This week Ringden are harvesting pears over in Sussex and we have our three favourite varieties – Conference, Comice and Concorde ready on our lists. All are fabulous but the combination of pear and maple in this recipe is an inspired pairing
Conference Pears are probably the best for cooking with the sweetest flavour. Comice and Concorde are perfect dessert pears as they are juicy and delicate.
We have it on good authority that pears are beneficial as a super-food, but maybe even more relevantly, as a hangover preventative…although you do have to eat quite a lot of them.
It appears that the enzymes in pears inhibit the breakdown in alcohol. So, maybe stick a couple of pears in the juicer before a night out to prevent a headache the next day?
How to ripen and keep pears
If pears aren’t ripe when you receive them, just leave them out for a couple of days and they’ll soften up nicely. Once ripe, then keep them in the fridge and use within a couple of days. Our fruit hasn’t had the bejesus sprayed out of it so they won’t keep forever.
Ways to use pears
Pears are a natural autumnal fruit that goes well with all dishes – sweet and savoury. To add fibre and depth to a soup, just blend a little pear with butternut squash.
Or this Martha Stewart recipe using the fatally delicious combination of pears and maple syrup is actually fairly easy and tastes way more sophisticated than it actually is.
- 400g cream cheese, room temperature
- 160ml cup pure maple syrup
- 235g cold heavy cream
- 2 tbspns icing sugar
- 1 Easy Press-In Pie Crust, made in a 9-inch springform pan with vanilla wafers
- Nonstick cooking spray
- 2 medium pears, such as Comice or Concorde, sliced lengthwise 1/2cm thick.
In a large bowl, using an electric mixer, beat cream cheese on high until fluffy, about 3 minutes. Add 1/2 cup maple syrup; beat until smooth. In a medium bowl, beat cream and sugar on high until soft peaks form, about 3 minutes. With a rubber spatula, stir about one-third the whipped cream into cream cheese mixture, then fold in remainder. Transfer to crust and refrigerate until firm, 3 hours (or up to 1 day).
Preheat oven to gas 7 / 220 degrees. Coat a parchment-lined rimmed baking sheet with cooking spray. Arrange pear slices in a single layer on sheet and brush with 2 tablespoons maple syrup. Roast until pears are soft, 20 minutes then grill for a few minutes to brown, rotating sheet frequently. Let cool. To serve, arrange pear slices, overlapping slightly, on cheesecake.
Pears and Blue Cheese
This recipe is from Real Simple, and it really is…
- 2 Pears cut into 8 wedges in total
- 2 teaspons fresh lemon juice
- 1 handful rocket
- 85g blue cheese, cut into small pieces
- 170g thinly sliced prosciutto, cut in half lengthwise
- In a large bowl, toss the pears and lemon juice.
- Layer a slice of pear, a rocket leaf, and a piece of cheese on a piece of prosciutto and roll up.