Friday, January 21, 2011

Pear Frangipane Crostata

I needed to bring a dessert to our friends house for a potluck dinner tonight. So, I was browsing through my binder which contains printed recipes that catch my attention on-line or either that I rip out of my magazines. This recipe for a Pear Frangipane Crostata looked yummy and I have never made anything like this before. Plus, I had all the ingredients I needed at home already -- minus the almond paste which was super expensive ($6 for a 7 ounce tube!) I made my own pie crust for the first time which really wasn't hard to make if you own a food processor. The Crostata came out great and we served it with Tahitian vanilla ice cream. This recipe is a keeper!

Perfect Piecrust
Recipe complements of Ladies Home Journal magazine
Prep: 15 min

2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
1 tsp salt
1 Tbsp sugar
12 tbsp (1 ½ sticks) cold, unsalted butter, cut into pieces
¼ cup chilled shortening
1 Tbsp white vinegar
½ cup very cold water

Directions: In a food processor, pulse together the flour, salt and sugar. Add the butter and shortening. Pulse 8 to 10 times or until mixture is coarse crumbs and some of the butter is pea-size. (Alternately, combine in a bowl using a pastry blender or a fork.) In a measuring cup, combine vinegar with ½ cup cold water. While pulsing processor, drizzle in just enough water mixture to form dough, 5 to 8 tbsp. (Dough may be slightly dry but will hold together when you pinch it.) Halve dough, wrap in plastic wrap and press into disks. Chill 1 hour or until ready to use. May be frozen for up to 2 months.

Pear Frangipane Crostata
Recipe complements of Ladies Home Journal magazine
Prep: 35 min, Start to finish: 1 hr 15 min
All assembled and ready for the oven.
4 oz almond paste
2 eggs
4 tsp cornstarch
 tsp salt
1 single crust of Perfect Piecrust (see recipe above)
3 pears, cored, cut into 1/2-inch slices
1 tbsp fresh lemon juice
2 tbsp apricot preserves
¼ cup sliced almonds, toasted
Directions: Heat oven to 375° with rack in the lower third. In a food processor, combine almond paste, 1 egg, cornstarch and salt until completely blended. Roll crust on flour-dusted parchment into a 12- to 13-inch circle. Spread almond mixture in the center, leaving a 2-inch space around the edge. Toss pears with lemon juice and arrange on top of almond mixture. Gently fold over crust edge,pleating, just covering edges of pears. Transfer crostata, on parchment, to a baking sheet. Whisk remaining egg and brush edge of crust with a little egg wash. Bake until crust is deep golden and pears are soft, about 40 min; cover crostata loosely with foil for the last 10 min to prevent over browning. Heat apricot preserves and brush over pears. Sprinkle with almonds and serve warm or cooled. Makes 6 servings.
All dressed and ready for the party.


  1. Thanks for leaving us the rest of your crustata, we had the rest for lunch the next day! My mother in law had some too, and she thought it tasted really good. Everything I tried from you, is a keeper in my book :)!

  2. Thanks Aisha! I will have to bring over some bagels for you guys to try next.

  3. Jess, I tried this recipe last night, and everyone loved it so much, I made another one with apples to take to a dinner party tonight! I even got compliments from a professional pastry chef/food engineer on the "perfect pie crust" This one is definitely a keeper--BRAVO!!

  4. That is so awesome Rachel! So glad you enjoyed it. I have made this recipe a couple of times now too. You should try the apple dumpling recipe too -- that is a keeper!