This dessert brings together two popular sweet dishes into one great dessert —crème caramel and red wine pears —a sure fire favorite. We like to serve it with a scoop of chocolate ice cream or sorbet.
2 tablespoons liquid glucose
500 ml milk
4 whole eggs
125 g sugar (divided into 100 g + 25 g)
Red Wine Pears
One 75-cl bottle red wine
525 g sugar (divided into 400 g+100 g +25 g)
1 cinnamon stick
1 vanilla pod
2 star aniseed
1 tablespoon pink peppercorns
8 small to medium pears, e.g. Williams, Roche or Comice
To serve, optional
Chocolate ice cream or sorbet
8 small tuiles or some grated chocolate
8 chocolate sticks
- First, for the pears, make a syrup in a deep saucepan with the wine, 250 ml of water and 400 g sugar. Boil until the sugar dissolves then infuse with the spices.
- Peel and core pears and place in boiling syrup. Return to a gentle boil then simmer, covered with a lid, simmer for about 15 minutes, turning once or twice to ensure the pears are well submerged in the syrup and cook until al dente.
- Leave in liquor to cool overnight then remove the pears with a slotted spoon. Cut each in quarters and cut out the cores. Make a sauce with the liquor by boiling it right down by at least three quarters until coats the back of a spoon like a syrup. Strain and set aside.
- For the crème caramels, sit 8 x 100ml dariole moulds in a deep roasting pan. Heat the oven to 140°C, Gas 1.
- Spoon the glucose into a heavy based saucepan with 100g sugar and 3 tablespoons water. Dissolve and then boil to a golden caramel. When the caramel is ready, pour into bottom of the moulds (about 100ml size).
- Beat the yolks in a large heatproof bowl with the remaining 25g sugar. Bring the milk just to boiling point then pour onto the eggs, beating well. Strain through a conical sieve into the moulds.
- Pour a kettle of boiling water into the roasting pan so the hot water comes two thirds the way up the sides of the darioles for a bain-marie, then cook for 35 minutes or until just set but still a little wobbly. Remove the pan from the oven and allow to rest then remove the moulds from the bain marie, cool and chill.
- To serve, demould the crème caramels and serve with pears and scoops of Chocolate Icecream or Sorbet placed on small tuiles with a chocolate stick on top, if liked.
Hint – to measure glucose, first warm the pot gently in the microwave for a few seconds.
From the book Modern French Cooking: Recipes from Simpsons Restaurant. Andrea Antona. Absolute Press. Buy the book
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