In this simple dessert, the pears are first caramelized and then baked in batter to produce a succulent flan.
For the caramelized fruit:
3 large or 4 medium pears
2 tbsp. butter
2 tbsp. sugar
For the batter:
1/2 cup (75 g.) flour
1/2 cup (100 g.) sugar
1 cup (1/4 liter) milk
2 tbsp. crème fraîche or heavy cream
1/4 tsp. salt
Preheat your oven to gas mark 6 (400 F., 205 C.). Butter a baking dish with sides about 2 inches (5 cm) high. It can be round, square or rectangular.
Quarter the pears, core and peel. Cut each quarter in half lengthwise.
Melt the butter in a heavy-bottomed pan over medium-high heat. Add the pears and cook 5 minutes, stirring occasionally. Add 2 tbsp. sugar, turn up the heat and cook 10 minutes more. As the pears begin to brown, you need to keep a close eye on them and stir more frequently to ensure that they do not burn.
While the pears are cooking, beat the eggs with a wire whip in a large mixing bowl. Stir in the flour, sugar, milk, cream and salt. Mix well.
Distribute the caramelized pears evenly in the bottom of the baking dish. Pour in the batter. Bake 25-30 minutes, until the flan is high and fluffy and the top turns a deep golden brown.
It is normal for a flan to settle when it leaves the oven. But be careful not to remove too soon, or your flan will collapse! A clues is whether the flan is firm when you shake the pan (it is done) or whether it jiggles (bake 5 minutes more).
Serve warm or at room temperature. Serves 4-6.