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Saturday, October 23, 2010

Roasted Pears with Chai Spiced Creme Anglaise

Fancy dinner party? Meet fancy dessert.

This dessert screams holidays: cozy pears wrapped in a luscious, creamy sauce. The pears are a cinch- and the Creme Anglaise takes mere minutes to make. I've hacked Dorie Greenspan's version of Creme Anglaise by adding Chai tea, spices, and cinnamon. I love the idea of Earl Grey Creme Anglaise, too. The next time I make this there will be Early Grey.

Roasted Pears with Chai Spiced Creme Anglaise
Inspired by Sally Schneider and Dorie Greenspan
Roasted Pears:

4 Large Pears (I've used bosc and comice, both worked great)
Juice of Half a Lemon
1 Vanilla Bean
1 cup Pear Nectar
1 tablespoon Butter, diced.

Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Using a vegetable peeler, remove the skin from the pears. Hold the stem, and then peel downward for the best results. Halve the pears and remove the seeds with a melon baller. Use a paring knife to remove the woody remnants leading to the stem. Arrange pears with the scooped side up in a large roasting dish.
Squeeze lemon juice over pears. Place the lemon half in the roasting dish and pour the pear nectar on top. Top each pear with a piece of butter.
Slice the vanilla bean in half lengthwise and place it on top of the pears.
Roast the pears for 20 minutes. After 20 minutes, flip the pears over and baste them with the juices. Roast for another 10-15 minutes, until the pears are soft, but still hold their shape. Baste pears with the pan juices before serving.

Chai Spiced Creme Anglaise:

1 cup milk (2% or higher)
1 cup Heavy Cream
1/2 cup sugar
6 egg yolks
1 teaspoon Chai Tea
5 Black Peppercorns
2 Cinnamon Sticks
Fill a large glass bowl with ice cubes. Place a smaller bowl on top for the finished creme. Place the tea and peppercorns in a cheese cloth. Combine the milk and cream in a small saucepan. Place the cheesecloth and cinnamon sticks in the milk mixture. Bring mixture to a full boil.
In a medium size saucepan, combine the egg yolks and sugar. Whisk until the sugar is evenly distributed.
Once the milk boils, turn the heat off and remove the cheesecloth and cinnamon sticks. Slowly add about 1/4 a cup of the milk to the egg yolks to temper the yolks. Whisk vigorously!
Slowly pour the rest of the milk into the yolks while whisking. Turn the heat back on to medium-low. Never stop whisking or the mixture will stick to the bottom of the pan. The mixture will start to thicken after about 2 minutes. Test the creme on the back of a wooden spoon with a finger. If the mixture is ready, it will cling to the spoon and won't run into the track.
Pour the mixture into the bowl. Refrigerate overnight in an airtight container. It will thicken and the flavors will blossom if you are patient enough to wait (I rarely am).
When ready to serve, spoon about 1/4 cup of the sauce onto a dessert plate or shallow bowl. Place one or two pear halves on top. Drizzle with the pear pan juices. Enjoy!

Read more at Food52


Betsy said...

Speaking as one of those who got to enjoy these roasted pears, they are wonderful. Another culinary success for Hilary Bee. Thanks for sharing them. :-)

Hilary said...

No problem! You can taste test my Earl Grey variety, too. I'm dying to try it out.

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