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Monday, September 30, 2013

Great end to National Honey Month

Pear Tarts with Honey
Photo and text by KARA DiCAMILLO, ecoRI.org


With September coming to an end, I wanted to highlight National Honey Month, a celebratory month that has been held annually during the month of September since 1989. The purpose of it is to promote beekeeping and it’s significant for beekeepers because it signifies the end of honey collection for the year.


Did you know that bees travel some 55,000 miles and tap more than 2 million flowers just to make a pound of honey? 

Many of our fruits and vegetables rely on honeybee pollination. Almonds depend 100 percent on honeybee pollination, while apples, avocados, blueberries, cherries, cranberries and sunflowers are 90 percent reliant on honeybees, according to the National Honey Board.


Here in Rhode Island we have several farms and apiaries whose raw honey products are sold locally: Aquidneck Honey (Middletown); Betty’s Bee Farm (Glendale), Harmony Farms (Harmony); Littlefield Bee Farm (Block Island); River Farm (Saunderstown); Trail’s End Farm (Jamestown) and Wishing Stone Farm (Little Compton).

This week I used less sugar in my recipe and incorporated honey. These tarts are easy to make; it took me just a few minutes of prep time. The result is an impressive dessert for guests, and now you can impress them with a few facts about honey, too.


Pear Tarts with Honey 

Makes 4


1 sheet of puff pastry, defrosted
3 cups of sliced pears, peeled and sliced crosswise into quarter-inch slices

Quarter cup of sugar

3 tablespoons of unsalted butter, small-diced

2 tablespoons of honey

Powdered sugar, for sprinkling
Preheat oven to 400 degrees and prepare the pears.

Cut the sheet of puff pastry into 4 squares and place on a sheet pan that is lined with parchment paper. Place overlapping slices of pear diagonally across the pastry and then one slice on each side of the arranged slices around the edges. Sprinkle the pears evenly with sugar, and then dot them evenly with butter.

Bake for 40 minutes, until the pastry is browned around the edges and the pears are browned as well. The juices and sugars will burn around them in the pan, but don’t worry because the tarts will be fine. 

When the tarts are finished, heat the honey in the microwave and then drizzle it evenly over the top of the tarts. Loosen the tarts with a spatula so they don’t stick to the paper, and then place them on a rack to cool. 

I like to eat them warm, but you can also serve them at room temperature. Sprinkle with a bit of powdered sugar and enjoy.