Long time, no chat! (aka a month has gone by and my blogging presence has been zero to nothing..)
But all within good reason, I promise (there always seems to be an excuse with me…) ma bad!
Shall I start this post off with a very belated… MERRY CHRISTMAS AND HAPPY NEW YEAR!!
Or is that just too far gone to even mention that we are nearly in February… somebody pinch me and make me say ‘2016’ over and over again so I can actually stop writing ‘2015’ on everything that requires a date…
2016 is upon us. it’s madness. so let’s eat.
I know it’s the new year, and the last thing most people wanna do is consume another dessert after them festive feasts.
But then I just think to myself… life is too short to avoid the sweet stuff… then I consume. then bec happy. it’s math.
Any remote longing to apply anything close to new years healthiness pretty much went out the window when shortly into the new year I went to Paris. I mean home of butter and baguette… need I say more?
Oh man, I could dream all day about the delicate lemon and sugar crepes we ate, oh and the fresh croissants we devoured in the mornings, ooo or even the tart fine aux pommes (thin apple tart) which we shared for dessert. This was all topped off by being surrounded by the magic of Paris in Winter, and finally being reunited with family who I hadn’t seen for 8 months – happy days it’s fair to say!!
The moment Paris is in the air, and I get a sudden urge to study all things French cuisine like how to create the perfect mille- feuille and get all the low-down on key french sauces (not to mention learning all that french food lingo so you can sound like a boss when you order).
So, in pre-Paris prep, I made a pear tart tatin, in attempt to unlock the french chef within.
Then I decided, ice-cream would be something I’d wanna eat with it… cause… ice-cream is always a good choice.
So, with limited time on my hands (and obvious lack of an ice-cream churner), I went about making ice-cream, non churner style. Cause I’m a bit of a bad ass.
There’s something so comforting to be found in the solace of caramelised pears with spices, a buttery pastry and creamy ice-cream. For me, it sings ‘winter comfort’ as well as ‘load me up for seconds‘.
I wish we could share oven aromas… cause this one makes for a good excuse to stay indoors, curl up by the heater (or fire if you’re lucky) and enjoy the smells wafting from the kitchen as the sugar and butter work there magic in this well loved dessert.
(As apart of my sincerest apologetics for lack of posting, I’m going to share a couple of pictures below from my time away in Paris and Ireland … more to come in future posts!)
PEAR TART TATIN WITH WALNUT PRALINE ICE-CREAM
Pear Tarte Tatin recipe adapted from Jennifer McLagan for Jamie Oliver
75g caster sugar
50g brown sugar
40g cold butter, chopped
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 ground ginger
3 large pears, peeled, cored and cut into slices
375 g bought puff pastry
220g caster sugar
½ a 397g can sweetened condensed milk
600ml pot double cream
1 tsp vanilla extract
Pear Tart Tatin:
1. Preheat oven to 200C. Put a 21cm-diameter frying pan with an ovenproof handle on a stove top over a medium heat. Add the sugar and heat to a caramel colour, stirring constantly. Add the butter, cinnamon and ginger and stir to combine.
2. Place the pears in the caramel and spoon over the mixture. Turn the heat down and cook for 5 minutes, until the pears are just tender and cooked but retain their shape. Remove from the heat and cool slightly. Arrange the pears prettily in the pan.
3. Roll out the pastry to about 5mm thick and cut a disc slightly bigger than your pan (about 24cm). Place the pastry disc on top of the pears and caramel, then carefully tuck it snugly around the outside of the pears and down into the sides of the pan.
4. Bake the pie for 30 minutes, or until the pastry is golden brown and puffed up. Remove from the oven and leave for 10 minutes. Run a knife around the edge, place a large plate over the top and carefully turn the tart onto the plate.
Walnut Praline Ice-cream:
1. To make the praline, line a baking tray with baking paper and spread the walnuts onto tray. Place the sugar in a small saucepan and cook over a low heat until the sugar melts and starts to turn a toffee colour (not stirring, just swirling the pan if need be). Quickly remove from the heat and pour over the walnuts. Set aside to cool. Place the praline in a food processor and roughly process until in small chunks, or you could break the praline up by placing in a bag, and breaking with a rolling pin (second option good for anger management).
2. In a large bowl, beat the condensed milk, cream and vanilla with an electric whisk, until thick and quite stiff. Fold through the praline and pour into a large loaf tin, cover with cling film and freeze until solid.
Serve the Pear Tart Tatin warm and with the chilled ice-cream! Enjoy!
Thanks for stopping by!