Walnut and Pear Tarts

, from Issue #24. September, 2015
Photography by Aaron McLean.
Walnut and Pear Tarts


100 grams walnuts
1/3 cup plain flour
1⁄4 cup caster sugar
1⁄4 cup brown sugar
100 grams butter, melted
finely grated zest 1⁄2 an orange
2 free-range eggs
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
2 pears, firm but ripe
3 tablespoons apricot jam, warmed
extra roasted walnuts for garnish if desired
mascarpone to serve


Preheat the oven to 180°C.

Grease 6 x 140ml muffin or small tart tins and line each with a circle of baking paper, large enough to come up the sides of the tins. Press the paper against the sides, pleating it where necessary.

Spread the nuts out in a shallow baking tray and roast in the oven until golden. Cool and grind finely in a small food processor.

Put the walnuts, flour, both sugars, butter, orange zest, eggs and the vanilla extract in a bowl and beat until well combined.

Divide the mixture between the tins. Peel and core the pears and cut into quarters. Slice thinly and arrange on top of the batter.

Bake for 25 minutes until the tops are golden and the filling is puffed and firm to the touch. Remove from the oven and brush the tops with the warm apricot jam. Sprinkle with the extra walnuts if using.

To serve: Arrange on a plate and serve with a spoonful of mascarpone. Makes 6