For the raisins: In a small bowl, soak the raisins in the Mulled Wine for 1 hour.
For the dough: In a large bowl, add the all-purpose flour, butter, sugar and salt. Using a pastry cutter, mix the ingredients until the mixture resembles coarse crumbs. Use just enough cold water, about 2 tablespoons, to bring the mixture together. Form a disk with the dough and wrap it in plastic wrap. Refrigerate for 1 hour.
Preheat the oven to 450 degrees F. Line a baking sheet with parchment paper.
On a clean surface, roll the dough to a large circle roughly 12 inches in diameter. Transfer the dough to the prepared baking sheet.
For the tart: Spread the pears in the center of the dough, leaving a 3-inch border on the outside. Remove the raisins from the wine and put on top of the pears.
In a small bowl, mix together the almond flour, almond paste, butter, cinnamon, salt and orange juice. Sprinkle the mixture over the pears and raisins. Fold over the edges of the dough to encircle the pears. Bake until the pears are tender, about 20 minutes.
Serve warm with vanilla ice cream.
Yield: 8 servings
Begin by placing the cloves, peppercorns, cinnamon and star anise into a large piece of cheesecloth. Make a pouch and tie it with kitchen twine.
In a large nonreactive pot over medium heat, add the wine, honey, lemon zest and juice, orange zest and juice and the cheesecloth of spices and bring to a simmer (be sure not to bring to a boil). Simmer for 30 minutes, and then add the brandy.