Vanilla – Brandy Pear Galette


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After spending a month or so in Maine, I returned home to an overgrown vegetable garden, loads of tomatoes and a fruit tree heavily laden with Asian Pears. In fact, the branches were so heavy that some of them were almost on the ground. Someone I didn’t do a very good job thinning the baby fruit in the spring.  I know it’s better for the tree and the quality of the fruit but I have a hard time doing this task, deciding who stays and who goes.  I apologize to the few that I can stand to remove.  I know, silly me!  Quite a few ripe pears had fallen to the ground, so I gathered those first to see what was salvageable. Some of them had to be thrown out (or given to the chickens next door) but many of them were still good even though they had a few bad spots. Last year I made Asian Pear Butter with the less fortunate pears but I haven’t dragged my canning equipment out yet, so I decided to make a Pear Galette that I love. It’s based on a recipe for Canned Pears in Vanilla Syrup (Stay tuned – that recipe coming soon!) which is absolutely delicious and I created a pie last year using some of those flavors.  I used Asian pears but any kind of pear (or apple) will work.  Now the house smells lovely and we have a gorgeous dessert for later!
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Vanilla Brandy Pear Galette

  • Servings: 6
  • Difficulty: easy
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1 (9 inch) unbaked pie crust (How to make a Homemade Pie Crust)
2-5 pears (any kind)
2/3 cup white sugar
1/4 cup butter, melted
1 Tbsn flour
1 Tbsn vanilla extract
2 Tbsn brandy
2 Tbsn slivered almonds (optional)

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  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F (175 degrees C).

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  • Press the pie pastry into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch pie plate. Let the edges fall over the side for now.

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  • Half the pears and core them using a melon baller.  Peel and place the pear halves in a bowl of cold water with a lemon squeezed in to prevent browning.

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  • Dry the pear halves and slice them into the pie crust.  You can arrange them in concentric circles starting at the outside and working your way into the center (with the small ends toward the center).  Or you can throw them in free form.  It will taste the same.

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  • Start outside and make your way to the center, until the slices are all gone.  Slide any mis-shaped slices toward the outside where they will be covered by the crust.

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  • In a medium bowl, mix the butter and sugar together until smooth.  Stir in flour, vanilla and brandy.  If you want a more custard-like dessert, double the flour and add two eggs that have been beaten until fluffy

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  • Pour mixture over the top of the pears, coating them evenly.

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  • Fold the extra pastry over the pears to form a crust.

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  • Continue folding until the circle has been completed

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  • Brush the pastry with beaten egg to prevent over browning

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  • Bake for 1 hour in the preheated oven, until pears are soft and bubbling. Softer pears like Barlette should be done.  Firmer pears like Asian or D’Anjou may need another 10 minutes or so.

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  • If you are topping your tart with almonds, toast them in a dry pan over medium high heat for a few minutes until golden brown.

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  • Let cool slightly and sprinkle on top of the tart.

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