This recipe deliciously pairs buttery puff pastry with caramelised shallots, ripe pear, creamy stilton and aromatic rosemary. It's an elegant Christmas starter that not only looks stunning but tastes delicious, too – the ideal way to kick off Christmas dinner.
- Preheat the oven to gas 6, 200°C, fan 180°C.
- Roll out the pastry and cut out four circles about 15cm in diameter. Leave to chill in the fridge.
- Melt the butter in a large frying pan, over a medium heat. Add the shallots and cook until softened; this should take around ten minutes, stirring occasionally. Once softened, add the sugar and rosemary and cook for a further minute until beginning to caramelise. Season the mixture with salt and pepper to taste.
- Score a 1cm border around the edge of your pastry circles. Spoon the shallot mixture into the centre of each of the tarts, being careful to not go over the border. Divide the sliced pear between the tarts, crumble over the stilton and finish with a small sprig of rosemary. Glaze the border of the pastry with the egg and bake on the middle shelf of the oven for 20-25 minutes until puffed up and golden brown. Serve immediately, with fresh watercress.
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