While I’m visiting my family in Japan, I have asked several blogger friends to blog-sit for me and today’s sitter is Charles from Five Euro Food.
It’s been a truly wonderful experience for me to learn new dishes and recipes from Charles. Originally from the UK but now living in France, Charles exposed and introduced many European dishes to me that I never knew about. It’s very exciting for me to follow his blog because I have never been to Europe and it’s always been a dream of mine. He is a nice supportive gentleman who answers each everyone’s questions with sincere care. His blog is like a cozy private cooking lesson and he creates a very warm atmosphere on his blog.
Charles not only makes very budget-friendly recipes that all of us can appreciate, but his recipes are very easy to follow with step-by-step pictures and clear instructions. Check out his Swedish Waffles and Gluten-Free Crisp Bread for example. He pays close detail attentions to his creations which is why his recipes are all very clear and well written. If you are a visual learner, you will love his video recipes with a cool British accent.
Now please welcome Charles with this easy and delicious French-inspired dessert.
I’m a 29-year-old English guy, living and working in France for the past 7 years. I’ve always loved being in the kitchen – ever since making my first macaroni cheese for my family when I was about 7. I’m very honored to be here guest-posting for Nami today while she’s taking a well-needed vacation – I’ve been reading her site for many months now and really love the food she makes – such beautiful food and photography is always a pleasure to see. When she asked if I wanted to guest post for her I was very touched, but I just hope my dish can be as interesting, and appetizing as the wonderful things Nami normally posts herself.
I notice that it’s not so often that she posts desserts, and as I am English, I live in France, and my wife is Swedish, I had three different countries to draw inspiration from. I finally settled on something which I feel is wonderful in that it’s fast and easy to prepare, can be customized in any one of a hundred different ways and looks very impressive, plus everything sounds more fancy in French, right?!
The dish is also cheap to prepare, which fits in nicely in the theme of my site, FiveEuroFood.com. I knew I wanted to start blogging about my kitchen adventures – I also knew I wanted to have a creative outlet and a way of slowly improving my food photography. I figured making dishes to serve two or more people, for less than the cost of one burger meal in a fast-food joint was a worthy goal and so my site started from there.
Flambéed Pear Purses with Caramel Sauce and Ganâche
For the “Purses”:
- 2 pears (ripe)
- 3 sheets filo pastry
- 20 g sugar
- 20 g unsalted butter
- 30 g unsalted butter (for brushing)
- 3 Tbsp brandy
For the Caramel Sauce:
- 180 g sugar
- 100 ml heavy whipping cream
- 4 Tbsp unsalted butter
For the ganâche:
- 50 g dark Chocolate
- 50 ml heavy whipping cream
- Start by peeling, coring and finely chopping the pears.
- Next, melt the 20g of butter in a large frying pan and add in the chopped pears and 20g of Caster Sugar. Cook through for a couple of minutes until the pear juice starts to form a nice syrup with the sugar. At this point, pour in the brandy and allow to sizzle vigorously for a couple of seconds before setting it alight with a lighter or match. Allow to burn out, shaking the pan every few seconds.
- Melt the remaining 30g of butter for the purses either in a pan or placing in the microwave on high power for a few seconds. Cut the filo pastry sheets in half width-ways, so you get 6 pieces. Layer them on top of each other, brushing the top of each bottom sheet with butter before placing a new sheet on top. Once all three sheets are in place, brush the top again with butter.
- Preheat your oven to 220ºC (425ºF) and meanwhile place half of the cooked pear mixture into the centre of the pastry sheets. Bring the corners together and press gently at the top to form a small pouch or bag shape. Brush liberally again with butter and place onto a lightly greased baking sheet. Repeat the process again for the second purse and then place into the preheated oven and bake for 15-20 minutes until a rich golden brown.
- While the purses are baking place the sugar for the caramel sauce into a pan and melt over a medium heat, stirring all the time. When the sugar has completely melted down to a rich, brown sauce add in the cream. At this point the sauce will froth up a lot so watch out and stir well. When the bubbling has subsided add in the butter and stir until melted. Set aside and allow to cool.
- Next, melt the chocolate in another pan over medium heat, stirring all the time until completely melted. When ready, pour in the cream and stir well to blend. Place the purses onto serving dishes and serve the sauces with them. Sprinkle with a little powdered sugar if desired.