Cranberry Pear Linzer Tart

Can you believe today is February 27th already? Do you know what happens on the 27th of each month? Thats right, I post my daring bakers challenge. Well, this is definitely NOT my Daring Bakers challenge! This is a different post that I've been meaning to share with you for a while and while I have a few quiet minutes to myself this morning while hubby is still asleep and the dishwasher is washing the many dirty dishes from my dinner party last night I am going to write this post! Daring Bakers post to follow this evening after I have had a chance to photograph my dessert... thats right... I really saved it to the last minute this month!
I made this tart on boxing day, hence the sort of Christmassy holly looking thing on top of the tart (if you can't tell what it is, don't feel bad, I just didn't want to throw away leftover pastry!!!). It was really delicious, the pears are lovely and sweet and the cranberries add a tart burst here and there to really balance out the sweetness of the pears. But the part of this recipe that was the most interesting (and the most challenging) was the crust. As you'll see in the ingredients that follow, the majority of the ingredients go into the crust resulting in the most delicious flavour and texture in a pastry crust that I have ever tasted. Be warned though, this dough is not easy to work with... it caused me a lot of frustration, but the delicious results made it worth it!

Pear-Cranberry Linzer Tart
The Best of Fine Cooking Magazine


  • 4 oz (1 cup) walnuts, lightly toasted
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 8 oz (1 3/4 cups) all purpose flour
  • 1 tsp ground cinnamon
  • 1 tsp finely grated lemon zest
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 tsp ground cloves
  • 2 hard-cooked egg yolks, crumbled
  • 8 oz (1 cup) cold unsalted butter, cut into 1/2 inch pieces
  • 2 raw egg yolks
  • 1/2 tsp pure vanilla extract
  • 2 lb ripe pears, peeled, cored, and cut int 1/2 inch slices (about 4 cups)
  • 6 tbsp all purpose flour
  • 1 cup fresh or frozen cranberries, picked through and rinsed
  • 1/2 cup granulated sugar
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 1/4 cup heavy cream or whole milk


  1. To make the dough: in a food processor, grind the walnuts with the first amount of sugar to a sandy texture. Add first amount of flour, cinnamon, lemon zest, salt, cloves and crumbled hard cooked egg yolks. Pulse briefly to combine. Add butter and pulse until dough starts to come together and looks clumpy. Add the raw yolks and vanilla and pulse until well combined. The dough will be sticky and moist - more like a cookie dough than a pastry dough. Cut dough in half and set each half on a large piece of plastic and shape each into a flat disk, using the plastic to help you flatten. Wrap each disk in its plastic wrap and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
  2. To assemble the tart: on a floured work surface, roll each disk of dough onto an 11 inch round, about 1/4 inch thisk. Put one round on a plate and refrigerate, uncovered. Fit the other round into a 9 inch fluted tart pan with removable bottom. Fold the excess dough into the sides of the pan and press to get an edge flus with the side of the pan. Sprinkle 2 tbsp of the flour in the bottom of the tart and spread evenly to cover.
  3. Toss the pears and cranberries with remaining 4 tbsp of flour. Arrand the fruit in the tart shell so that pears lie as flat as possible (as you can see, I just tossed mine in there!!) and there are some berries showing on top. Scrape any remaining flour over the fruit and sprinkle with the other 1/2 cup of sugar. Take the other piece of dough from the fridge and cut into 8 1-inch wide strips. Arrange 4 strips evenly spaced over the top of the tart. Then on a shart diagonal to the first four, set the other four strips on top so that the overlapping layers make diamond-shaped windows. Trim the ends of the strips and press them into the edges of the tart.
  4. Position the rack in bottom of oven, line a heavy rimmed baking sheet with foil and set on the rack. Heat the oven to 350F. Whis the last egg yolk with the 1/4 cup cream. Brush top strips with the egg glaze.
  5. Bake on the baking sheet until the pastry is golden brown, 45 minutes to 1 1/4 hours. Let cool on a rack for 1 hour before serving.

This is such a delicious and versatile dessert and the crust really is so different tasting that it is worth giving it a try! You most definitely won't regret it and the people you share it with will be glad you went to the trouble of making it. :)

Happy Baking my Friends! Stay tuned for my Daring Bakers post later today.


  1. Can't wait to see your Daring Baker Challenge... Mine is up... Posted it this morning, while the dishwasher was washing the dishes and the boyfried was still asleep in bed. lol

  2. I can't wait to post my challenge either! It was delicious - we ate it at our dinner party last night! Definitely something to make again. I loved how easy it was. :) I'll stop by and check yours out.

  3. Your tart looks absolutely delicious, will come to check your DB challenge.

  4. Your tart looks and sounds delish. I'll be back to see your DB challenge! Thanks for stopping by my site too!