Thursday, October 9, 2014

Almond Pear Cream Cheese Torte

Almond-Pear Cream Cheese Torte recipe

This might be my favorite dessert of all time.  I seriously could eat the entire thing in one sitting!
This recipe is taken from a magazine several years ago and is always a crowd pleaser.

As usual, I've cut back on the sugar from the original recipe.  I tend to use 3/4 of a cup, (divided into 1/4 cup per section instead of 1/3), rather than 1 cup divided in the original recipe.  I usually like desserts that are less sweet, so this totally works for our family, however there was one time that my pears were not sweet enough, so I should have used more sugar.  Taste and add more if needed.

1/2 cup (1 stick) butter softened
3/4 cup sugar; divided
1 cup flour
1/8 tsp almond extract (optional)
1 pkg (8oz) reduced fat cream cheese
1 egg
1/2 tsp vanilla
1/2 tsp cinnamon
4 cups sliced peeled pears (about 4 medium)
1/4 cup sliced almonds
1/8 tsp almond extract (optional)

Preheat oven to 425 degrees.  Beat butter and 1/4 cup of the sugar in small bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until light and fluffy.  Add flour and 1/8 tsp almond extract; mix well.  Spread firmly onto bottom and 1 in. up sides of a 9-in. springform pan.

Beat cream cheese and 1/4 cup of the remaining sugar in same bowl with electric mixer on medium speed until well blended.  Add egg, vanilla and almond extract; mix well.  Spread evenly over crust.  Combine remaining 1/4 cup sugar and the cinnamon.  Add to pears in large bowl; toss to coat.  Arrange over cream cheese layer; sprinkle with almonds.

Bake 10 minutes.  Reduce temperature to 375; continue baking 25 min. or until center is set.  Cool on wire rack.  Loosen torte from rim of pan.  Cover and refrigerate 3 hours before serving.  Store leftover torte in refrigerator.

makes 12 servings.