Juicy poached pears with brandy snaps

Juicy poached pears with brandy snaps
Sweet Treats

This is a dessert that provides a lot of warmth through autumn spices, with additional warmth from red wine and brandy. Making the snaps is tricky, but they don’t have to look perfect since they will taste delicious no matter what!

Poached Pears

6 large pears

120g sugar

150ml water

150ml red wine

2.5cm piece of cinnamon stick/1tsp cinnamon powder

2 tsp cornstarch

Brandy snaps

25g butter, room temperature

70g sugar

2 tsp golden syrup

20g flour ½ tsp ground ginger

125ml cream

1-2 tbsp brandy

  1. Poach the pears by combining the sugar, water, wine, and cinnamon in a pot. Heat gently until the sugar is dissolved, then bring to the boil and boil for 5 minutes.
  2. While the sauce is boiling, peel the pears but leave on the stalks. Place pears in the pot, reduce the sauce to simmering, cover and leave pears to poach for 20-30 minutes. The pears should be soft before removing from the pot.
  3. Allow to cool for a bit then transfer pears to the fridge. Mix the cornstarch with a tiny bit of water, then whisk into the sauce in the pot. Simmer for another minute then remove from heat.
  4. Once sauce is cool, pour over pears in the fridge so everything can cool for a couple hours.
  5. For brandy snaps, cream together the butter and sugar until light and fluffy, then beat in golden syrup. Sift in flour and ginger and mix together.
  6. Transfer mixture to a smooth surface and knead until smooth. You may need to add more flour depending on how sticky the dough is, but it should be a little sticky regardless. Cover and place in the fridge until cool, about 30 minutes.
  7. Preheat your oven to 190°C/Gas 5 and grease a baking sheet. Working in batches of 4, roll the cooled dough into balls roughly the size of a hazelnut, place far apart on the sheet, flatten, and bake for 10 minutes.
  8. Remove the sheet from the oven and allow to cool for a few moments. Working quickly, slide a metal spatula under each one, turn over, and drape over a wooden spoon. Gently wrap around the spoon–carefully because they will be quite warm–place on a cooling rack, and slide off the spoon once they have hardened. If the snaps start to harden before this, place in the oven to warm up again.
  9. Repeat with the rest of the dough, and once the snaps are cool whip the cream, mixing in the brandy before the cream is at soft peaks. Pipe the cream into the centre of the snaps.
  10. Serve the pears by placing them in a small bowl and pouring some syrup over them and placing a snap next to it.