Tonight I did a riff on the usual pork and apple ho hum. Roast loin of pork with shallots and pears. Coated a loin with olive oil by hand, S&P, studded it with cloves and hot roasted long enough to brown, about 30-40 minutes; down heat and added just enough water to deglaze the forming caramel. Basted and roasted for another hour. Added peeled shallots and basted again. Half hour before finishing, I peeled/sliced one of those beautiful red skinned pears, put the slices in a bowl with enough red wine (barbera to be precise) to coat generously and added pear slices and wine to the roasting pan. Took out pork when done and finished the pears and shallots until I had a lovely sauce but the pears were still fairly intact. Sliced pork thinly and served with sauce. We ended up almost licking the roasting pan. Pears add a whole nuther dimension to the finished item.
Compote (does not make a lot so double, triple, quadruple the recipe as needed)
2 Anjou Pears, peeled, cored and sliced
1 spritz of lemon juice
1-2 tsp sugar (I would go with as little as possible. Pears are sweet enough. )
1 splash bourbon
1 quarter inch slice of fresh ginger, grated or chopped
1 tablespoon butter
1 sprinkle cinnamon
Melt butter in pan, add sugar until melted. Add pears and ginger, cinnamon and splash of bourbon and cook for about 5 minutes or to desired tenderness. Set aside.
1 cup Milk
3 Egg yolks
1/8 cup sugar
1 tablespoon Bourbon
Pinch of salt.
Beat eggs, sugar and salt until the color lightens. Set aside. Heat milk until scalding. Slowly add a tablespoon of milk to egg mixture, whisking the whole time. As you get further along you can stream milk in, but don’t stop whisking. Add Bourbon. Return mixture to heat and bring the heat up slowly over a low flame. Once the cream thickens, it’s done. Turn off heat, but keep mixing until it cools.
Make crepes according to basic crepe recipe and compose dish!!!
It’s really much better than my photography skills make it look. AHAHAHAHAHHAHA
One pate brisee recipe, pre-baked in a tart pan
2 large Quince (mele di cotogne) peeled, cored and quartered
2 Star anise
1 stick cinnamon
1 vanilla bean, split with seeds removed
1 cup sugar
3 cups water
2 tbsp apricot jam
Place the quince in a large saucepan with the star anise, cinnamon, vanilla bean and seeds, sugar and water. Bring to a simmer and cook until the quince soften enough for a fork to pierce easily but not enough that they fall apart. Remove quince from the poaching liquid. When cool, slice into 1/2 slices
Reduce the poaching liquid over medium heat until about 1 cup remains. It should be a deep ruby red. Remove the spices and set aside to cool slightly.
Meanwhile, spread the apricot jam on the tart shell in a very thin layer, just enough to seal the crust. Arrange the pear and quince in a pleasing alternating pattern in the center of the tart. Brush the fruit lightly with the reduced poaching liquid. Serve with remaining poaching liquid.
100 grams of gorgonzola
100 grams of” Duetto” (50% gorgonzola 50% marscapone)
60 grams Butter
60 ml cream(panna liquida)
a pinch of black pepper
a pinch of salt
a dash of nutmeg(optional)
Peel and cut the pears into cubes. Saute them in the butter in frying pan until they are soft and Amber(hihi) colored. Take it off the heat and add salt and pepper.
When the pears are done put your gnocchi water on when its boiling..
Cut the gorgonzola and duetto into cubes and put it in with the pear and butter. I added little by little the cream until it was all melted together and creamy.
Cook and drain the gnocchi, put the sauce on them and mix and add grate a dash of nutmeg.
Delicious pear, ginger and walnut upside-down pudding, a lovely moist pud and one of our customers favourites when we had our pub!
320g self-raising flour
200g soft brown sugar
1 1/2 tsp cinnamon
50g chopped walnuts
240 ml milk
100ml olive or sunflower oil
2 tbsp dark treacle
1. With the butter, grease the base (thickly) and sides of a 28cm springform round tin
2. Sprinkle 3 tbsp of the brown sugar over the butter and then half the chopped walnuts
3. Slice the pears very thinly and arrange in circles neatly on the bottom of the tin
4. Sieve the flour into a large bowl and add the rest of the sugar, spices and the remaining walnuts
5. In a separate jug whisk the milk, oil, eggs and treacle together
6. Add the wet ingredients to the dry and fold together
7. Pour mixture over the prepared base and bake in the centre of a Pre-heated oven at 175oC for approximately 40 minutes until golden brown and firm but springy to the touch
8. Turn out upside-down onto a large plate and serve warm with cream, ice cream or custard – yummy!
Chocolate sauce: 3/4 cup unsweetened cocoa powder
1 1/2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 1/2 cups whole milk
Place first four (dry) ingredients in a medium-sized saucepan, along with 1/2 cup of the milk and whisk to combine into a thick paste.
Add the remaining milk, bring the mixture to a boil, and whisk to combine well. When sauce boils, reduce heat to low and simmer very gently for 5 minutes, whisking often. Remove from heat, add vanilla, and cool.
1/2 cup toasted pecans (toasted 5 min at 350)
1/3 pound soft Gorgonzola cheese, room temperature 3 tablespoons heavy cream
Sea salt and freshly ground pepper
Finely chop the nuts in the work bowl of a small food processor. Crumble the cheese into the bowl and add the cream and salt and pepper to taste, and process until completely smooth, scraping sides when necessary. Serve at room temperature.
Pear ice cream:
2 1/4 pounds ripe Anjou or Comice pears, peeled, halved, cored, thinly sliced (about 4 cups)
1 cup pear nectar
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
6 large egg yolks
3/4 cup sugar
2 cups whipping cream
1 2-inch piece vanilla bean, split lengthwise
1/2 cup light corn syrup
Combine pears, pear nectar and lemon juice in heavy medium saucepan. Bring to boil over medium-high heat. Transfer to processor; puree until smooth. Chill until cold.
Whisk yolks and sugar in medium bowl to blend. Bring 1 cup cream to simmer in heavy medium saucepan. Gradually whisk hot cream into yolk mixture. Return to same saucepan. Scrape seeds from vanilla bean into mixture; add bean. Stir over low heat until custard thickens and leaves path on back of spoon when finger is drawn across, about 7 minutes (do not boil). Pour through strainer into bowl. Mix in 1 cup cream. Cool 15 minutes.
Add corn syrup and 3 cups pear puree to custard and whisk until blended (reserve any remaining pear puree for another use). Chill custard until cold, at least 4 hour or overnight.
Transfer custard to ice cream maker. Process according to manufacturer’s instructions. Transfer to covered container and freeze. (Can be made 2 days ahead.)
Dough for pasta (use commercial or your favourite recipe)
Preparation: peel the pears and rough grate them into a bowl and add lemon juice to keep from browning. Mix with the ricotta, egg and salt and pepper. Make the ravioloni and simmer until the pasta is done (don’t let them boil, they’ll fall apart); using a slotted spoon, carefully transfer one at a time to a plate covered with a dish towel. Pat off excess water. Melt the butter and add poppy seeds; let cook for about 4-5 minutes, then transfer the ravioloni to plates and pour the sauce over them. Optional: fresh grated parmesan. We calculated 1 raviolone per person but they were so good we ate 2!
Nothing says Autumn like the smell of Pear or Apple Butter cooking on the stove. I just love that smell. This kind of cooking brings me back home to New Jersey with the Mennonite side of my family. My mother used to get Apple butter during the fall and spread on toast such a treat.
Pear butter (brown butter) does not contain butter but is called butter because it has been cooked down to a concentrate of pears mixed with some spices. It is so thick and creamy and spreadable. The flavor is out of this world. It is not a jam, jelly or preserve, just thick concentrate of pears.
When you go to make it you are going to have to allocate many hours. It is a long process of cooking it down to a concentrate. I have made a small amount (1/2 liter) and it took 3 hours of slow cooking. I also do not cook on high heat because I am not making jelly or jam I am just cooking the water out of it and and caramelizing the pears and sugar. I have put sugar in mine but you can do it without. You can do the same with apples.
6 pears peeled and cored sliced
1 cups sugar
1 1/2 tablespoons pumpkin pie spice (cinnamon, ginger, cloves, nutmeg, all spice)
1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Put the pears in a saucepan, use a big pan, even though it is a small amount, when it is cooking it will splatter. Cook down till they are soft. Using a handheld blender and puree them. Then add the vanilla and sugar. Keep cooking it will look like apple sauce then start to thicken and darken. Keep cooking stirring many times to prevent burning. Keep the heat at a medium low to even low. You are going to be simmering it for a long while. Even though it looks dark you are going to keep going until it is really dark and when on a dish and cooled some it is spreadable. Store in a jar and refrigerate. You can also put in jars and do a canning process if storing on a shelf. Enjoy
6 peeled, cored and halved pears
¾ cups granulated sugar
2 tblsp fresh lemon juice
2 tblsp lemon zest
2 tsp vanilla essence
2 tsp ground cinnamon
Tub of ice cream or gelato
Except the pears and the ice cream, combine all other ingredients and bring to a boil. Reduce the heat to a simmer and carefully add the pears. Simmer for 10 – 12 minutes turning pears to coat on all sides and simmer an extra 10 minutes. Test the pears for tenderness by poking with a fork. Remove pears to a bowl and allow to cool. Turn up the heat and reduce the wine mixture by half to a syrupy content. Place two halves on each plate for service. Pour over wine syrup and add a scoop of ice cream or gelato.
Ok, I make this and one or two other desserts – and no more – desserts aren’t my ‘thang’. However, Mark will beg to differ! It’s just sleight of hand! He thinks I can cook anything! Give me something savoury and I’ll agree with him! Desserts are another animal entirely…. This is messy, but easy! (messy as in it uses just about every bowl you have in the kitchen!) The beauty of this recipe is that you don’t have to be precise for it to work! You want more chocolate? You just go ahead!
115g (4oz) plain or ’00′ flour
25g (1oz) cocoa powder
55g (2oz) caster sugar
1 large egg, beaten
3 tbsp (ish) orange marmalade (homemade the best, obviously!)
1 smallish chunk fresh ginger, peeled and grated
2 ripe pears
115g (4oz) dark chocolate with around 70% cocoa solids
55g (2oz) unsalted butter
2 large eggs, separated
115g (4oz) caster sugar
1. To make the pastry, rub the butter into the flour until the mix resembles breadcrumbs. Sift in the cocoa powder then add the sugar and enough of the beaten egg to bind the mixture together. Knead lightly, wrap in greaseproof paper and chill in the fridge for 20 mins.
2. On a lightly floured surface, roll out the pastry and use to line a 20cm (8 inch) fluted flan tin. Cover the bottom of the pastry case with the marmalade. (The pastry can be quite ‘wet’ so if you have to make a jigsaw with the pastry, that’s fine – just gently smooth the pastry pieces into the main pastry case. Evenly drizzle the grated ginger over the marmalade.
3. Peel the pears, cut into quarters and remove the cores. Arrange them in the flan case.
4. Melt the chocolate and butter together in a bowl over a saucepan of simmering water. Do not let the bottom of the bowl touch the water. Set aside to cool.
5. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas mark 4.
6. Beat together the egg yolks and sugar until pale and fluffy. Fold in the chocolate mixture. Whisk the egg whites until stiff, then fold into the mix.
7. Pour the mix over the pears as evenly as poss – use a spatula to very gently spread it about. You don’t want smooth, just mix to the edges at least!.
8. Bake for about 30 mins, until firm to the touch. Serve hot or cold.
Enjoy with some Sagrantino Passito!