I have just made a pretty good version of the famous Tarte Tatin using Josephine de Malines pears. I had a quick look around on the net to see what other versions turned out like and I am well pleased with my results. The last time I made one was in Tasmania and using Tasmanian apples of course.
I do hope the pears are Josephine de Malines, and not common Josephines because they sound so very very French and of course it is one of the Frenchiest of tarts. They are a funny looking pear, not svelte like the Beurre Bosc, they are kind of squat and look closer to a Granny Smith apple than a pear.
When making the caramel base, if you go for a very dark caramel colour you may get a slightly bitter taste but then some people like the bitterness. Gordon Ramsay has served his with an ice-cream made from Italian Gorgonzola. That is an excellent idea I will save for my next one.
I put the small white orchid in the centre of the tart is just to prove it is mine and not a photo I lifted off the net. Ideally if I had leaves from the pear tree they would be my centre garnish. Not that you need a garnish with this dessert, it just looks so rustic and appealing all on its own.
I used my large red cast iron Le Creuset frying pan, it is about 30cm diameter so will make a dessert for at least 6 people. As the pan is enamelled iron it can go from the gas cook top straight into the oven.
The Tarte did not take very long and that is because I used a frozen puff pastry rather than make the pastry. My best excuse is that I was in a hurry, cleaning my house for an inspection and thought the idea of leaving an aroma of a cooked Tarte Tatin around might just create the atmosphere that begs someone to buy our house and start cooking!
Upload the version I have as a PDF by clicking here on the recipe Pear Tarte Tatin by Roz MacAllan If you have always looked at them and shied away from making one, it is time to give it a whirl, it does not take long, is not hard and send me your results. Roz