I've discovered my Fall Dessert winner this year : poached fruit. Plain, stuffed, wrapped in puff pastry, dipped in chocolate , possibilities are endless.
Once you make these I promise you, you won't be able to wait long before you eat these caramel coffee poached pears, they are so scrumptious; actually I've poached more pears so I can enjoy them during the week, there are in the fridge, waiting for my daily dessert moment. I love that I can store them in the fridge for a day or two and they are fine when I take them out.
Caramel Coffee Poached Pears
1cup granulated sugar - to make caramel
2tbl chopped fresh ginger
1/3 cup honey or brown sugar
1/2tbl espresso powder
4 pears, peeled, leaving the stem
2 rounds of parchment paper to fit the pan
Trim the bottom of the pears so you can stand them up, using a OXO Good Grips Melon BallerMelon Ballers)
remove the core from the bottom of the pear. Some recipes ask you to do this step after you poached the pears, I find it hard to do after they are poached so I do this before I poach them.
In a deep pan melt the sugar until amber color, be careful not to burn the caramel. Remove from heat and add 4 cups of water, mixture will harden but that is okay it will dissolve in several minutes. Return pot to the heat element and heat on low setting, using a wooden spoon break some of the caramel pieces and stir if possible. Add cinnamon sticks, star anise, coffee, additional sugar or honey, rum and ginger. Stir until caramel dissolves completely.
You can now put the pears into the simmering poaching liquid, take the parchment rounds and place them directly on the top of the floating pears and press very slightly down until you get some of the liquid on the top of the paper as the weight of the liquid will keep the parchment rounds lightly submerged, this helps with making sure pears are covered in liquid when poaching. ~Cook on very low setting~ Cooking will take only 15 - 20 minutes, depending on the size of the pears. It could be more.
Make sure you don't let them go too soft, you want them to hold their shape. They are done when you can easily cut into the pear with the knife but they are still holding their shape. Remove pan from the heat and let the pears cool in the poaching liquid, then remove them from the pan with the slotted spoon. You can now enjoy them either plain, or you can fill them(that is what we'll do) and you can also store them in the fridge until ready to use, they can be stored in the fridge for a few days, covered.
1/2 cup heavy whipping cream
1/2 cup sour cream
3tbl powdered sugar
1/4cup chopped walnuts or pecans
1/2tsp vanilla extract
Whip the heavy cream until softpeaks are formed add powdered sugar and vanilla extract and beat until stiff peaks are formed, don't over beat. Fold in sour cream and chopped walnuts, set aside and chill for 30 minutes.
Filling the Poached Pears
Trim the top of the pear and if needed using a knife or aOXO Good Grips Melon BallerMelon Ballers)
pull some of the inside out; we have cored the pears from the bottom so with taking some of the inside out from the top you will create a larger cavity for the filling. Once you have the cavity, you can now fill your pears. Simply place the filling into a piping bag or a small sandwich bag, cut the tip off and pipe the filling in.Place the trimmed top back on the top of the pear and serve.