Port Wine Pears and Blue Cheese Tart

Wisconsin Cheese Port Wine Pears and Blue Cheese Tart  Recipe
Active Time
55 Minutes


Pastry Cream:

Walnut Crust:

Poached Pears:


Look for the Proudly Wisconsin Badge when shopping for cheese. Any brand of Wisconsin Blue can be used in this recipe.


Pastry Cream:

  1. Bring milk and rosemary to a gentle boil in a large saucepan over medium heat, stirring constantly. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 4 minutes, stirring constantly. Remove from the heat. Discard rosemary.
  2. Whisk the cornstarch, sugar and egg yolks in a bowl until blended. Whisk in 1/2 cup hot milk. Return all to saucepan, whisking constantly. Cook and stir over low heat until mixture reaches 160°F and is thickened, about 5-6 minutes. (Do not boil.) Remove from the heat. Stir in vanilla.
  3. Pour pastry cream through a fine mesh strainer into a bowl. Whisk in 1 cup blue cheese and butter until smooth. Place bowl into a larger bowl filled with ice water. (Do not stir.) Cool to room temperature, about 2-4 minutes. Remove from the ice water. Press plastic wrap onto surface of cream. Refrigerate for at least 4 hours or overnight.

Walnut Crust:

  1. Place walnuts into a food processor; cover and pulse until just finely ground. Add flour and sugar; pulse until blended. Add cold butter; pulse until mixture resembles pea-sized crumbs. Add egg yolk; pulse to combine. Add water, a tablespoon at a time, pulsing after each addition until dough just holds together when pinched. Wrap pastry in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.
  2. Heat oven to 375°F.
  3. Press pastry onto bottom and up sides of a greased 14 x 4-inch rectangular tart pan with removable bottom. Prick bottom of pastry with a fork. Freeze for 15 minutes. Line pastry with parchment paper. Fill with pie weights or dried beans. Bake for 15 minutes. Carefully remove parchment and pie weights. Bake for 10-15 minutes longer or until golden brown. Cool on a wire rack.

Poached Pears:

  1. Combine the wine, sugar, vanilla, cinnamon and orange zest in a large saucepan; add pears. Add enough water to cover the pears. Bring to a boil. Reduce heat to low. Simmer, uncovered, for 25-30 minutes or until pears are tender, turning once. Remove from the heat. Cool pears completely in liquid.
  2. Cut pears in half lengthwise. Remove ends and cores. Place pears cut side down on paper towels and pat dry. Cut each half into slices.
  3. Spread pastry cream over crust. Arrange pears on top. Sprinkle with the walnuts, rosemary and remaining blue cheese. Drizzle with honey.

Cheesemonger Tip

Select for cheesemonger info

Do you have questions when shopping for cheese? Ask the cheesemonger! A cheesemonger specializes in the buying and selling of high-quality cheese, usually available in the specialty section of a grocery store or cheese shop. Knowledgeable and passionate, a cheesemonger is a go-to resource for cheese varieties and pairings, proper cheese storage and handling, its cooking applications and cheese brand information.

Salemville® Amish Blue Cheese has won awards at the 2011 American Cheese Society and 2008 World Championship Cheese Contest, and it's been recognized for well-balanced earthy flavors. Looking for a bolder piquant blue? Try the extra-aged Salemville® Reserve.

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