Archive for November, 2015

Apple Cranberry Tart


1 3/4 cups all-purpose flour

6 Tbsp white cornmeal

1/2 cup plus 2 tsp sugar, plus more for dusting

1/2 tsp kosher salt

3/4 cup cold unsalted butter, cut into pieces, plus 2 Tbsp, sliced thinly

6 Tbsp sour cream

1/2 cup ice water plus 1/2 cup water

3 Tbsp honey

3 Tbsp fresh lemon juice

1/2 tsp ground cinnamon

8 large tart apples, peeled, cored and sliced

1 1/2 cups fresh cranberries


To make the pastry, combine the flour, cornmeal, 2 tsp sugar, and salt in a food processor.  Add the 3/4 cup butter and pulse until the butter pieces are the size of small peas.  In a bowl, whisk together the sour cream and 1/2 cup ice water.  Drizzle over the dough and pulse for a few seconds until the dough clings together.  Pat the dough into a disk, wrap in plastic wrap, and refrigerate for 20 minutes.

In a large frying pan, warm the 1/2 cup sugar, 1/2 cup water, honey, lemon juice, and cinnamon over medium heat, stirring until the sugar dissolves.  Stir in the apple slices and simmer until tender-crisp, about 3 minutes.  Add the cranberries and simmer just until they start to pop, about 2 minutes.  Using a slotted spoon, transfer the fruit to a bow.  Boil the juices over medium-high heat until reduced slightly and spoon over the fruit.

Preheat the oven to 400°F.  On a lightly floured work surface, roll out the dough into a large rectangle about 1/4-inch thick.  Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet.  Mound the fruit filling onto the dough and spread an even layer, leaving a 2-inch border uncovered.  Bold the border over the fruit, pleating the edges to form a broad rim.  Lay the thin slices of butter over the exposed fruit, then sprinkle with sugar.

Bake until the pastry is golden brown and the fruit is bubbling and tender, about 40 minutes.  Let cool slightly, then serve.

From Williams-Sonoma’s Dessert of the Day: 365 Recipes for Every Day of the Year Cookbook, p281


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Vanilla-Laced Pear Jam

This recipe is from Gretchen, one of our past employees.


  • About 3 1⁄2 pounds fully ripe pears
  • 1⁄4 cup bottled lemon juice
  • 2 teaspoons clear vanilla extract
  • 2 cinnamon sticks
  • 3 cups sugar, divided
  • 1 (1.75-ounce) box Sure-Jell Premium Fruit Pectin for less- or no-sugar-needed recipes


Peel and core the pears. Finely chop the fruit. Measure exactly 7 cups prepared fruit into a 6- to 8-quart pot. Stir in the lemon juice, vanilla and cinnamon sticks.

Mix 1/4 cup of the sugar and the pectin in a small bowl.  Add to fruit in pot, mixing well. Over high heat, bring mixture to a full, rolling boil (that cannot be stirred down), stirring constantly. Stir in remaining sugar. Return to a full, rolling boil and boil exactly 1 minute, stirring constantly. Remove pot from heat. Skim off any foam with a metal spoon.

Ladle jam immediately into hot jars, leaving 1/8 inch head space. Process in a boiling-water canner for 10 minutes, adjusting time for altitude. Jam will set slowly and may take up to 1 week to set completely.

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Fresh Pear Ginger Crisp


1 cup crushed gingersnap cookies (about 20 cookies)

1/2 cup old-fashioned oats

1/2 cup packed brown sugar

1/4 tsp ground ginger

1/4 tsp ground cloves

1/8 tsp salt

1/3 cup butter, softened

7 medium pears (about 2 1/2 pounds), peeled and thinly sliced

2 tablespoons all-purpose flour

Vanilla ice cream, optional


In a small bowl, combine the first six ingredients.  With clean hands, work butter into oat mixture until well combined.  Refrigerate for 15 minutes.

Place pears in a small bowl; add flour and toss to coat.  Transfer to a greased 8-in square baking dish; sprinkle with oat mixture.

Bake, uncovered, at 350° for 35+-40 minutes or until topping is golden brown and fruit is tender.  Serve warm with ice cream if desired.

From Taste of Home’s 2013 Holiday Collection Book.

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