2 sheets pre-rolled butter puff pastry
1 kilogram firm but ripe pears, I used Beurre Bosc
⅔ cup brown sugar
3 tablespoons cornflour
1 teaspoon ground ginger
½ teaspoon ground cinnamon and cardamom
¼ teaspoon grated fresh nutmeg
¼ teaspoon sea salt
ice cream or softly whipped cream and icing sugar for dusting
Grease a 6 hole, 150ml capacity muffin tin.
Preheat the oven to 180°C fan bake.
Roll each sheet of pastry out on a lightly floured board until a little thinner. Stamp out 6 x 12cm circles and line each tin, bringing the pastry up above the rim of each one to contain the pears. Chill until firm.
Peel, quarter and core the pears then cut into 1cm thick slices.
Combine the remaining ingredients in a large bowl and add the pears, tossing well to coat every slice.
Spoon the pears into the pastry cases, stacking them above the rim as they will reduce down during cooking. Spoon over any spiced juices left in the bowl.
Bake on the lowest shelf in the oven for 40 minutes until the pastry is crisp and golden and the pears are bubbling and tender. The pastry needs to be well cooked or the tarts will be soggy. Run a small palette knife between the pastry and the tin to release any stuck-on bits from the sides. Let the tarts rest for at least 10 minutes before removing from the tins.
To serve: Dust with icing sugar and top with ice-cream or softly whipped cream. Serve immediately. Makes 6.