid (which is usually about 2 gallon) for our pear juice to serve with breakfast. Then I use my immersible blender and emulsify the pears. I use this puree for charcuterie pear butter, for fruit kolaches, I add it to make my curried pear vinegarette and I
use it in some of my fruit bread.
French Country Tarte
1/2 cup whole-grain flour or whole wheat flour
1/2 cup ground oats
3 teaspoons granulated sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
4 tablespoons cold butter or coconut oil
2 tablespoons yogurt
3 table of spoons ice water
4 medium pears
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon cornstarch
2 tablespoons brown sugar
1/8 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon Nutmeg
1 C good quality ricotta mixed w/ 1 C powdered sugar
1 tablespoon honey
1/4 teaspoon boiling water
- Crust: whisk together the flour, oats, sugar, and salt. Add the butter - cut the butter into the flour mixture until you get a pea size course texture. Combine the yogurt and ice water. Using a fork, gradually mix the yogurt mixture into the flour mixture. Pat the dough into a 5-inch round and wrap in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 25 min.
- Preheat the oven to 425 degrees, and prepare the filling. Peel the pears, core them and cut into 1/4-inch slices ( use a mandolin if you have it). In a large bowl toss the pear slices with the lemon juice. Sprinkle in the cornstarch, brown sugar, nutmeg, honey, and cinnamon and toss until the pears are evenly coated. Set aside.
- Place the dough in the bottom of a tart pan. Press chilled dough to the edges and up the pan sides. If the dough breaks - patch it up with your fingers.
- spread the ricotta mixture on the bottom of the pan. Arrange the pears in a fan effect around the top to form a pattern.
- Bake the tart for 15 minutes at 425, and then reduce the oven temperature to 350 degrees F, keeping the tart in the oven all the while, and bake for another 40 minutes, until the pears are tender and the crust is golden brown.
- In a small bowl stir together the honey and boiling water to make a glaze. When the tart is done remove it from the oven and brush the honey glaze all over the top of the fruit and crust. Transfer to a plate to cool slightly. Cut into 8 wedges and serve warm or room temperature with vanilla ice-cream or fresh whipped cream.