Pear Cranberry Tart with a Farro Buttermilk Crust
Farro Crust (makes 2 crusts)
1 cup Farro flour
1 1/2 cup White Sonora all purpose flour
3/4 teaspoon salt
2 tablespoons sugar
1 cup (2 sticks) very cold unsalted butter
3/4 cup buttermilk (plus 2 tablespoons if you find your dough too dry)
Filling and Glaze
1/4 cup fresh cranberries plus 2 tablespoons for the glaze
1 teaspoon ground ginger
Zest of 1 small lemon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
2 cinnamon sticks
1 cup sugar
1 cup water
1. Mix the flours, salt and sugar together in a large mixing bowl. Chop the cold butter* into small cubes and add to the dry mixture with a hand held pastry blender. When the dough is crumbly and the butter is broken up into pea-sized chunks, add the buttermilk. Mix until the dough is wetted and then turn the mixture out onto the counter to knead it into a ball. Cover the dough with plastic wrap and let the dough rest for 1 hour in the fridge.
2. Preheat the oven to 400° F. Cut the pears in half, spoon out the seeds and cores and set aside as they will be used in the glaze. Thinly slice the pear halves, keeping the halves together (as shown in the picture). Pull the dough out of the fridge and split it into two equal pieces. Place one half in the freezer for another day.
Cover a baking sheet with parchment paper. Lightly flour the parchment paper before placing the dough in the middle. Use a rolling pin to roll the dough into a 20 inch circle (or anything close to a circle will do) Place the pear halves in the middle of the circle, starting from the middle and fanning them out. Leave 2 inches around the edge. Fold up the dough edges around pears, creating a 2 inch free-from crust edge. Bake for 45 minutes.
3. In a heavy bottomed sauce pan mix the sugar, water, spices, cranberries and pear cores. Allow to simmer over low heat while the tart bakes. It should reduce to a thick syrup. After removing the tart from the oven allow it to cool for 10 minutes strain the syrup and pour it over tart.
Best served with vanilla ice cream or a dollop of crème fraiche.
*Working with cold butter is the key to a great pie /tart crust.