I was finally able to come up with a solution leveraging some of the comments in issue 28601, plus additional trial and error. I posted the solution in issue 28601.
Here it is: Create or edit an AVD in the SDK Manager with these settings:
Target: API Level 15 CPU: Intel Atom x86 Resolution: custom 1280 x 800 Hardware: * Hardware Back/Home key: no * Abstracted LCD Density: 160 **note: 320 makes phone layout, 160 tablet * Keyboard lid support: no * Max VM application heap: 48 * Device ram size: 512 * GPU emulation: yes
And it works quite well. There are a few graphic glitches and artifacts, but it runs smooth as butter on my machine. Most importantly, it doesn't crash when I enable GPU emulation and Intel x86 CPU! Never again will I rue the tablet testing cycle. (Unless the next SDK tools update breaks it again.)