Pear Spice Muffins…Another Snack Option

I had few portable baked snacks and a few bosc pears so I figured it was time for a new muffin recipe. This is a riff off a recipe out of Annalise Robert’s cookbook; Gluten-Free Baking Classics. It is  similar to my recipe for apple nut muffins that I created from her banana muffin recipe. If I had to have just one GF cookbook hers would be the one for me.

Do use a fairly firm pear; I used a bosc which is naturally great for baking but almost any firm pear will do. Notice I didn’t say “hard”. Nope to that; not gonna taste great.  Don’t chop them super fine or big; 1/3 inch dice is good.

I always enjoy eating a muffin still warm out of the oven. It is smart to freeze any you won’t eat in 2 days; ziplock freezer bag works great.  They make super snacks.  These  muffins are kinda delicate; if you want to take them on a hike or car ride put them in a plastic food box – the rigid sides will keep your muffins safe from crushing.

Pear Spice Muffins              

2 cups brown rice flour mix (see below)

2/3 c granulated sugar (can use coconut palm sugar: just increase milk by 2 Tbsp.)

1 tbsp. baking powder

1 tsp. baking soda

¾ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

1 1/2 tsp cinnamon

skimpy 1/2 tsp. nutmeg

1  1/2  c chopped firm pear; peel and core! (about 2 pears)

½ c chopped walnuts

2 large eggs beaten

½ c milk, 1 or 2 percent

½ c canola oil

DIRECTIONS:  Heat oven to 375, placing the rack in middle of oven.  Spray muffin pans with cooking spray.  One batch makes 14-16 muffins.

Mix all dry ingredients in bowl of stand mixer or big bowl

Add pear chunks and walnuts; stir to coat them with dry mix

Combine milk and oil,  Beat in eggs.  Add liquids to big bowl; stir until blended.

Fill muffin pans 2/3 full.  I use a big serving spoon and fill it about half way to dump in each muffin space. Sprinkle the top with a bit of raw old fashioned oatmeal; 2-3 Tbsp. should do it or try  cinnamon sugar.

Bake 20-24 min until golden brown. I used my convection setting and did them for 17 minutes. Perfect. Do not over bake or they will taste dry.  Rest five minutes and then remove from the pans and cool on a rack.

Freezes well for up to 3 weeks.  Keeps in fridge (well wrapped) a few days.

Brown Rice Flour Mix base mix
2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch

1/3 c tapioca flour

Pear Cranberry Rustic Tart

A friend gifted me some homegrown pears. What delish dessert to make? How about a rustic tart? I was time limited so no time for a raft of cute little tartlets that had to have their crust rolled out one at a time and fitted into the 4 tartlet pan. Good plan. Then, I added some frozen cranberries to zing it up. Plus a touch of cinnamon and allspice. And a sprinkle of glittery sugar to fancy it up.  Just delish!

I used some small Moonglow pears, another good choice would be bosc pears, just make sure they are within that narrow  ripe pear window; not under ripe and not squishy.  The holy grail of pears; that moment of ripe before they go bad.  That. They need to be peeled, cored and then chopped, in that order. Especially bosc pears; their skin is not tasty but the are great for baking with.

pear cranberry tartPear Cranberry Rustic  Tart

First, make the crust and chill it a bit while you peel, core and slice the pears

GF Pie Crust:

1 c plus 2 tbsp brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)

2 Tbsp sweet rice flour

1 Tbsp granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

6 Tbsp cold butter cut into 6 chunks

1 lg egg, room temperature

2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add egg and juice.  Mix until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into a flat fat disc with your hands. Put it in a pie bag, on a large piece of sturdy plastic or on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), put another piece of wax paper on top and chill it all in your fridge 15 minutes

Filling;

3 -4 cups peeled and chopped pears

2/3 cup frozen or fresh cranberries

1/4 cup sugar

1 Tbsp. granulated tapioca

1/2 tsp cinnamon

1/8 tsp. allspice

a sprinkle salt

Mix dry ingredients; add to the fruit in a bowl, stir and let sit while you roll out the crust.

Directions: Roll out the somewhat  chilled crust between the two sheets of wax paper into a disc; maybe 14 inches, try to get the thickness even, no thick middle! I use my pie bag as it works great. Peel off one side of paper and place on pan, centered.  Remove other slice of wax paper or plastic.

Using a big spoon place your filling carefully on the crust but leave a 1 ½ inch border of crust untouched all around the fruit. Fold that excess crust up to make walls around the fruit filling. Sprinkle with 1-2 tsp. chunky sugar.

Bake at 375 degrees for 35 minutes; golden brown crust and a bubbling, cooked looking filling.  Cool at least an hour before cutting. Great with a scoop of vanilla ice cream!

pear tart slice

Took this by candlelight outside on my back porch just before taking a bite! MMMMM

 

Pear Frangipane Tart for Dessert

Pies are my favorite thing to bake. You might think that muffins would be my choice; they are great snacks and I am often blogging a recipe for tasty muffins but nothing makes me happier for dessert than a slice of homemade pie.  Plus I am ever on the hunt for great pie/tart recipes for my self declared year of the pie!  So when I saw this new recipe come up this September on Annalise Roberts’ website; I knew I had to try it.

I used just barely ripe Bartlett pears.  I didn’t peel them as the skin was very thin.  Otherwise I followed the recipe exactly.  The crust is her regular pie crust and you prebake it and let it cool to room temperature before filling the crust.  Only difference is you make the crust rise up above the tart pan wall; so it is at least an inch to 1.5 inches tall.  You have to poach the pears first and let them cool, she suggests that you could do that the day before.  It is really neat how the frangipane filling bubbles up and surrounds the pear slices to create a tart that is sort of like an upside down pineapple pie but with pears and almonds.

It got a touch darker than I planned but great almond flavor, pears are perfect and the crust as good as any I have ever made.  A keeper for company occasions and totally satisfied my pear cravings.  A certain someone who is not fond of pears loved it and took a piece home with him for enjoying the next day. Winner!

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So, if you like tarts and pears give this recipe a try; it is pretty similar to her cherry frangipane tart recipe although it requires a glaze for brushing on the pears before baking.  I am guessing that if you use melted apple or peach jelly you could skip that step of reducing the poaching syrup to the thickness of a glaze.  I went the whole deal and loved every bite of it; keeper recipe for me.

I ate it with some really good vanilla ice cream, with plain Greek yogurt and with no accompaniment; great all three ways.

The recipe can be found at: http://mygluten-freetable.com/2016/09/gluten-free-pear-frangipane-tart/

Pear Crumb Tart

This recipe I recently created is for all the pear lovers out there.  I know, I know, pears are under ripe one day and then rotting the next. They are tricky to catch just right.  But it’s worth the effort, if you enjoy the delicate flavor of a ripe pear.  I used Bartlett pears as that was what I had on hand plus they are quick to use because you can leave their skin on for this recipe.bartlett pears I am a fan of the bosc pear but you usually need to peel them.  They also might need to bake an extra five or ten minutes depending on how ripe they are. bosc pears

Only four or five good sized pears make this tart;  one more if they are on the small side. They should be somewhat firm but not hard; close to the eating state of ripeness.

I used a slight variation on my GF tart shell crust which is from Annalise Roberts’ book; Gluten-Free Baking Classics.  It is very easy; hand pressed into your tart pan.  I call this is a cookie crust; sweet and slightly crumbly, very yummy.

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Angie’s Pear Tart

Crust

1 cup brown rice flour mix

¼ cup sugar

1 tsp. xanthan gum

½ tsp. cinnamon

5 tbsp. cold unsalted butter, in 5 chunks

1/2 tsp. vanilla extract

½-1 tsp. water

Directions:

Mix the dry ingredients in a stand mixer, cut in the butter by mixing it at a med low speed until crumbly.  Add vanilla and mix well.  If it is really dry looking add the tsp. of water.  Press into the bottom and up the sides of your tart shell as evenly as you can make it.

For this recipe I use a 9 inch tart pan with a removable bottom.   I think any low pie pan or tart pan will work.  Bake it at 350 degrees for 10 minutes unless you have a bottom heat oven like I do; skip that step if you have a pizza oven.

Filling

4-5 ripe Bartlett pears, sliced – not thick or too thin

¼ cup sugar (1/3 cup if you like it more sweet)

1 tbsp. GF flour or 2 tbsp. instant tapioca (I prefer tapioca)

The grated peel of one small lemon

The juice of half that lemon

More directions: Slice the pears right into the mixing bowl, cutting out the center core and seeds. Pour or squeeze the fresh lemon juice over the fruit. Mix the sugar, peel and flour and sprinkle over the pears.   Turn them over with a big spoon and gently dump the mixture into the crust.   Spread it so there an no low spots or high areas. It doesn’t have to look perfect, slightly disarrayed is just fine. Make the crumb topping.

Crumb topping

Put all four ingredients in the same mixing bowl you made the bottom crust in and mix well with mixer paddle until crumbs form.

¾ c brown rice flour mix

½ c granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

1/3 c cold butter cut into six chunks

Final steps: Sprinkle lots of crumb topping all over your pears, don’t skimp! Bake 35-40 minutes until the pears are soft if pricked with a fork.  Do not over brown the crust. thanksgiving meal 013

Let cool before serving.

This tart might be just perfect with a scoop of vanilla ice cream on the side.  Pear heaven for those of us who crave their lush flavor! My dad adored pears – I guess that is where I get my love of them.  The cinnamon crust and the lemon add just a touch of complexity to the finished tart.

 

Brown Rice Flour Mix  Identical to King Arthur’s gf blend.
2 c brown rice flour (finely ground)

2/3 c potato starch – Not potato flour!

1/3 c tapioca flour

Apple Pear Tartlets: Terrific

Apples and pears go together delightfully and fall is the perfect time to indulge in baking them into tartlets for company. I love to make individual tarts because they make people feel so special when you each get your own tartlet. Use what ever kind of baking apples you have. Good choices are red Rome, Empire, Golden Delicious, but no to Fuji, Red Delicious or Gala apples. I got mine from an actual apple orchard (Bechdolts which is south of Hellertown, PA.) I like to buy their small basket of seconds which are cheaper and just as fresh as can be especially compared to grocery store apples. Plus the taste is the same as the fancy unblemished ones in the display baskets. Bosc pears are perfect for baking; great flavor and texture.

I used Annalise Robert’s crust recipe and flour mixture. I think this crust tastes terrific and has a wonderful texture.

2014-10-26 pasta tower 005These are simple tarts: no need to make them perfect looking. I used a fork to press around the crust before I lay the fruit in it. I cut out leaves from the leftover crust to make a sort of a top crust. The coarse sugar adds a certain eye apple and crunch. Enjoy!

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Rustic Pear Apple Tartlets

Crust:
1 c plus 2 tbsp brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)
2 tbsp sweet rice flour
1 Tbps. granulated sugar
½ tsp xanthan gum
¼ tsp salt
6 Tbps. cold butter cut into 6 chunks
1 lg egg
2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Spray 4 inch metal tart pans or 4 inch mini deep dish pie pans with cooking spray, dust with white rice flour. Set aside.

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer. Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal. Add egg and juice. Mix until it comes together into big chunks. Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes.

Cut it into 4 balls and roll out each ball into a small pie crust in a pie bag or between the two sheets of wax paper, try to get the thickness even, no thick middle! Peel off one side of paper and place in mini
pie pan, centered. Remove other slice of wax paper. Crimp edges all around. Do again until you have 4 shells and use all the crumb leftovers to make a fifth tartlet crust. I actually do two of them side by side and turn them out onto the tartlet pans together. Repeat for other four shells.

Filling:

2 medium sized yellow delicious or other baking apples
1 large bosc pear

Peel apples, quarter, cut out core, slice into 1/3 inch thick slices. Same for pear except you can leave the peel on if you like. Or peel! Mix in a large bowl with:

3 tbsp. granulated sugar (4 if you like it sweet)
1 tbsp. minute tapioca
1/4 tsp. cinnamon
A sprinkle of ground nutmeg.

Heap into tartlet shells. Top with a leaf cut out of the spare crust. Sprinkle with coarse sugar.

Bake 375 for 40-45 minutes until lightly browned. Cool before serving with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.
Brown Rice Flour Mix- (same as King Arthur gf flour blend)
2 c brown rice flour
2/3 c potato starch
1/3 c tapioca flour

Originally published October 2014.

Fruity Winter Tart

Well, this is my winter dessert Chopped blog post (Food Network show)…. I have some fresh cranberries, two almost ripe pears, one ripe apple, leftover crumb pie topping and slivered almonds.  What to make? I didn’t have a recipe that suited those specific ingredients so I threw together this pretty tart with the three fruits for a filling and a very easy topping.  Cranberries are good for you and they add a sparkling flavor to the apple/pear mix.

winter fruit tart 010

This turned out quite good, there is a crisp cookie crust covered with a mixture of sweetened fruits and a crumb and almond topping.  We had slices of it still warm with a scoop of vanilla ice cream tonight; perfect. Someone had seconds! I restrained myself.  Besides, I had a bigger slice of tart. And yes, the person having seconds, he does not need to avoid wheat but this tart made him want more!

This is a simple recipe; toss the fruit with sugar and flour.  And it looks like it came from the bakery.  If you make this tart I promise you no one will even believe it is GF.  They will just beg for seconds or thirds! I can’t wait to bake it again.

Note: we ate the rest of it today, still got but I think it is at best optimal flavor while still slightly warm.  I plan to try variations on it using other fruits; maybe blueberries instead of cranberries.  But it turned out great for a first time ever recipe.

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Winter Fruit Tart

Start by making a gf cookie crust and the crumb topping.

Cookie crust

Place the following in a stand mixer bowl and combine

1 cup GF flour (recipe below)

¼ cup granulated sugar

1 tsp xanthan gum

½ tsp cinnamon

Mix well, add 5 tbsp cold butter, cut into 6-7 chunks.  Mix on low until the butter is just crumbs blended in.

Add 1 tsp. vanilla extract and 1 tbsp water.  Blend well.

Pour into a ten inch tart pan that was sprayed with cooking spray.  Spread it up the sides ½ an inch.  Press gently in so it is a cohesive crust but do not press really hard or it will be like concrete when you finish baking it!

Crumb topping

Put all four ingredients in the same mixing bowl you made the bottom crust in and mix well with mixer paddle until crumbs form.

¾ c brown rice flour mix

½ c sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

1/3 c cold butter cut into six chunks

You will use a heaping ½ cup of the crumbs. Put the rest in a tightly sealing glass container and store in the fridge for your next pie/tart. It should keep for several weeks.

Almond Topping: mix well

½ cup crumb topping

¼ cup slivered almonds

Heat the oven to 375 degrees while you make the filling.

Filling

1 baking apple

2 nearly ripe Bartlett pears

1 cup raw cranberries

½ cup sugar

1 ½ tbsp. gf flour mix

¼ tsp. cinnamon

Peel, core and slice thinly the cooking apple and core/slice the two pears, put in a mixing bowl with the washed cranberries.  Be sure to pick over the cranberries and remove any soft or iffy ones.  Add the sugar, flour and cinnamon, mix with a spoon to coat the fruit.

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Pour into the crust.  Sprinkle the tart with the almond crumb topping.  Place in the oven and bake 40-45 minutes or until bubbly, lightly browned and a fork goes through the apple slices easily.  Cool at least 20 minutes.  Serve warm or cold.  Enjoy!

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Brown Rice Flour Mix
2 c brown rice flour (finely ground)

2/3 c potato starch – Not potato flour!

1/3 c tapioca flour

Rustic Apple Pear Tartlets for Dessert Tonight

10-25-14 014 Apples and pears go together delightfully.  Fall is the perfect time to indulge in baking them into tartlets for company.  I like to make individual tarts sometimes because they make people feel so special when you each get your own tartlet.

Use what ever kind of baking apples you have.  I got mine from an actual apple orchard, Bechdolts to be exact!  I like to buy their small baskets of seconds which are inexpensive and just as fresh as can be especially compared to grocery store apples.  Plus the taste is the same as the fancy unblemished ones in their display baskets.

I used Annalise Robert’s crust recipe and flour mixture. I think this crust tastes terrific and has a wonderful texture.

These are simple tarts: no need to make them perfect looking.  I used a fork to press around the crust in each tartlet before I lay the fruit in it.  I cut out leaves from the leftover crust to make a sort of a top crust.  The mixing of the two fruits gives every bite a different taste and the spices add a delicate flavor. I wanted the fresh fruit flavor to be the highlight so I didn’t use much spicing. The coarse sugar adds a certain eye apple and crunch.  Enjoy!

Rustic Apple Pear Tartlets

Crust:

1 c plus 2 tbsp brown rice flour mix (at bottom of recipe)

2 tbsp sweet rice flour

1 Tbps. granulated sugar

½ tsp xanthan gum

¼ tsp salt

6 Tbps. cold butter cut into 6 chunks

1 lg egg

2 tsp fresh orange or lemon juice

Spray 4 inch metal tart pans or 4 inch mini deep dish pie pans with cooking spray, dust with white rice flour. Set aside.

Mix dry ingredients in bowl of stand electric mixer.  Add butter and mix until crumbly and resembling coarse meal.  Add egg and juice.  Mix until it comes together into big chunks.  Shape into a ball with your hands. Put it on a crust sized piece of wax paper (14 x 14 inches more or less), flatten the crust ball some; put on top of it another piece of wax paper and chill it all in your fridge 15-20 minutes.  I used my pie bag for rolling out the crusts; works so great at making an even thin crust.

Cut it into 4 balls and roll out each ball into a small pie crust in a pie bag or between the two sheets of wax paper, try to get the thickness even, no thick middle! Peel off one side of paper and place in mini tart pan, centered.  Remove other slice of wax paper.  Crimp edges all around.  Do again until you have 4 shells and use all the crumb leftovers to make a fifth tartlet crust.  I actually do two of them side by side and turn them out onto the tartlet pans together. Repeat for other four shells.  I ended up with five tartlets; the last being in an individual tartlet pan, about 5 inches in diameter.

Filling:

2 medium sized yellow delicious apples

1 large bosc pear

Peel apples, quarter, cut out core, slice into 1/3 inch thick slices. Same for pear except you can leave the peel on if you like.  Or peel!  Mix in a large bowl with:

3 tbsp. granulated sugar (if you like things pretty sweet add another tablespoon of sugar)

1 tbsp. minute tapioca

1/4 tsp. cinnamon

A sprinkle of ground nutmeg.

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Let stand five minutes and then heap the fruit into tartlets.  I mounded mine a bit so they would be still full after baking.  Top with a leaf cut out of the spare crust.  Sprinkle with coarse sugar.

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Bake 375 for 40-45 minutes until lightly browned.  Cool before serving with a scoop of vanilla ice cream.

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Brown Rice Flour Mix– for crust
2 c brown rice flour

2/3 c potato starch

1/3 c tapioca flour