Baked Pear Half-Moons
Mezzelune di Pere
Preheat the oven to 400degrees
Melt the butter in a large sauté pan until bubbling. Add the diced pears and cook, stirring often, until they soften and release their juice, 4-6 minutes. Pour on the rum and flambé with a long match, being careful to keep your face and hands clear. Cook until the alcohol is burned off and the flame subsides, about 1-2 minutes.
Remove the pan from the heat and scoop out the pears with a slotted spoon, leaving as many juices in the pan as possible. Stir the sugar into the pan juices. Return the pan to the heat and simmer, stirring occasionally until the sugar turns the color of dark tea. Add the cream. Careful! As soon as the cream touches the sugar mixture, it will start to splatter, therefore keep your face and hands clear of the pan until it will subside, about 1 minute. Simmer the caramel cream sauce, stirring often, until the caramel dissolves and the sauce thickens slightly 3-4 minutes. Set aside.
Mix the lemon juice with the pears. Place the rounds of puff pastry flat on a counter or pastry board. Spoon about ½ cup of the pear mixture in the middle of each round. Fold the pastry over into a half moon shape and seal the edges pinching them together.
Place the pastries on an baking sheet and brush with a thin glaze of egg. Cut one or two slits as vents in the top of each pastry.
Bake the pastries in the preheated oven for 25-30 minutes until dark, golden brown.
To serve, place the vanilla cream at the bottom of the plate. Place the pear pastries on top, and pour the warm caramel sauce on top of each pastry.