Pear Chiboust Tart

Crème chiboust is crème patissiere lightened with meringue, in this case, italian meringue. It’s light, mousse-like and the least rich of all crèmes. But on the other hand, it’s also one of the sweetest because of the meringue. The chiboust tart is a classic French tart filled with caramelised apples, soft crème chiboust, and a crisp caramelised sugar crust.  Calvados gives the apple flavour a boost,  but I swapped both the apples and Calvados for pears and Grand Marnier because that’s what I had on hand. Overall a pretty tasty tart, although not one I’d usually choose if I had a choice, haha. I think it’s the burnt sugar and meringue combination, it tastes quite like Baked Alaska which is not my favourite thing. But it’s a fun pastry to make, all the components are easy to make and assemble, and caramelising the sugar is fun/dangerous. It’s usually done with an electric carameliser but it’s not a common piece of equipment to have at home, so I just used a cheap but solid chef’s knife with a wooden handle which I placed directly onto a gas burner to get it red hot (yes, scary!) and then used it to brulée the surface of the chiboust which I had sprinkled with caster sugar. I wouldn’t recommend this technique- it’s pretty (very) dangerous. And sugar catches on fire.. so yea. Lol. Do this at your own risk and open all your windows.

 

 

Toffee and Pear Gingerbread Loaf

I bought Williams pears last week and it’s been looking more and more pitiful as the days went by so I’ve finally baked a cake with them. It wasn’t really meant to look like this- I had planned on making it an upside-down loaf, with the sliced pears arranged neatly on top when it’s been flipped over. The pears floated into the cake batter instead of staying put at the bottom so it’s now.. a normal pear loaf, sans upside-down awesomeness. Oh well, was still delicious though- I used this recipe.