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Pear and Walnut Tart
Crostato Di Pere E Noci
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1/3 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup ground walnuts
1 1/4 cups all-purpose flour
1/2 cup melted unsalted butter
2 teaspoons almond extract
1/4 cup raisins
1/4 cup dark rum
3 pears, peeled, cored and thinly sliced
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 cup chopped walnuts
3 Amaretti cookies, crushed (optional)
2 tablespoons butter, chilled and sliced into thin pieces
1/3 cup apple jelly or apricot preserves
1 tablespoon powdered sugar
For the Walnut Crust:
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Mix the sugar, walnut, flour and salt in a large bowl. Combine the butter and almond extract and pour over the dry ingredients, mixing well with a wooden spoon.
Press the dough into the bottom and up the sides of a 9 inch fluted tart pan and bake in the oven for 10-12 minutes. (This particular type of crust does not require any weights during cooking.) Let cool completely before filling. You can make this crust 2 days ahead of time. If you wish. Simply cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate.
For the Filling:
Soak the raisins in the turn for 1 hour. Drain, reserving the raisins and rum, separately.
Preheat the oven to 350 F. Arrange the pear slices over the bottom of the baked tart crust. Scatter the sugar, soaked raisins, walnuts, Amaretti (if you wish) and butter pieces evenly over the pears. Bake for 35-40 minutes. Remove from the oven and let cool for 10 minutes.
While the tart is cooking, heat the reserved rum in a small saucepan set on medium-high heat and boil until it reduces to about 2 tablespoons, about 3-5 minutes. Add the jelly over the top of the warm baked tart, using a pastry brush to gently and evenly coat.
Once the tart has completely cooled, sprinkle with the powdered sugar and serve!
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