Martha demonstrates how easy it is to make a tender, flaky pâte brisée crust — one of the most versatile and essential elements in the baker’s arsenal. This crust can be used to make sweet or savory dishes; Martha offers a variety of options, including mile-high apple pie, a sumptuous tomato tart and more.
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Martha Stewart makes mile high apple pie, pastry enclosed pears and tomato tarts.
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Martha Stewart shows you the best way to remove vanilla bean seeds.
This Week’s Recipe
Pear Tarte Tatin
Prepare Martha Stewart's pear tarte tatin recipe from the pâte brisée episode of Martha Bakes.
- 4 to 5 pears, such as Anjou or Bartlett, peeled
- Juice of ½ lemon
- ¾ cup granulated sugar
- 4 tablespoons (1/2 stick) unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- ½ recipe Pate Brisee (recipe follows)
- Halve and core pears. Set aside one pear half. Quarter remaining pears and transfer to a large bowl. Squeeze lemon over pears and set aside.
- Combine sugar and 3 tablespoons water in an 8-inch cast-iron skillet. Bring mixture to a boil over medium-high heat; immediately reduce heat to medium and cook until mixture begins to thicken and turn amber. Remove from heat and stir in butter.
- Place reserved pear half in center of skillet along with any reserved juices. Decoratively arrange remaining pears, cut side up, in an even layer. If fruit does not completely fill pan, tart will collapse when inverted.
- Place skillet over low heat and cook until syrup thickens and is reduced by half, about 20 minutes. Do not let syrup burn. Remove from heat and let cool.
- Preheat oven to 375°F.
- Roll out pate brisee to a 10-inch circle, about 1/8-inch thick; transfer to a baking sheet and chill until firm, about 30 minutes.
- Place pâte brisée over pears and tuck in edges. Transfer skillet to oven and bake until golden brown, about 40 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack and let cool 15 minutes. Loosen pastry from skillet using a sharp knife. Place a rimmed platter over skillet; quickly and carefully invert. Serve immediately.
Yield: One 8-inch tart
Prepare Martha Stewart's recipe this pie crust or tartlet recipe from the pâte brisée episode of Martha Bakes.
- 2 ½ cups all-purpose flour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup (2 sticks) cold unsalted butter, cut into small pieces
- ¼ to ½ cup ice water
- In the bowl of a food processor, combine flour and salt; pulse to combine. Add the butter, and pulse until mixture resembles coarse crumbs with some larger pieces remaining, about 10 seconds. (To mix by hand, combine dry ingredients in a large mixing bowl, then cut in butter with a pastry blender.)
- With the machine running, add the ice water through the feed tube in a slow, steady stream, just until the dough holds together without being wet or sticky. Do not process more than 30 seconds. Test by squeezing a small amount of the dough together; if it is still too crumbly add a bit more water, 1 tablespoon at a time.
- Turn out the dough onto a clean work surface. Divide in half, and place each half on a piece of plastic wrap. Shape into flattened disks. Wrap in plastic, and refrigerate at least 1 hour or overnight. The dough can be frozen for up to 1 month; thaw overnight in the refrigerator before using.
Yield: Makes two 8-10 inch tarts or single-crust pies, one 8-10 inch double pie crust, or twelve 2.5-3 inch tartlets
Additional recipes and video clips from the episode are available on MarthaStewart.com including: