La Petite Grocery’s new chef Justin Devillier concocts a menu that deftly mixes the savory and sweet flavors of the fall

Appetizer
Apple, walnut and celery root tossed in white-wine vinaigrette with Roquefort and fresh herbs

Entrée
Braised shank of Berkshire pork with smothered greens and stone-ground grits

Dessert
Poached pear tart with vanilla sabayon and almond ice cream

A New SeasonPoached Pear Tart
Tart shell:
1/2 lb. butter
1/4 lb. sugar
1 egg
1 tsp. vanilla extract
1 lb. flour (cake flour, if possible)
Cream butter and sugar and add vanilla extract and egg.  Add flour just until incorporated. Refrigerate for 30 minutes.

Filling:
2/3 cup sugar
3/4 cup ground blanched almonds
2 tsp. flour
1 large egg, plus 1 egg white
1 tsp. vanilla extract
2 tsp. almond extract
Combine all ingredients in food
processor and blend until incorporated.

A New SeasonPears:
6 cups red wine
3/4 cup sugar
1 stick cinnamon
3 pears, peeled and cored
Combine red wine, sugar and cinnamon and bring to a simmer. Add pears and turn down heat. Gently poach for 20 to 30 minutes until tender and red in color.

Sabayon:
1 vanilla bean
6 egg yolks
1 cup white wine
1/3 cup sugar, plus more to taste
Combine all and whip over low steam until thick and ribbon-like.

To assemble:
Put tart mixture in a tart pan (one with individual tarts) and blind bake (bake the shells without the filling inside) the shells in a 325-degree oven for 20 to 30 minutes, until gold in color. Cool to room temperature. Fill each shell with 2 tblsp. of filling and bake for an additional 10 minutes. Let cool. Slice pears and fan out over filling. Warm up in the oven, then serve with sabayon and almond ice cream. Serves 6.

La Petite Grocery, 4238 Magazine St., 891-3377