It is harvest time for beautiful, juicy pears, and I’ve got pear trees laden with fruit this year. There are so many delicious possibilities for fat-free and vegan pear dishes. I’ve recently seen some amazing online recipes for Chocolate-Pear confections, but all of them share common ingredients that I do not eat: butter, milk, cream. I enthusiastically took on the challenge, and today I present an absolutely sumptuous fat-free dairy-free tart that you can serve proudly to anyone you know.
This tart is more accurately a pie, so it is deep, moist, and should be served in thin slices. For the crust, I’ve adapted the wonderful pie crust from “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease” that is built on apple juice and grape nuts. I’ve added some unsweetened cocoa, creating a crisp hearty frame for the deep chocolate filling. I’ve used a great gluten-free chocolate cake mix from Bob’s Red Mill and enhanced it with ground walnuts, resulting in a super moist center studded with vanilla-poached glazed pear. Enjoy this and share it with your friends. They’ll probably hug you, and their healthy hearts will thank you!
Chocolate-Walnut and Pear Tart
1 TBSP unsweetened cocoa
3 TBSP frozen apple juice concentrate
1 1/2 C Grape Nuts cereal (not flakes…they have oil)
Stir the ingredients together until well mixed. Spoon all into a 9″ pie plate, pressing crumbs up the side to form a crust. Bake at 375 degrees for 8 to 10 minutes or until beginning to brown on the edges and crisp. Cool for 5 minutes while you prepare the filling.
1 C shelled walnuts
1 1/2 C Bob’s Red Mill Gluten Free Chocolate Cake Mix
1 TBSP flax meal softened in 3 TBSP of water
1 tsp. vanilla
1 C vanilla soymilk (or any non-dairy milk)
Grind the walnuts for about 1 minute in your food processor. Add the cake mix and pulse until mixed. Add the remaining ingredients and mix 30 seconds until fully mixed. This will be a fairly thick batter. Pour into the cooled crust.
2 ripe Bartlett pears, peeled, cored, halved
1/2 C sugar
1 TBSP vanilla
Put all ingredients into a sauce pan and simmer for about 5 minutes. Drain the pears and slice into 1/8″ thick pieces. Press into the filling, fanning out somewhat for a pretty look. Bake the tart for 15 minutes in a 350 degree oven. If you wish, brush the pears with a bit of apple juice concentrate to glaze them. Return to oven and bake another 20 minutes or until a knife barely comes clean. Do not over bake – you want this to be moist and fudgy.