Any cupid should be thrilled to finish a Valentine’s Day meal with this delectable tart from Julia Child’s first cookbook, Mastering the Art of French Cooking. What’s not to love about perfectly ripe pears that have been simmered in red wine, and then magically combined with an almond cream filling and a shortbread cookie crust?
Julia Child composed this recipe in the late 1950’s at a villa in Provence in the south of France not from the Mediterranean Sea. Pears still remain one of Provence’s prized autumn fruits. Julia, however, may have first learned about pear tarts when she was a student in Paris at the prestigious Cordon Bleu during the late 1940’s. After all, the “city of light” had been famous for its pear tarts since the turn of the century.
But, Julia’s version is not just any pear tart. Madame Child ups the flavor ante by cooking her pears first in red wine with a stick cinnamon. The result is a more intense flavor profile, and its bright lipstick-red color should appeal to young and old lovers alike for a special ruby red valentine dessert.
In September 2022 Wine-Knows has leased the very villa in which Julia wrote her two hallmark cookbooks. We have only two spots remaining. For more details on this food and wine homage to Julia, check out our website:
BTW: Julia’s pear tart recipe can be found on page 642 of Mastering the Art of French Cooking, Volume I. If you don’t have a copy, there are several online versions, but the following one is almost a dead-ringer for Julia’s original. (Note: while I prefer bosc pears, any ripe pear will suffice.)
Wishing you a love-filled Valentine's....