I have been going a bit overboard on the pear and chocolate recipes lately, but really who can blame me, it is a match made in culinary heaven. That being said I promise this will be the last one for a while.
I needed a dessert on Saturday, but didn’t have that much time to prepare one so I went with something that is so simple to make, but still makes a stunning impact on the plate. To give it a bit of extra bling I used gold leaf on the stem of each pear.
If you prefer you can make the chocolate sauce with out the spices by simply omitting the addition of the poaching syrup.
Poached Pears with Spiced Chocolate Sauce
- 4 pears
- 1 litre (33.81 fl oz) water
- 250gm (8.82oz) sugar
- 1 cinnamon stick
- 1 star anise
- 1 vanilla pod, split
- 2 whole cloves.
- 100gm (3.53oz) dark chocolate, chopped coarsely
- 100gm (3.53oz) pure cream
- 20gm (0.71oz) honey
- syrup from the poached pears.
Place water and sugar in a saucepan over a high heat. Heat water until sugar has melted and water is clear.
Turn down heat and add pears and spices. Place a cartouche** over the pears. Simmer approx. 10-15 minutes or until the pears are cooked. Test pears by gently putting a knife through the pear. If the knife slides in and out easily the pears are cooked.
**A cartouche is a sheet of baking paper cut into a round shape slightly smaller than the saucepan. This will keep the pears in the syrup and will help them cook evenly.
Carefully remove pears from the syrup with a slotted spoon and place on plates or a serving tray.
Set aside the syrup for the chocolate sauce.
Place the chopped chocolate in a heat proof bowl.
Place cream in a small saucepan and bring to the boil. Remove immediately from the heat.
Pour hot cream over chopped chocolate. Leave it to sit for a couple of minutes then stir until completely combined and smooth.
Allow chocolate to cool and thicken slightly.
Add some of the syrup (a few tablespoons at a time) tasting in between additions. Keep adding until you are happy with the flavour. Don’t add too much or the sauce will be too runny.
Note: The flavour of the spices in the chocolate will be stronger the next day. If you like the spice flavour you could make the sauce the day before and refrigerate it overnight. To soften the sauce place in a microwavable bowl on the lowest power setting for 10 seconds at a time until runny.