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Wisconsin Cheddar Cheese and Pear Tart


Wisconsin cheddar cheese crust:
1/2 cup vegetable shortening
1 cup flour
1/8 teaspoon salt
1/8 teaspoon sugar
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Wisconsin sharp cheddar cheese
4 to 6 teaspoons very cold water

Filling and topping:
4 ounces melted butter
1 cup flour
1/2 cup sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 cup (4 ounces) shredded Wisconsin sharp cheddar cheese
1 3/4 pound firm, but ripe pears
Juice of 1 lemon
Blueberry, strawberry, and raspberry purees
Whipped cream

Cooking Directions:

Crust: Process crust ingredients until ball forms. Refrigerate one hour or until firm enough to roll. Fit into tart pan. Patching is okay. Bake at 400° F for 10 minutes, with pie weights. Remove weights and bake until golden and crisp. Cool.

Filling and topping: Mix together butter, flour, sugar, salt and cheese with pastry blender until crumbly. Peel, core and cut pears into 3/4 to 1 inch slices. Arrange in baked shell, overlapping very closely together in single layer around inside of crust. Mound a swirl of slices in center. Sprinkle cheese mixture over pears. Place onto baking sheet and bake at 400° F for 35 to 40 minutes until pears are tender and crumbles are brown. Serve warm.

Three Berry Sauce: Combine equal parts blueberry, strawberry and raspberry purees and sweeten, to taste.

To serve: Place circle of sauce on bottom of plate. Place slice of tart in center of plate, and top with a dollop of lightly sweetened whipped cream.

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