Yesterday my birthday "cake" was one of my favorite desserts. Walt made it for me (or us). It's called a tarte amandine and this one is made with pears. Amandine derives from the word amande (almond), and the body of the tarte is a sweet, eggy almond custard.
Tarte amandine aux poires
1 pie shell (pâte brisée)
6 or 7 or 4 poached pear halves
100 g softened butter (7 Tbsp.)
100 g sugar (7 Tbsp.)
2 eggs, lightly beaten
100 g powdered almonds (8 fl. oz.)
25 g flour (3 Tbsp.)
10 cl pear (or other) brandy
Pre-heat the oven to 350ºF / 180ºC.
Cream together the softened butter and the sugar to make a light and fluffy mixture.
Add the beaten eggs and then the almond powder and flour. Mix well and add the (optional) brandy (or a few drops of vanilla extract).
Line a baking dish with the pie crust (home-made or store-bought). Prick the bottom to keep the crust from puffing up as it cooks and pour in the almond custard mixture.
Place the poached pear halves (fresh or from a can) on top of the almond mixture, pressing them in gently. Bake the pie
Bake the tart for about 30 minutes, until golden brown.