Individual pear and hazelnut tart with lemon goat cheese cream

It's pear season! There's nothing better than an individual tart, warm from the oven, topped with lemon goat cheese cream. 

Beyond the Peel
You can use whole wheat pastry flour for these pear tarts.

What could be more exciting than yummy pear and hazelnut tarts? Not much. They pretty much rock my world.

But I do have some news that comes pretty close. First, I’ll be leaving for Vietnam in less than a weeks time! Actually, by this time next week, I’ll be on a plane! I am ridiculously excited not only to see my friends that have been living there for five years but also for a new adventure, since I’ve never been.

For this tart I’ve used The Joy of Baking recipe for the Pate Brisee substituting the all purpose flour for whole wheat pastry flour and the white sugar for sucanat. Her recipe makes 2 pie crusts. I cut the recipe in half or you can make the full recipe and freeze one of the discs for later. Need a Gluten Free Tart crust? You can try this one from My Darling Lemon Thyme.

Pear tart and lemon goat cheese cream

1 recipe for Pate Brisee

2 pears, peeled, cored and each half sliced into 6 wedges

1 tablespoon sugar (coconut/palm, sucanat, rapadura, or brown)

1 tablespoon flour (I used spelt, but a gluten-free blend will work, too)

1/2 teaspoon cinnamon

1/4 teaspoon nutmeg

Pinch of salt

4 teaspoons sliced hazelnuts

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees F.

2. Peel, core and slice the pears. Toss the pears with sugar, flour, cinnamon, nutmeg and salt. Set aside.

3. Roll out the pastry dough to 20-23 cm (8-9 inches). Cut out 5-by-5-inch circles from the dough. Place the circles on a floured baking sheet. Place a quarter of the pear mixture into the center of each circle (using 6 pieces you can reassemble a shape of a half pear if you feel like getting fancy).

4. Sprinkle the top of each pear tart with 1 teaspoon of sliced hazelnuts. Pinch the sides of the pastry around the outer 1 edge of the pears. Brush with the crust with the beaten egg and water mixture. Bake for 30 minutes.

Lemon goat cheese cream

1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt

1 tablespoon goat cheese

1 tablespoon maple syrup

1 teaspoon lemon zest

Blend yogurt, goat cheese, and maple syrup together until smooth. I used an emulsion blender, but a room temperature goat cheese may blend well enough without it. Fold in the lemon zest. Place in the fridge for a minimum of an hour before serving to give it time to firm up.

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