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Pear dartois with brandy custard

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Ingredients

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Pear dartois

  • 450g of puff pastry, (2 x 225g blocks)
  • 4 pears, peeled, cut in half lengthways and core removed)
  • 225g of sugar
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten with a splash of water to make an egg wash
  • icing sugar

Frangipane

Brandy custard

  • 175ml of milk
  • 125ml of double cream
  • 1/2 vanilla pod, split lengthways and seeds scraped out
  • 3 egg yolks
  • 75g of caster sugar
  • 50ml of brandy, preferably Cognac
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Method

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1
Preheat the oven to 220°C/gas mark 8
2
Roll out one of the blocks of puff pastry fairly thinly to a 35cm x 15cm rectangle. Place this onto a greaseproof-lined baking sheet and into the fridge
  • 450g of puff pastry, (2 x 225g blocks)
3
Repeat with the other block of pastry but roll it 2.5cm wider, so it's around 37cm x 17.5cm. Fold this piece of pastry in half lengthways and then using a sharp knife (or a lattice cutter), make incisions about 5mm apart right through at a slight angle from the fold to within 1cm of the open ends. Place this piece of pastry onto a greaseproof-lined baking sheet and into the fridge
4
Make a stock syrup by dissolving the sugar in a pan with 300ml of water. Poach the pears in stock syrup until just soft, remove them with a slotted spoon and allow to drain and cool
  • 225g of sugar
  • 4 pears, peeled, cut in half lengthways and core removed)
5
Make the frangipane by adding all the ingredients to the Vitamix. Switch to Variable 1, then slowly turn up to Variable 4 and blend for 1 minute
6
Take the first piece of puff pastry out of the fridge and spread a thick layer of frangipane across it, leaving a 2cm border around the edges
7
Place the pears in two rows down the centre, with the narrow ends facing the centre. Brush round the edge of the pastry with some of the egg wash, take the folded and cut piece of puff pastry out of the fridge and place it at one end over the top of the pears, unfolding it so that the pears are all covered. As you do so, the cut pieces will open to form a lattice
8
Press the two pieces of pastry firmly together all around the edges. Brush all over with the remaining egg wash mixture and place in the fridge for 20 minutes
  • 1 egg yolk, beaten with a splash of water to make an egg wash
9
Place the dartois on a greaseproof-lined baking sheet and into the preheated oven. Cook for 25 minutes. Remove from the oven and douse liberally with icing sugar before cooking for a further 5 minutes until the icing sugar caramelises
  • icing sugar
10
To make the custard, place all the ingredients (except the brandy) in the Vitamix container and secure the lid. Select Variable 1
  • 75g of caster sugar
  • 175ml of milk
  • 125ml of double cream
  • 1/2 vanilla pod, split lengthways and seeds scraped out
  • 3 egg yolks
11
Turn the Vitamix on and slowly increase speed to Variable 10. Blend for 6 minutes, or until heavy steam starts to escape from the vented lid. Add the brandy and blend on low until combined
  • 50ml of brandy, preferably Cognac
12
Serve the dartois warm with lashings of brandy custard and an extra dusting of icing sugar
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Pear dartois with brandy custard

 
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