Tarte aux Poires Belle Helene (avec des noix de Chez Bonneau)

This tart was inspired by that of Beth Dunham. If you follow her link, you’ll see why one would want to do the same. I thought I’d try to replicate hers, but then, up popped my recurring “leftover” them, and I saw some graham crackers that had been in the cupboard too long…. You know the story. So I made a crust detour, and then a filling detour (or two). So, what happened?


Visiting my blog, you’ll see that the post just prior to this one was about making crystalized ginger. That was my first step toward making this tart. I didn’t have and couldn’t quickly find any, so, pushing myself to do a bit more on my own, I…. made my own. So, on to today.


This recipe is composed of the following

  1. CRUST: a graham cracker crust made with butter and some quality powdered cocoa.
    1. 150 g graham crackers
    2. 140 g melted butter
    3. 10 g 100% chocolate cocoa powder
    4. 50 g brown sugar

I processed the cookies in a food processor until it was like smooth sand. Then added the chocolate and brown sugar – pulse. Lastly, added the butter and pulsed until homogenous. Press into the tart/pie pan of your choice. I used two “tools” for pressing and shaping: 1) my 1/4 cup measuring cup with square sides for pressing the bottom and sides, and 2) a bench scraper to shape the edges. (I tried using the small glass jar you see but it didn’t work well for me.)

  1. Filling A: a chocolate ganache (not a part of Beth’s recipe)
    1. 140 g dark chocolate (72% recommended)
    2. 100 g heavy cream
    3. 30 g ginger syrup (saved from making the crystalized ginger)
  2. I did NOT follow standard procedure for making this ganache. Just saying.
    1. I melted the chocolate in a microwave until smooth and easy to stir with a whisk.
    2. Heat the cream in a sauce pan till beginning to boil. Take off heat and begin incorporating the chocolate.
    3. I used my whisk to incorporate the melted chocolate little by little, stirring vigorously to incorporate and smooth the mixture.
    4. Added the ginger – duh.
    5. I would move my pan onto or off of the heat on the stovetop as I felt the need to keep things developing into a smooth, homogeneous mixture. It worked really well.
    6. Note: Remember to take a picture of this stage. Oops! Woah! I DID take a video of pouring it into the crust. Let’s see if I can click it in below or link it….
    7. Ganache in tarte shell…. “the pour”
  1. Filling B: pears sautéed in cinnamon, vanilla, butter, brown sugar and walnuts (Should we call this a topping instead?). NOTE: The following recipe follows closely Beth Dunham’s with some note changes. Also, as you can see, I used my measuring spoons for this part.
    1. 3 pears (peel, cut in half, core) – Beth thinly sliced two pears.
    2. a splash of water to prevent carmelization
    3. 3 tbsp unsalted butter, melted
    4. 3 tbsp brown sugar
    5. 1 vanilla bean (cut open and placed in the sautée pan.(Beth: 1 tsp pure vanilla extract)
    6. 2 small cinnamon sticks (Beth: 1/4 tsp ground cinnamon)
    7. 1/4 cup coarsely chopped walnuts
Vue du ciel

As you can see, that’s it. Now we await judgement that only a knife and fork can bring.

I pray that you and your loved ones have a sweet and beautiful day.